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In getting your Kwanzaa on


If you haven't attended any of the festivities commemorating Kwanzaa--the African "First Fruits" celebration with an African American twist--now's your last chance. The Hayti Heritage Center's seventh-annual Kwanzaa Celebration hasn't lost any momentum since it began on Dec. 26. Boasting record numbers and a few sold-out nights, the festival's weeklong series of artists, performers and storytellers has been scheduled to reflect each of the seven virtues honored during Kwanzaa.

The Center's upcoming events coincide with the celebration's last two virtues: Kuumba and Imani (creativity and faith, respectively). On the day of Kuumba, spoken word artist Tim Jackson will read from his works. One of Jackson's more recent outings was his self-produced and directed One Man's Quest for Soul Redemption, of which he was also the star. The ambitious project placed performances of N.C. poets within the context of a larger narrative--essentially letting the poets remain true to their individual work while simultaneously forming a kind of community-generated narrative. Jackson's performance will be held Wednesday, Dec. 31 at the St. Joseph's Performance Hall, 7:30 p.m. Admission is free.

On New Year's Day, Chuck Davis and the African American Dance Ensemble will celebrate Kwanzaa's last day at the Durham Armory from noon to 6 p.m., featuring an array of African rhythms and dances, as well as performances by N.C. Central University vocalists and a youth choir under the direction of Brother Oren Marsh. Admission is free, although the audience is encouraged to donate nonperishable food items to the Durham Rescue Mission.

For information on additional events call 683-1709 or visit

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