Celebrate Women's History Month in the Upstate

Since 1987, the United States has officially observed National Women’s History Month during the month of March, to recognize and celebrate American women and their achievements. In the early 1970s women’s history was virtually left out of public school curriculum and in mainstream media but in 1978, a task force in Sonoma County, California initiated a “Women’s History Week” celebration and within a few years had dozens of schools planning special programs as well as hundreds of community events.

As word spread rapidly across the nation, state departments of education encouraged celebrations of National Women’s History Week as an effective means to achieving equity goals within classrooms. Organizations sponsored essay contests and other special programs in their local areas. Within a few years, thousands of schools and communities were celebrating National Women’s History Week, supported and encouraged by resolutions from governors, city councils, school boards, and the U.S. Congress.

In 1987, the National Women’s History Project petitioned Congress to expand the national celebration to the entire month of March. Each year, programs and activities in schools, workplaces, and communities have become more extensive as information and program ideas have been developed and shared.

Now, each year, the President of the United States issues a Presidential Proclamation to encourage communities across the nation to honor great women who have shaped our history and here in the Upstate we have several celebrations to honor those great women.

Women’s History Film Series at Oconee Heritage Center

The Oconee Heritage Center will be screening a series of both documentaries and feature films about women throughout the month, including She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry on March 2nd, 9 to 5 on March 9th, Miss Representation on March 16th, A League of Their Own on March 23rd, and Dark Girls on March 30th. All films are Tuesday evenings at 7:00 p.m., and admission is free.

Women’s Conferences

The Greenwood County Chamber of Commerce and Lander University will host the fourth annual Women’s Leadership Conference on Friday, March 10th, from 8:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Offering opportunities for networking as well as a variety of speakers, workshops, and exhibits, the full day promises to “inspire, empower, and motivate” women (cost: $99 per person). And on Saturday, March 18th, the eighth annual Women’s Empowerment Conference will be held at the Westside Community Center in Anderson. The $12 admission fee includes continental breakfast and lunch.

Peace Center’s Poet in Residence Honors Women’s History Month

As part of the Peace Center’s Poetic Conversations series, poet in residence Glenis Redmond will be joined by author Kathleen Nalley Moore to share works focusing on and honoring women. The event is free, but space is limited; RSVP to tzira@peaccenter.org. The event will be held on March 31st at 7:00 p.m. in the Ramsaur Studio.

For other local events, please visit the OurUpstateSC.info event calendar.

Sherry Jackson is a freelance writer, editor and entrepreneur. Her articles have been featured in InfoWorld Magazine,Entrepreneur.com, USA Today, Blue Ridge Country, Jetsetter, Bootsnall, Gadling, Yahoo, See the South, Beckett Media, The Simpsonville Sentinel and many other print and online publications. For clips and examples of her work, please visit her website at www.dragonflyventures.com.