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Black History Spotlight on Our Community

Today we celebrate legendary contributors, past, present and future!

Remembering the Remarkable Helen Shipp - Founder of the OC Black History Parade

With a mission to celebrate the African American community and cultural inclusivity, Helen Shipp founded the OC Black History Parade in 1980 in the city of Santa Ana. The inaugural parade started small with 8 people. Over the years, the parade grew to attract 10,000 spectators from around the world. In 2010, due to the need to find a more permanent and cost effective location, the parade found a new home in the heart of Anaheim.

When Mrs. Ship passed on in 2018, her son, Dwayne Shipp, stepped up to carry on his mother's legacy. In 2020, Dwayne was recognized for his efforts in continuing the important celebration. With a global pandemic pausing this year's in-person OC Black History Parade & Unity Festival, Dwayne quickly pivoted to adapt the celebration as a virtual event for 2021.

The Orange County Heritage Council cordially invites you to reflect on the parade, as well as interact with special guests Tyrone Dubois (musician), Brian Peterson (FACES of Santa Ana), and Natalie Collins (Poet/Performer). Register and tune in this Wednesday, February 24, 2021 at 3PM.

Made With Love

We also celebrate the accomplishments of our own Gretchen "Nana" Shoemaker, as well as her daughter Nika Shoemaker-Machado. Georgia's Restaurant, one of the best soul food restaurants in Orange County, started as a small catering company. Check out our Made In Anaheim blog, featuring Nana's story, including how the restaurant came to be and who the restaurant is named after.

Recently, Nika and Nana were featured sharing their cooking tips with the Good Day LA team on Big Game Day eats!

Sowing Seeds in Our Community

The newest business to plant seeds in our community, Poppy & Seed, is the brain child of husband and wife power couple, Kwini and Chef Michael Reed! We are ecstatic to welcome this American small-plate, farm-to-fork restaurant and bar to the greenhouse at Farmers Park this March. Keep an eye out for their limited pre-opening menu, "Little Poppy," for a sneak peek of what's soon to come.

If you think the Reeds look familiar, it may be because you have seen them at their flagship restaurant in the Flower District of Downtown LA: Poppy and Rose. Perhaps you recognize them from their heroic efforts in feeding thousands of frontline workers as featured recently on the Ellen Show, or maybe you have benefitted from their education work in the community, preparing people with limited resources for careers in the restaurant industry.

Follow @poppyandseedoc on Instagram for future updates as Poppy and Seed blossoms!

If you want to get to know them even better, listen to a wonderful interview on The Best Ceats Show: Ep 39 [Search on: iTunes Podcast, Spotify].

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