The reception was not just a formal gathering but a lively celebration that featured enthralling performances by dance and singing teams from St. Cloud High School and Neptune Middle School. These performances added a dynamic layer of entertainment and cultural expression, captivating attendees with their talent and enthusiasm for the event.
A significant highlight of the evening was the display of artwork by local Florida artists, a collaboration made possible through the partnership with Osceola Arts and the diligent efforts of art curator Marilyn Cortez Lovato. The art, showcased on every floor of the City Hall, was contributed by artists Al Latorre, Eric Wise, Grey Sturgill, Renee Elizabeth, Segun Aberedolu, Kiaunti Shuler, and Tre Mark Harris. Each piece served as a reflection of the diverse experiences and rich history of the African American community, offering attendees a visual journey through the themes of Black heritage and identity.
The event was attended by key city officials, including Mayor Olga Gonzalez, City Commissioner Janette Martinez, and Vice-Mayor Olga Castano, underscoring the importance of the occasion to Kissimmee’s leadership. The reception, well-attended by the community, also featured food and beverages, adding to the warm and welcoming atmosphere of the event.
This year’s Annual Black History Month Reception at Kissimmee City Hall was more than just an event; it was a vibrant celebration of Black history, art, and culture that brought together the community in a meaningful way. Through dance, song, and visual art, the city of Kissimmee paid homage to the profound contributions of African Americans, fostering a deeper appreciation and understanding of Black history among all attendees.
During the Kissimmee commission meeting that directly followed the reception, the city proclaimed February as Black History Month in Kissimmee, and proclaimed Tuesday February 6, 2024 as Pastor Michael Douglas Young Appreciation Day.