Freedom Summer Celebration

Bringing History, Arts & Culture Together

Mark your calendars as Hammond Regional Arts Center presents an event honoring the 60th Anniversary of the Freedom Summer of 1964. HRAC is proud to announce the evening's featured guest speaker artist Kevin Brown, who will take us on a journey back to the heart of the Civil Rights Movement with his presentation “Freedom Summer: Arts & Advocacy.”

The evening will feature Kevin Brown's artwork and presentation along with performances by Ameal Cameron and the Ponchatoula High School Step Team.

Date: Wednesday, June 19th
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Location: Hammond Regional Arts Center
Price: Free to the public


 

ENTERTAINMENT HIGHLIGHTS


Music By Ameal Cameron

Providing musical performances during our Freedom Summer Celebration will be acoustic R&B/soul musician Ameal Cameron. He is a soulful singer-songwriter who turns emotions into melody. His songs beautifully paint a clear picture of what he’s feeling. His unique voice warrants head turning reactions from any crowd, in any space he plays. Born and raised in New Orleans, Ameal and his family now reside in Baton Rouge, a move they made after the devastating effects of  Hurricane Katrina. Ameal’s main goal is to one day make a living from his music, as it is what he loves.

You can listen to his music by clicking here.

 

Step Performance by PHS Step Team

Get ready to see some showmanship as the Ponchatoula High School Step Team engages us with their rhythmic stomping, clapping, chanting and synchronized movements.


 

The Freedom Summer 1964
The Freedom Summer of 1964 was a pivotal civil rights campaign in the United States, aimed at combating voter suppression and racial segregation in Mississippi. Organized by civil rights organizations such as the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), it brought together hundreds of predominantly young, white volunteers from across the country to register African American voters in Mississippi.

At that time, Mississippi had one of the lowest voter registration rates for African Americans in the country, largely due to discriminatory laws, intimidation tactics and violence. The Freedom Summer aimed to challenge these barriers to voting rights and raise awareness about the injustices faced by African Americans in the South.

Despite the dangers, the Freedom Summer made significant strides in registering African American voters and drawing national attention to the issue of racial inequality in the United States. It also laid the groundwork for the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which prohibited racial discrimination in voting and provided federal oversight of election practices in states with a history of voter suppression.


 

ABOUT KEVIN BROWN

Kevin Brown is a retired Air Force member and transitioned from the Air Force in 2017. Since this time he has served as a substitute teacher, a youth sports coach, and finally a community advocate. Kevin's artistic style is a dynamic fusion of visual and mixed media elements. His creations are not only visually captivating but also serve as a powerful medium for conveying messages that challenge the status quo.

Recognizing the transformative potential of art, Kevin has dedicated his talent to advocating for social justice, equality, and environmental awareness. His current work includes the “Freedom Summer” series explores a civil rights era theme, shedding light on the nuances of the human experience and the pressing challenges faced during the McComb movement. He is the author of two titles, "I Live On A Street Named St. Augustine" and "Burglundtown Activity Book."

Throughout his career, Kevin Brown has curated exhibits and participated in collaborative projects that bring attention to important causes. His exhibit “Perspectives From Generations Beyond the Dream” received acclaim for its ability to provoke introspection and inspire dialogue by students from several school districts in Southwest Mississippi in their reflection of Dr. King’s legacy of equality.

Kevin is the founder of Gertrude’s Garden, a community garden, and actively engages with the community through workshops, talks, and collaborative initiatives. He believes in the power of art not only to reflect the world but also to actively shape it. Whether through literary works, art installations, or digital media, Kevin strives to make a lasting impact on both the art world and the issues he holds dear.

As an artist committed to the fusion of creativity and advocacy, Kevin Brown invites viewers to not only appreciate the aesthetic beauty of his works but to join him in the journey towards a more just and compassionate world.

 

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