June 17 marks one year since the death of nine parishioners at Charleston's Emanuel AME church. Events to commemorate the lives of the Emanuel Nine are taking place throughout the Holy City next week, some even started earlier this month. These walks, concerts, exhibitions, and discussions will both honor and celebrate the lives lost and will look at the city's past, present, and future, in hopes of creating a greater sense of both unity, and change.
*Please note, we have left off some ticketed events, as well as smaller events like bible studies. For the list in its entirety, head here.
CharlestonStrong Book Drive, Now-June 30
This book drive is a partnership from Cynthia Graham Hurd Foundation for Literacy and Civic Engagement, Reading Partners Charleston, Live5 WCSC-TV, and CCPL. A Charleston County Public Library employee for over 30 years, Cynthia Graham Hurd had a powerful impact on the city's public libraries. Books can be dropped off at libraries throughout the area. Check here
for the full list of drop off locations.
Kindred Kids' Woven Mandala, Now-June 30
A mandala, woven by students
in the WINGS Kindred Kids program from North Charleston Elementary and Mason Prep school, will be on display in the Main Library's lobby. Kindred Kids is a program that was created after the Emanuel AME tragedy with the mission of helping kids from diverse backgrounds better understand each other.
The Life and Legacy of Cynthia Graham Hurd, Now-June 30
Experience the impact Cynthia Graham Hurd continues to have through an exhibition of photographs documenting her career with CCPL and memorial materials expressing an outpouring of love and respect for the 31-year librarian. This exhibition is on display
in the Main Library's lobby.
A Tribute to the Emanuel Nine: A Portrait Project, Now-June 30
Nine artists have painted portraits
of the victims of Mother Emanuel in this exhibition, going on now through the end of the month.
The Holy City: Art of Love, Unity, & Resurrection, Now-July 17
The Holy City exhibition is a multi-media event
that gives voice to the breadth and depth of the Black-American experience. A portion of proceeds will benefit an effort to create a permanent place on the Peninsula, as envisaged by Reverend Clementa Pinckney, "where African-American artists can show their work."
Prayer Quilts for Mother Emanuel, June 18-June 30
Prayer Quilts for Mother Emanuel is an exhibition featuring 27 quilts
and a sampling of the hundreds of objects received by the church in the aftermath of last year's tragedy.
Requiem to Mother Emanuel, June 21-July 31
Leo Twiggs created a series of nine paintings in the exhibition, Requiem for Mother Emanuel
, and the City Gallery will devote its entire first floor to the paintings. Accompanying the series of images is video commentary from the artist. Twiggs produces his paintings using the batik method, the technique of manual wax-resistant dying applied to the whole cloth. Read more about the artist here.
Friday, June 17
Charleston Friends of the Library host their second book sale of the year
, starting on Friday, June 17 at 9 a.m. During the sale special bookmarks will be given to attendees, and Mother Emanuel memorial prints by photographer Michael Kaynard will be available for purchase.
Emanuel AME hosts After Charleston: Commemoration, Healing and Hope, a service open to the public, from 4-5:30 p.m.
After the service, guests are invited to attend a potluck dinner at the Second Presbyterian Church of Charleston, 342 Meeting St., which will have free food donated by local restaurants starting at 6 p.m.
At 7 p.m., Emanuel AME will hold After Charleston: The Sacred Space, an event where members of the public are invited to experience the space of Mother Emanuel for worship, prayer, and reflection. The choir of St. James Presbyterian Church will perform, and worship leaders will include Will Reagan of United Pursuit and Freddy Washington of the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir and Worship Leaders of Charleston. Learn more here
After Charleston: The Activation, held at 9:30 p.m., is both a summit and a mixer designed to help unify Charleston. The locations are TBD, and RSVPS should be sent to email@example.com. For more info head here.
Saturday, June 18
From 8 a.m.-1 p.m., head to Buist Academy for Samaritan's Feet, an event that hands out free socks and tennis shoes to school-aged children. Register here.
A walk of Unity and Thanksgiving leaves from Marion Square at 11 a.m., ending at the Gaillard's lawn. Register for the walk here.
At 11:30 a.m., there will be a release of doves and unity and healing ceremony. At 12:30 p.m. keynote speaker Rev. Bernice King will speak at the Mother Emanuel tree dedication ceremony, along with Rev. Shirley Caesar.
The Charleston Spiritual Ensemble comes together with the Charleston Gospel Choir to honor the Emanuel Nine with a memorial concert, E pluribus unum
, at the Gaillard at 7 p.m.
Sunday, June 19
At 8 a.m. there will be a Service of the Bells, led by St. Michael's Episcopal Church, and a worship service at Emanuel AME, led by Rev. Dr. Betty Deas Clark, starts at 9:30 a.m.
Monday, June 20
Several of We Are Charleston'
s authors, Herb Frazier, Dr. Bernard Edward Powers, Jr., and Marjory Wentworth, will discuss the new book,
whose description reads, "We Are Charleston
not only recounts the events of that terrible day but also offers a history lesson that reveals a deeper look at the suffering, triumph, and even the ongoing rage of the people who formed Mother Emanuel A.M.E. church and the wider denominational movement." The talk will be held at the Main Library at 6 p.m., and copies of the book will be available for sale.
Area leaders and law enforcement officials will give a talk, Gun Control and Building Positive Relationships
between Youth and Law Enforcement, at the Main Library at 2 p.m.
Street artist R. Robots painted a mural on the side of Dart Library several months ago in honor of the library's branch manager for 21 years, Cynthia Graham Hurd. The geometric mural features images of books, appropriately, and the mural will be dedicated
to Hurd's contribution to literacy at 9 a.m. on Monday morning.
Tuesday, June 21
Celebrate Cynthia Graham Hurd's birthday at St. Andrews Regional Library
at 2 p.m. where guests can enjoy cake, crafts, and children's activities. Youth attendees will receive a free book donated by Hurd's family.
Love Week: June 20-25.
This week sees a host of events from a house tour to a career fair. Find the full details at Mother Emanuel's website.
We've detailed a few days below:
Thursday, June 24
From 6-8 p.m. a racial justice panel, Voices from the Valley, will be held at Emanuel AME.
Saturday, June 25
A candlelight vigil will be held at Emanuel AME, along with a service of the bells led by St. Michael's Episcopal Church, from 8-9 p.m.
Sunday, June 26
Mayor John Tecklenburg has announced this day as Mother Emanuel and Survivors Day in Charleston.