Maplewood Town Hall Lights Up in Celebration of Black History Month


In addition to a jam-packed month of events and programs, February marks the first of an ongoing series of light installations at the Maplewood Municipal Building.

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From the Maplewood Division of Arts & Culture:


Black History Month in Maplewood, New Jersey is in full swing this year. In addition to a jam-packed month of events and programs, February marks the first of an ongoing series of light installations at the Maplewood Municipal Building. Beginning with a celebration of Black History Month colors, the building will be lit for each respective holiday from month to month.

Maplewood Mayor Dean Dafis reflected on the installation saying “Our Municipal Building (much like the Empire State Building) represents the diversity and pride of our community and that of our workplace staff who work within it. It will be the beacon of Maplewood as ever-evolving toward greater inclusion, a reminder of who we are, a welcoming signal to all.  We’re very grateful to our lighting designing team at Quantum for their beautiful work bringing this project to life.”

Holiday lighting themes will include: Black History Month, Women’s History Month, Breast Cancer Awareness, Valentine’s Day, Pride, the Fourth of July, Memorial Day, Labor Day, Juneteenth, Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, Indigenous Peoples’ Day, Climate Week, 9/11, World AIDS Day, Halloween, New Year’s Eve, Presidents Day, St Patrick’s Day, MLK Day, Gun Violence Awareness Day, and Lunar New Year, with the option to add more.

Maplewood Town Hall during Black History Month 2023

Programming for the month is already underway including A Family Affair, an exhibition on view at the 1978 Maplewood Arts Center featuring artist Timothy J. Simmons. The exhibition, which highlights Black family life, will be on view throughout the month. The artist and exhibition curator, Nette Forné Thomas, will lead an Artist Talk on February 18, 2024 at 2 PM.

“We were thrilled to welcome so many people earlier in the month to 1978 and have so much more planned for the community this month to celebrate Black History Month,” says Melissa Mancuso, Director of the Department of Community Services. “We hope the public will join us for a number of upcoming film screenings as well as programs highlighting Black history featuring local musicians, artists, and authors.”

Black History Month Highlighted Events:

February 5 – 26, 2023 A Family Affair, A solo exhibition by artist Timothy J. Simmons. 1978 Maplewood Arts Center. 1978 Springfield Avenue. Gallery hours Sat/Sun 2-4 PM. Artist Talk February 18 2 PM. 

February 19, 2023 Maplewood Department of Community Services Presents: Soul, a free film screening at The Woodland, 60 Woodland Avenue. 2:00 PM. Food provided by Urban Cone Ice Cream. All ages.

February 23, 2023 Harambee Chamber Orchestra Presents: Jubilee! A Celebration of Black Composers, an enlightening and inspiring selection of great music, featuring top student ensembles of Maplewood and South Orange. Free event at The Woodland, 60 Woodland Avenue. 7:00 PM.

For a complete listing of Black History Month events and programming visit

The mission of the Division of Arts & Culture, under the Community Service Department is to foster a creative community of artists and organizations, enhancing the quality of life for residents of Maplewood by ensuring that arts & culture experiences are inclusive and accessible to all.


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