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All of the information on this page comes from the Matter of Black & Black Owned 905 social media, as well as migrant workers activism happening in the region. The above image was created by Chance Mutuku. The only role OPIRG Brock plays is in supporting the work of these community organizers by sharing them through our platforms.

Ways to support & keep up to date:

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Click "Going" on the Emancipation Day Facebook Event, and invite your friends!

2. Go through the 4 day schedule (scroll to the pink box on this page) and plan out which events you are able to attend!

“This movement is designed to support and uplift black owned businesses in Niagara, and surrounding areas. We will be hosting local and virtual black markets to showcase and support black entrepreneurs.” via the @BlackOwned905 Instagram 

3. Follow, Like, Tag, & Support Black Owned 905 on Instagram & Facebook.

Check out the list of vendors and businesses, follow them, and spend money at them often!

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4. Follow, like tag & support Matter of Black on Facebook!

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5. Follow, like tag & support Erica's Embrace

6. Follow, like tag & support Brock BIPOC Caucus on Instagram

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7. Follow, like tag & support the Settler Support for Migrant Farmworkers on Instagram!

Emancipation Day STC - July 29-Aug 1
Downtown St. Catharines &
Lakeside Park in Port Dalhousie

After 2 years of hosting virtual and hybrid celebrations, co-founders Erika Smith, Natasha Bell and Jaida Steenhuis are ecstatic to bring the celebration back to Lakeside Park in Port Dalhousie.

 

Information & History about Emancipation Day STC:
St. Catharines - Matter of Black (MOB) and BlackOwned905 are proud to announce the in-person return of #EmancipationDaySTC, an annual celebration set to reawaken old traditions and foster greater solidarity and pride among the Black Canadian community in memory of its remarkable achievements and in face of persistent racism.

 

Historically, the annual Emancipation Day Picnic was said to have rivalled only Christmas as the high point in the lives of Black Canadians living in Niagara. And from 1924 until the early 1970s, as many as 8,000 people could be expected to converge at Lakeside Park in Port Dalhousie to attend the "Big Picnic" each year. People came from Toronto to Owen Sound and throughout the Great Lakes region, with some even travelling from Virginia and Tennessee in the U.S. to attend.


Emancipation Day has been part of St. Catharines history since 1924 and leadership from the local Black community and many partner organizations is bringing it back to centre stage. The Niagara community is once again invited to join in on the celebration and are encouraged to share their participation with the #EmancipationDaySTC.

EMANCIPATION DAY WEEKEND ACTIVITIES SCHEDULE

For more information visit firstontariopac.ca and Matter of Black social media pages.

  • Fri 29 July

    • 2pm — Join us in person for a Flag raising at St. Catharines City Hall with the organizers from Matter of Black, Black Owned 905, FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre, and City of St. Catharines.

  • Sat 30 July

    • 4pm - 9pm— Black Owned 905 Market (St. Paul and Carlisle Streets - Downtown Promenade)

    • 5pm — Special performance by Shad with DJ Rennie + BlackOwned 905 Market (St. Paul and Carlisle Streets - Downtown Promenade)

    • Dusk — Summer of Soul Film Screening PAC Backyard - Mann Raceway Plaza (US, 2021. Directed Questlove. 118 min. PG-13). Starring: Dorinda Drake, Barbara Bland-Acosta, Darryl Lewis

  • Sun 31 July

  • Mon 1 Aug - EMANCIPATION DAY

    • 10am - dusk — Matter of Black and Black Owned 905 presents #EmancipationDay STC in Lakeside Park with live entertainment and activities ALL DAY LONG! The day will feature incredible Black talent from Niagara and beyond, activities for the whole family and food options on site. An incredible day of music and celebration presented by Matter of Black:

    • 10am - 11am — Soka Fit on the beach

    • 1pm - 6pm — DJ Rennie

    • 2pm — Drumming Performance by Alpha Rhythm Roots

    • 3pm - 3:45pm — Drumming Workshop with Alpha Rhythm Roots | * It is recommended that kids be 11 years old and up to truly benefit from the workshop. | * Registration is require

    • 6:30pm — Spoken Word with Dwayne Morgan

    • 7pm — LMT Connection | The Emancipation Day celebration caps off with a live outdoor performance by Niagara’s premiere funk and soul band, the LMT Connection featuring the legendary Motown frontman Leroy Emmanuel.

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call on the government to take this historic opportunity to work with migrant-led groups to regularize (give permanent resident status) to all undocumented people and ensure permanent resident (PR) status for all 1.7 million migrants.

11. Spend time listening to Freedom: A Community Mixtape regularly. Coordinated by Marcel Stewart at Suitcase In Point, Freedom is an audio mixtape of original songs, stories, poems, anecdotes, and spoken word pieces from folx living in the Niagara Region.

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