The celebration, called the Harlem/HarlanRenaissance, capitalized on the work of local musicians, artists and dancers. It was produced and planned by Charlotte Nolan, with Rose Cohelia serving as the curator.
Presented by the Artists' Attic, the festivities began with a welcoming by Nolan.
Nolan read a thank you letter penned by Robert Major, the premier artist of the evening who could not be present. Major is a Harlan native and is currently pursuing a Masters in Art at the School of Art Institute in Chicago. Many pieces of his work were on display at the celebration.
Second on the list of events was a number of songs by the Harlan Community Choir, which sang religious selections such as "Swing Low Sweet Chariot" and the black national anthem, "Lift Every Voice and Sing." The choir was directed by Teresa Henry.
Following the songs was a reading by the Rev. Don Renfro, pastor of the Clover Street Church of Christ. He read the poem "The Creation" by James Weldon Johnson, a poet and teacher from the Harlem Renaissance.
Local artist Jeff Chapman-Crane unveiled a portrait of the Rev. Renfro's wife, Brenda Renfro. The painting was titled "Sanctuary." The painting subject sat with her eyes lowered and her hands positioned in an attitude of prayer.
As the portrait was unveiled, many "oohs" and "ahhs" reverberated throughout the audience.
Other performers included the black male acappella group, the Tri-City Messengers. They were followed by Debbie Hampton's reading of the slave poem, "North Star Shining."
Hampton introduced the Greater Mount Sinai Youth Group prior to their interpretive dance performance of the song, "Now Behold the Lamb."
At the end of the evening, Nancy Johnson gave closing remarks. She called on the parents of the community to raise the moral standards of their children.
"We have gone down a slippery slope," she warned. "We have strayed in courage we've become complacent. We've also strayed in our morality and in respect."
Johnson also implored parents to push their children to study more, to dress in a modest and decent manner; to have respect for teachers, superiors and property.
The evening closed with a reception, during which participants were able to view Major's work.