Maxwell, Tamron Hall, Susan L. Taylor and Michael Eric Dyson honor the legendary Cicely Tyson, Tarana Burke and Rev. Barber II

Photos/Videos and article by: Jovanna Reyes


The Grammys 2018 week ended with a celebration for acclaimed activist and actress, Cicely Tyson and to help raise funds for the National Cares Mentoring Movement.  Created by Editor Emeritus of Essence Magazine, Susan L. Taylor, soon after the Katrina storm in 2006, the Cares Movement recruits and trains Black adults to mentor children in need and in crisis.  The national organization has grown exponentially in just a few years.  Visit for more information on how to volunteer and donate.

The audience was treated to the gracefulness of beautiful ballerinas from Ms. Tyson’s namesake school, the Cicely Tyson Community School of Performing and Fine Arts located in East Orange, N.J.  The gala was hosted by Tamron Hall(journalist) and Michael Eric Dyson(Professor and author) with singer Maxwell serenading the audience.


The gala also honored Tarana Burke(creator of #MeToo movement) and Reverend Dr. William J. Barber II, whose speeches were moving and inspired the crowd to extend themselves beyond their comfort zone to make a difference and help those in need.

Many celebrities graced the red carpet and supported the Cares Gala with their presence and donations.  Monifah(singer/R&B Divas), Roland Martin(journalist), Judge Mablean, Sunny Hostin(The View), Jussie Smollett(Empire), Debra Lee(BET) and many more.

Please visit or their social media @cares_mentoring.

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Columbia turns 50 with Books in Bloom festival and the Architects of Air

Columbia, Maryland turned fifty this week.  The progressive community created by developer, Jim Rouse, will continue celebrating throughout the month with special events.  Visit for more information. The highlight of the Columbia Festival of Arts was the free opening of the Architects of Air: Katena Luminarium.

The air filled structure is based on the catenary curve.  The shape created when a chain is suspended between two points.  The luminarium is filled with over a hundred catenary curves and a main dome that resembles a temple(the green tipped dome in the photo below).

The Architects of Air continues their worldwide tour with their next U.S. opening in Bethlehem, PA.  Visit their site for more information, Architects of Air on tour.



A balloon artist entertained the children as they waited to enter the Katena Luminarium.


Earlier in the week, the Downtown Columbia Partnership presented Books in Bloom as part of Columbia’s 50th birthday celebration.  The event featured top celebrities such as April Ryan, White House correspondent, CNN political analyst and Bureau Chief for American Urban Radio Networks, Chimamanda Adichie and Michael Eric Dyson, Georgetown University sociology professor and radio host.  The highlight of the inaugural festival was the panel discussion hosted by civil rights activist, DeRay McKesson in the Chrysalis amphitheater, adjacent to the Merriweather Post Pavilion.

The authors, April D. Ryan and Michael Eric Dyson discussed their books and opinions on race, the use of the “n” word and former President Barack Obama. They later signed books and had photo opportunities for their fans and attendees.