There's much to see here. So, take your time, look around, and learn all there is to know about Kwanzaa. Click on the picture of the main stage to enjoy Entertainment from talent throughout the Capital District. Watch the videos below to learn about Kwanzaa, to pour libation with us, to be welcomed into the home of a different local family for Candle lighting each day and finally to shout Harambe with Aaron Carter! After that click on the pictures to explore Ujamaa Market , our daily workshop based on the principle of the day or to explore the Children's corner to find the story of the day or coloring pages.
Kwanzaa is an African American and Pan African Holiday founded by Dr. Maulana Karenga in 1966, with the intent to bring the black community together. Observed over a period of seven days from December 26th to January 1st, this celebration of family, community and culture is now practiced by over 18 million people worldwide. A non-religious holiday meant to bring all of the African diaspora together, the celebration was designed to strengthen community, reaffirm common identity, purpose and direction.
The word Kwanzaa is drawn from the Swahili phrase “Matunda Ya Kwanza”, which means first fruits. Swahili is a trade language used to facilitate communication between different language groups, this became a popular language in the Pan-African movement who sought to bring together Africans from all back grounds. Kwanzaa introduces and reinforces the Nguzo Saba (the Seven Principles.) The seven basic values of African culture that contribute to building and reinforcing family, community and culture. The Nguzo Saba both reinforce and enhance the building blocks of community. Each day of Kwanzaa is focused on the reflection and practice of one of these principles.
7. Imani (Faith) To believe with all our heart in our people, our parents, our teachers, our leaders and the righteousness and victory of our struggle.