HarlemWeek was started in 1974. It began as Harlem Day. A one-day tribute showcasing the community’s rich economic, political and cultural history including the ever increasing artistic talent in Harlem. It was a way of fostering encouragement and fellowship for New Yorkers and Harlemites in particular, many of whom had struggled for some years to see a positive future for Urban America.
HarlemWeek is now a week-long celebration. Harlem is hopping with free events throughout August ranging from fashion shows to film festivals and 5Ks. Below are some highlights, courtesy of the Daily News. For more information call (212) 862-8477 or visit HarlemWeek.com.
A GREAT DAY IN HARLEM
The uptown lovefest begins in General Grant National Memorial Park (W. 122nd St. & Riverside Drive) with Family Unity Day from noon to 4 p.m. featuring free catfish sandwiches from Marcus Samuelsson’s Red Rooster truck. The New York Gospel Caravan performs at 4 p.m. before the Urban Fashion Fusion Showcase at 5 p.m. End the evening on a high note with The Steven Oquendo Latin Jazz Orchestra’s “Concert Under the Stars” from 6-9 p.m.
NYC ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT SEMINAR LUNCH & EXPO
Columbia University hosts open panels and seminars in Alfred Lerner Hall (115th St. & Broadway) on health issues (9:30-11:30 a.m.), small business (9:30-11:30 a.m.) and economic development (10 a.m.-3 p.m.).
The city’s senior citizens are invited to morning and afternoon expos at 10 a.m. and noon inside the Adam Clayton Powell Jr. State Office Building (163 W. 125th St.), complete with a senior fashion show, luncheon and honors for the oldest man and woman in attendance.
AUG. 10-SEPT. 7
Harlem residents score Amateur Night tix at the world-famous Apollo Theater (253 W. 125th St.) for half-price ($9.50-$14.50) Wednesdays throughout Harlem Week(s), with special guest performers including R&B singers Alyson Williams, Johnny Kemp and Freddie Jackson.
HARLEM WEEK TRI-STATE JUNIOR TENNIS CLASSIC
Rising boys and girls tennis stars ages 12 to 18 reign on the Fred Johnson Tennis Courts (W. 150th St. & Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. Blvd.) in a four-day showcase where the winners score scholarships and trips to Florida tennis camps.
SUMMER IN THE CITY
West 135th St. throws a block party between Malcolm X and Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvds. from noon to 5 p.m. with games, arts & crafts, live music and dance, including excerpts from Disney musicals. The Harlem YMCA hosts an open house, or scope out healthy eating and living exhibits and sports clinics.
YOUTH/SENIORS SWIMMING DEMONSTRATIONS
The Harlem Honeys and Bears synchronized swim team shares their aquatic techniques with the whole family at the Hansborough Recreation Center (35 W. 135th St.) from 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
NATIONAL BLACK HISTORIC COLLEGE FAIR & EXPO
Network with more than 50 representatives from historical black colleges and universities, including Howard University and Morehouse College. Pick up info on admissions, scholarships and testing requirements on W. 135th St. between Malcolm X and Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvds. from noon to 5 p.m.
INTERNATIONAL EXHIBITORS & VENDORS VILLAGE
Browse booths showcasing local artisans’ music, jewelry, arts & crafts, accessories, bites and beverages, plus job recruitment tables on W. 135th St. (between Adam Clayton Powell Jr. & Frederick Douglass Blvds.) from noon to 5 p.m.
DANCING ON THE STREET
Kick up your heels from the Electric Slide to a reggae tribute to Bob Marley on W. 135th St. from 3-5 p.m., followed by the Going Out at Night Fashion Flava Show from 5-6 p.m. and The Quiet Storm from 6-8 p.m.
IMAGENATION OUTDOOR FILM SHOWCASE
Get a sneak peek at short independent films like “Rubber Soles” from local artists before a screening of Michael Jackson’s “This Is It” on St. Nicholas Park’s great lawn (135th St. & St. Nicholas Ave.) from sundown to 9 p.m.
The nabe pulls out all the stops with this 37th anniversary crosstown celebration.
SITE I: Roll over to 135th St. (between Fifth Ave. and Malcolm X Blvd.) from 10 a.m.-7 p.m. for the Upper Manhattan Auto Show’s 100 antique, vintage, exotic and collectible rides. The NYC Health Fair & Expo sets up a “health village” giving free medical screenings, while the Fifth Ave. Main Stage salutes R&B with live acts.
SITE II: Walk an avenue (135th St., between Malcolm X & Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvds.) to the NYC Children’s Festival tribute to the children of Haiti at the P.S. 175 schoolyard. Local kids strut their stuff in a back-to-school fashion show, or enjoy a lineup of dance, R&B, jazz and spoken word performances from noon to 7 p.m. on the YMCA stage.
SITE III: Members of the Harlem Arts Alliance showcase their works at the International Exhibitors & Vendors Village (between Adam Clayton Powell Jr. & Frederick Douglass Blvds.) from noon to 7 p.m.
SITE IV: The St. Nicholas Main Stage spins an international musical tribute to R&B, hip hop and gospel with an adult fashion show on 135th St. & St. Nicholas Ave. from 2-8 p.m.
SITE V: ImageNation screens a film salute to Lena Horne in St. Nicholas Park (135th St. & St. Nicholas Ave.) from 7-9 p.m., including 1943′s musical “Stormy Weather.”
PERCY SUTTON HARLEM 5K RUN & NY FAMILY HEALTH WALKATHON
Hoof it 3.1 miles around historic Harlem with the New York Road Runners in honor of civil rights activist Percy Sutton. After the run, make strides to support Harlem’s Healthy Eating and Living (HEAL) Initiative
and as a tribute to Japan relief efforts.