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5 ways to celebrate Women’s History Month

Today marks International Women’s Day, and every year, March represents Women’s History Month. The theme for Women’s History Month in 2021 captures the spirit of these challenging times. Since many of the women’s suffrage centennial celebrations originally scheduled for 2020 were postponed, the National Women’s History Alliance is extending the annual theme for 2021 to “Valiant Women of the Vote: Refusing to Be Silenced.”

The city of Chicago is the perfect place to find a variety of events and exhibits honoring Women’s History Month or, due to the pandemic, there are virtual options to celebrate from the comfort of your own home.

Here are five events and exhibits happening this month, both virtually or in the Chicago area, to celebrate Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day in 2021.

1. Bethel New Life, Celebrating Women Making History

Attend Women’s History Month Webinar Spotlighting Chicago’s Leading Women

To celebrate Women’s History Month, Bethel New Life will hold a Celebrating Women Making History webinar on Monday, March 8, 2021, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. The webinar is free to the public.

Click here to register. The Zoom link will be sent to all registrants.

Its purpose is to highlight the contributions of women to events in history and contemporary society. Bethel is taking the opportunity to acknowledge great women who are accomplishing great things; to spotlight women who are forging change and transforming lives every day; and to celebrate our rich relationships and the future. The webinar will feature a performance by Move Me Soul-Dance Company, as well as a panel of distinguished Chicago women.

2. Women’s History Minute: Ida B. Wells

Watch this short YouTube video to learn her name and story

Learn more about the visionary leader Ida B. Wells, a key advocate for justice during the 19th century.

Ida B. Wells was a prominent journalist, activist and researcher in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In her lifetime, she battled sexism, racism and violence. As a skilled writer, Wells also used her skills as a journalist to shed light on the conditions of African Americans throughout the South.

Click here to watch the YouTube video, curated by the National Women’s History Museum.

3. ‘One Hundred Women: Collaborations Beyond the Veil’

Visit the Exhibit at Legler Regional Library, located on 115 S. Pulaski Road

“One Hundred Women: Collaborations Beyond the Veil” by Chicago artist Ginny Sykes is an exhibit celebrating the centennial of women’s suffrage, on display in the lobby of Legler Regional Library. The exhibit will be available for public viewing through April 30.

Sykes created the exhibit to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th amendment and the suffragists who made this amendment possible. “Collaborations Beyond the Veil” challenges the way women are, and are not, traditionally memorialized in public spaces by displaying realistic photographs of living and diverse women. 

Click here for more information on the exhibit.

4. First but Not the Last: Women Who Ran for President

Explore the Online Exhibit by the National Women’s History Museum

In the 21st century, a little girl can say that she wants to grow up to be president of the United States. Even though no woman has yet ascended to the highest office, few would contradict the possibility of her achieving that goal.

Learn more about barrier-breaking women who ran for office and ensured women were present wherever decisions are being made.

Click here to view the online exhibit.

5. Brave Girls Virtual Story Time: Ambitious Girl

Join the Zoom session, hosted by the National Women’s History Museum

Attend this Zoom session with illustrator Marissa Valdez as she reads her most recent illustrated work, Ambitious Girl, by Meena Harris, and discusses her journey as a visual artist.

Written by author Meena Harris, Vice President Kamala Harris’ niece, and illustrated by Marissa Valdez, Ambitious Girl tells the story of discovery through past, present and future about the challenges faced by women and girls and the ways in which they can reframe, redefine and reclaim words meant to knock them down.

When: March 24, 2021, 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. CDT

Click here to register for the free virtual event.

For even more ways to celebrate Women’s History Month, click here.

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