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Robust Series of Events Commemorated African American History Month at Riderwood

March 16, 2016

Silver Spring, Maryland—Riderwood retirement community recently completed a comprehensive series of events and celebrations in February to commemorate African American History Month.  Topics ranged from health, music and current events as the resident-led African American History Club coordinated the activities. On February 5, a panel of health care experts provided advice on heart health as the "Go Red Riderwood" program mirrored the American Heart Association's national Go Red For Women campaign.  Participants included Dr. Valeriani Bead, cardiologist with the MedStar Health System, Marquita Parker, fitness specialist with Riderwood, and Kelly Murphy, a dietician with Riderwood. Music literally took center stage with a pair of concerts.  The Howard University Jazz Ensemble (February 6) and the Colesville United Methodist Church Gospel Choir (February 19 and co-sponsored by the Performing Arts Council) entertained residents and guests in the community's Encore Theater. Last but not least, Riderwood hosted Dr. Jacquelyn Days Serwer, Chief Curator of the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of African American History and Culture, on February 25. Dr. Serwer provided an update on the purpose, history and future of the new museum that is currently under construction at the National Mall and scheduled to open in the fall of 2016.  The presentation was co-sponsored by the Riderwood Diversity & Inclusion Committee and the African American History Club. Throughout the month, residents, employees and visitors received a free history lesson just by walking throughout the campus.  Display cases adjacent to the chapel and in community buildings featured items and photographs that highlighted African American achievements in spirituality, music, culinary pursuits, military affairs and business.  Coordinated by resident Levern Allen, this year's theme was "Remembered and Reclaimed."  Finally, resident historian Dorothy Stephens wrote profiles of notable African Americans that were broadcast on the community's in-house television station, Riderwood TV, throughout the month. About Riderwood:  Riderwood is one of eighteen continuing care retirement communities managed by Erickson Living.  Located in Silver Spring, Maryland, the scenic 120-acre campus is home to more than 2,500 residents.  Riderwood is the ideal greater Washington, D.C. retirement destination offering a true sense of community, convenience beyond compare and a sensible financial structure.