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Sunday, Sept. 12, is National Grandparents Day

Grandparents: Love, Culture & History

Sunday, Sept. 12, is National Grandparents Day—honoring the roles that grandparents play in nurturing and stabilizing families.

In 1978, Congress passed legislation that earmarked the first Sunday after Labor Day as National Grandparents Day. The day recognizes that, throughout history, grandparents have played significant roles in families. It is a day to recognize, educate, and celebrate the important contributions grandparents have made throughout history.

This year marks the third annual local Grandparents Day celebration hosted by the Mayor’s Council on African American Elders and Northwest African American Museum (NAAM). Co-sponsors include AARP Seattle, Age Friendly Seattle, Aging and Disability Services, Seattle Human Services Department (HSD), Nu Black Arts West Theatre, and The Evergreen State College/Tacoma.

“Grandparents: Love, Culture & History” will be offered virtually (online) from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. and feature a short program and entertainment. Everyone is welcome, free of charge. To receive the event link, register at

The main Grandparents Day presenter is Dr. Marcia Tate Arunga, an educator, activist, author, entrepreneur, and the first-ever dean of the Evergreen State College, Tacoma Campus. In 1982, Arunga moved to Kenya, where she raised four children. She wrote “The Stolen Ones and How They Were Missed,” a children’s book about a girl who was taken from her African home to serve in the slave trade and what happened at the village she was taken from (available through the public library).

The program will also feature the NAAM African American Cultural Ensemble and spoken word poetry by “Nana” Kibibi (Kibibi Monié), director of Nu Black Arts West Theatre, the oldest African American theater company in Washington state.

“Honoring our grandparents is a significant practice in African American culture,” said HSD/Aging and Disability Services planner Karen Winston, who staffs the Mayor’s Council on African American Elders. “Whether through discipline, financial support and/or kinship caregiving, grandparents have always been a vital part of our families and they provide important links to our cultural heritage and family history.”

Following the 2 p.m. program, NAAM and AARP will present an encore program featuring award-winning author Jewell Parker Rhodes, who will discuss her soon-to-be-released book, Paradise Under Fire, about a teenage girl and her grandmother growing closer together. The 3 p.m. program will air live on NAAM’s YouTube Channel. All are welcome.

Event flyer (PDF):

Event flyer (JPG):



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