#DouglassWeek events in Rochester continue Wednesday

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Rochester’s weeklong celebration of abolitionist Frederick Douglass continues on Wednesday.

#DouglassWeek runs from Monday, July 10 through Sunday, July 16 featuring lectures, performances, and exhibits to celebrate the legacy of Douglass who called Rochester his home for 25 years. The first ever #DouglassWeek celebration took place in Ireland in 2021, followed by Washington, D.C. last year and Rochester this year.

You can see a complete list of daily events for #DouglassWeek here. Here are some of the events:

  • Wednesday: A 5K walk and run will take people to sites important to Douglass around the Park Avenue neighborhood. It starts at 6 p.m. at the Fleet Feet Culver Road Armory and the run/walk will end with cake and conversation back at the store.
  • Thursday and Friday: The Rochester Museum & Science Center is holding a story hour at 11 a.m. with a reading of Frederick’s Journey by Doreen Rappaport. It’s at Kelsey’s Landing rowboat.
  • Saturday: The Hochstein School of Music is celebrating Douglass with an evening of performances and readings starting at 7:30 p.m. Broadway actors will perform original songs exploring Frederick Douglass’ travels in Ireland. PJ Pennewell of Garth Fagan Dance will also perform. In addition, the great-great-great-grandson of Frederick Douglass and others read the work of Kenneth B. Morris, Jr.
  • Sunday: Community members will honor the Douglass family gravesite at Mount Hope Cemetery at 10 a.m.

Douglass published The North Star newspaper in Rochester to speak out against slavery. He also delivered his acclaimed speech “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?” at Rochester’s Corinthian Hall. The speech celebrated its 171st anniversary on July 5.

Kenneth Morris Jr., Douglass’ great-great-great grandson, says the celebrations are in Rochester this year because of the legacy Douglass left behind.

“This is the adopted hometown of Frederick and Anna and the Douglass family who, by the way, was a radical freedom, fighting collective,” Morris said. “So we’ve got a series of events that are virtual and in person in partnership with Ireland and also Scottland and England. Do this is an event that is celebrated around the world because we know that Frederick Douglass was an international figure.”