Lynn Haven honors annual Black History Month 2023

Community Event


The public is invited to join friends, family, and the community, as the City of Lynn Haven celebrates Black History Month. To begin, all are encouraged to visit Sharon Sheffield Park to view a display of Black History Month banners. The banners highlight prominent African American leaders in Bay County and will be hung all month long. The city will host local artist Ricky Steele’s artwork at the Lynn Haven Senior Activity Club during the second week of the month. Ricky Steele will be present for a “Speak with the Artist Showcase” at the Senior Activity Club on February 6th from 4-6PM, and his artwork will remain on display from Noon to 4:30PM on February 7th and 8th. On February 13th, the city will recognize the first person to celebrate Black History Month in Lynn Haven and the first City of Lynn Haven African American Commissioner, Leon Miller.  At the January 24th city commission meeting Mayor Jesse Nelson read a proclamation declaring the second Monday of every February to be Leon Miller Day. On February 13th Mayor Nelson will additionally hold a Town Hall Meeting at the Lynn Haven Garden Club, located at 307 Ohio Avenue where he will speak about Public Safety.

On February 16th from 9AM-1PM, the city will host its 4th Annual Community Health Fair located at the Senior Activity Club. The health fair is a free community event designed to encourage healthy lifestyles, preventative care, disease management, and to connect the public to health resources. The next day, residents are invited to attend a Movie in the Park event at Sharon Sheffield Park featuring a free showing of Marvel’s Black Panther. The event begins at 5:30PM, with the movie beginning at 6PM; free kettle corn and Coca-Cola products will be provided while supplies last.

The following week, the famous traveling Blacks in Wax Museum will make its way to the Senior Activity Club. Wax figures featuring historically influential people including James Weldon Johnson, Mary Elizabeth Bowser, Mary Eliza Mahoney, Granville T. Woods, and Zora Neale Hurston will be on display from February 21st between 5PM-7PM, through the 24th.  Guest speaker Dr. Joanne Martin will give a presentation on the museum’s 2023 theme, “Being Literate, Being Free.” The free exhibit will remain open on February 22nd and 24th from 9AM-4:30PM and on February 23rd from 10AM-6PM. Please contact the Marketing and Communications team if local schools and other organizations are interested in scheduling a group tour and presentation.

Closing Black History Month presentations will commence on February 27th and conclude on February 28th at the Senior Activity Club. The event will focus on youth talents by displaying and recognizing their artwork and writings. Various schools will be participating in Black History Month projects so that students can share the knowledge they have gained. The gallery will display various artwork; including photographs, artifacts, and documents, for visitors to enjoy on the day of the program. Local organizations will be set up to provide information about their organization and educate attendees about their group. These exhibits will be open to the public for all to enjoy on February 27th and 28th from 10AM-3:30PM. The closing reception will begin at 2PM on February 28th, where light refreshments will be available along with a guest speaker from 3PM-3:30PM. First, second, and third place prizes for artwork and writings will also be awarded to students during the reception.

City Manager Vickie Gainer stated, “We are proud to continue this tradition for the 4th year. We are excited to host these events for the public to enjoy as we celebrate Black History Month throughout February. These events are a time for our community to come together and recognize all the good that African Americans have contributed to our area and beyond. It is also a way to pave an open and welcoming dialogue for discussing these inventors, politicians, artists, and activists who still may not be commonly known”.  Please contact the Marketing and Communications team at [email protected] or 850-248-0530 for more information.