It’s no secret – Detroit has played a special and pivotal role in some of our nation’s most monumental historical moments. From the days of the Underground Railroad, with Detroit being the last stop on many slaves’ path to freedom, to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. giving his first version of the I Have A Dream speech at Cobo Center (then known as Cobo Hall), Detroit is in the history books next to some iconic names as an influential city within these periods.
Detroit continues to honor its roots in a variety of ways throughout Black History Month (and beyond!) The city takes pride in its extensive collection of art, historical monuments and inclusive businesses to give locals and visitors an opportunity to observe Black History Month and have some incredible experiences along the way.
Learn more about your community, inclusive grassroots efforts and Detroit’s notable history during Black History Month in three simple ways:
Shop Black-Owned Businesses
Being aware of Detroit’s black-owned small business scene is a great way to keep your dollars local and support entrepreneurs. The list of black-owned businesses in Detroit continues to grow, with many business owners finding ways to open up shop in their own neighborhoods. Whether you’re looking for a meal to die for, or a new outfit for a special occasion, the following businesses have your back:
- Detroit is the New Black
- Flo Boutique
- Source Booksellers
- Eric’s I’ve Been Framed Shop
- Savvy Chic Trends
- Hot Sam’s
Food and Beverage Stops:
- Good Cakes and Bakes
- Savannah Blue
- House of Pure Vin
- New Center Eatery
- Kuzzo’s Chicken & Waffles
- Louisiana Creole Gumbo
Attend Black History Month Community Events
The entire month of February is full of amazing community events revolving around Black History Month. Learn something new and explore the city by checking out programming from some of Detroit’s best community organizations:
- Black History Month Black-Owned Bar Tour hosted by the Detroit Experience Factory
- Black History Month celebrations at The Henry Ford
- A night of poetry and music during the Black History Month: A Night Celebrating Creativity and Movement event at the Detroit Institute of Arts.
- The Detroit Pistons will honor prominent African-American leaders in the Detroit community throughout February. Honorees and game days include:
- Jimmy Settles, Group Executive – Neighborhoods for the City of Detroit and former UAW-Ford Vice President on Feb.
- Portia Roberson, Focus Hope CEO and former Group Executive – Civil Rights, Inclusion and Opportunity – City of Detroit on Feb. 4
- Dr. William Packard, Global Automotive Alliance Chairman on Feb. 8
- Rick Mahorn, Pistons Bad Boy and Community Ambassador on Feb. 11
- Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul, who will be honored posthumously on Feb. 25
Discover Black History for Yourself:
More of the independent type? Detroit’s museums and galleries never disappoint, especially when it comes to their Black History Month exhibits, collections and events. Though Detroit museums and cultural institutions are a staple for any visit to the city, February is one of the best times to give them a peek:
- Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History
- Detroit Historical Museum
- N’Namdi Center for Contemporary Art
- Second Baptist Church – Detroit Underground Railroad Historical Society
Clearly, there is no shortage of enlightening experiences within the city during Black History Month. Whether you find yourself spending hours in a special exhibit, or eating an afternoon snack at one of city’s many black-owned businesses, experiencing February in Detroit is a truly enriching adventure.
Discover more about Detroit attractions.
18Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History315 E. Warren Ave., Detroit, MI 48201313-494-5800
21Second Baptist Church - Detroit Underground Railroad Historical Society441 Monroe St., Detroit, MI 48226313-961-0920