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January 17, 2014

OCC Sponsors Black History Month Events In February

February is Black History Month and Ocean County College’s Organization for Black Unity is celebrating!  The theme for this year is “Civil Rights in America” and will focus on chronicling the important milestones by African-Americans and others in the battle for civil rights and equal treatment under the law.  All events are open to the public and held on the OCC Main Campus, College Drive, Toms River, NJ.

Monday, February 3 at 12:00 noon, the Opening Ceremony & Raising of the Black Flag will be held at the Flag Pole, Campus Mall.  From 12:30 to 3:45 p.m., a Soul Food Tasting and Open Mic/Read-In by OCC Faculty, Staff, and Students will take place in the Solar Lounge, College Center (Building #15).  Admission: FREE.

Wednesday, February 5 at 8:00 p.m., MidWeek Jazz Series presents the Dorian Parreott Quartet in the ACC Theatre, Arts & Community Center (Building #18).  Talented, multi-instrumentalist Dorian Parreott, returns to OCC, this time leading his quartet.  In-demand since his teenage years, in both classical and jazz circles, Parreott has performed with Henry Threadgill, David Murray, the Scott Joplin Orchestra, Eastern Wind Ensemble, Monmouth Symphony, the Garden State Philharmonic, and the Top Brass Quintet, among others.  Parreott plays tuba, drums, trombone, baritone saxophone, and trumpet.  He’ll be joined by a trio of top Jersey jazzmen, Mark Cohn on keyboard, Mark Chernoff on tenor saxophone, and Vincent Corrao on guitar.  Admission: $22 adult / $18 senior / $12 student.  Purchase tickets online at or call the Arts & Community Center Box Office at 732-255-0500.

Tuesday, February 11 at 12:30 p.m., The Road to Freedom - A Journey Toward Peace will be presented in the Black Box Theatre, Room B100, Arts & Community Center (Building #18).  The Road to Freedom is a live multimedia experience highlighting the extraordinary endeavors of the civil rights advocates who banded together, against all odds and seemingly insurmountable obstacles, to challenge the unfairness of discrimination, prejudice, and racial inequality.  Admission: FREE

Monday, February 17 at 1:00 p.m., a viewing of The Negro Zone Experience in the Black Box Theatre, Room B100, Arts & Community Center (Building #18).  This film/workshop takes a look at the stereotypes of African-American men, using the award-winning short film The Negro Zone, followed by an open forum, “The Hot Seat” prepared by Philadelphia-born actor/writer/producer Atif Lanier.  Admission: FREE.

Wednesday, February 26 at 2:00 p.m., a Music Workshop with Contemporary Gospel Singer James M. Robinson, Sr. will be held in the Music Rehearsal Room, Room A117, Arts & Community Center (Building #18).  The workshop provides assistance, training, and tips for students seeking to enter the music industry including any type of music (not just Gospel, Jazz, R&B, or Hip Hop).  Robinson is a versatile artist whose listening interests include R&B, Country/Western, and Classical (see February 27 for Rev. Robinson’s bio).  Admission: FREE.

Thursday, February 27 at 12:30 p.m., Music with a Message will be presented in the ACC Theatre, Arts & Community Center (Building #18).  James M. Robinson, Sr. is a traditional, yet contemporary, gospel singer.  His music is a jazz blend of gospel excellence.  In early 2008, Rev. Robinson began writing anointed songs that moved and inspired him and he realized that the time had come to bring his songs to life.  His CD, Jesus Will Say Well Done, features ten original songs that have climbed the music charts in the United States and internationally.  He is often asked, “Why do you put so much effort and energy into your preaching and music ministry?”  His reply is always the same, “So Jesus Christ would one day say ‘Well Done.’”  Admission: FREE.

Friday, February 28 at 12:00 Noon, the Lowering of the Black Flag will be held at the Flag Pole, Campus Mall.  Immediately following, the Black History Month Closing Ceremony will be held in the Solar Lounge, College Center (Building #15).  Admission: FREE.

Saturday, March 1 at 7:00 p.m., the 14th Annual Gospel Show will be held in the ACC Theatre, Arts & Community Center (Building #18).  Enjoy an evening of song, dance, and gospel music.  Admission: $5 adult / $3 senior, student, and children under 12 years of age.  A portion of the proceeds will be donated to OCC’s Organization for Black Unity Scholarship Fund.  Tickets can be purchased at the Student Life Office located in the College Center or call 732-255-0348.

For information, call Dr. Henry Jackson, Interim Dean of Language, Humanities, and Fine Arts, at 732-255-0400, ext. 2257.

All events are subject to change.  Please call ahead for updated schedule.

OCC’s Black History Month events are sponsored by the Organization for Black Unity and the Office of Student Life.