Friday, February 29, 2008

Podcamp NYC 2.0 has been rescheduled for April 25-26, 2008

Podcamp NYC 2.0, originally slated to begin today and end tomorrow, has been rescheduled for April 25-26, 2008. Whew! Even though this is a leap year, there's so much to do and so little time this month and next. Gathering around the Podcamp site in late April works much better for me. Moreover, say the organizers:
We decided to move Podcamp NYC to April 25 & 26 rather than the original dates for a couple of reasons, including less chance of this crazy winter weather this year impacting the event, and to take advantage of the great outdoor space at Polytechnic University, as well as to give us organizers some more time to make the event special. We want to have the best event possible, and this was a date that worked better for us and worked for our venue as well.
You can read about the Podcamp NYC 2.0 Theme (Education), venue (the Marriott-Brooklyn Bridge), speakers and confabs here.###

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Get wild today! Celebrate African American History Month at the Bronx Zoo

If you're in the New York metropolitan area, get wild today! Come celebrate African American History month at the Bronx Zoo. As Bronx Zoo News and Events reads:

Wednesday February 20: Pay-What-You-Wish Day!

Join us on Wednesday, February 20 to celebrate African-American culture and wildlife. Catch the beat of drum and dance performances, make your own jewelry, and visit gorillas, giraffes, and other animals that call African jungles and savannas home.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Black History Month, Video: "The first white man I ever saw was black"

The Alaska Highway (also known as the Alaska-Canadian - or Alcan - Highway), was built in eight months in 1942. The international roadway - which extended 1,523 miles (2,451 kilometers) northwest from Dawson Creek, British Columbia to Fairbanks, Alaska and navigated through some challenging virgin territory - was nicknamed the "Oilcan Highway" by the United States servicemen who built it, discarding empty oil containers along the way. Sources at>>Alaska Highway report: over 10,000 American soldiers, approximately one-third of them black, constructed the highway as "an emergency war measure to provide an overland military supply route" to military forces in Alaska during World War II.

Completing the Alcan Highway, in record time, "was a significant engineering feat because of the difficulties of terrain and weather." On the human side, bitterly cold temperatures and frostbite sent some troops searching for warmer clothing and shelter.

During one such foray, recounts Modern Marvels: Alcan Highway, some black soldiers stumbled upon a Canadian Indian village. They left a lasting impression. Years later, one villager remarked: "The first white man I ever saw was black."

As this is Black History Month, and I am a Veteran's History Project Official Partner, I highly recommend watching this informative, inspirational History Channel program. Modern Marvels: Alcan Highway shares many incredible stories about the construction of an engineering marvel, about the creation of landmark sites (such as Signpost Forest at Watson Lake, pictured below right), and about black soldiers who persevered - and made heroic contributions - despite segregation and racial discrimination during an already-challenging project.
For example, heavy construction equipment was in scarce supply and was assigned only to white troops. This left the black servicemen vulnerable to untrue accusations that they were too ignorant to use heavy machinery. In response, some creatively assertive black soldiers disproved that vicious rumor, and substantially contributed to the roadway's completion, by "borrowing" heavy equipment from sleeping white troops at night and using it to build miles of roadway before daybreak. In the morning, white servicemen would awaken to find their machinery intact, and long, new stretches of roadway punctuated by signs that read: "Completed by [Black Regiment's Name]."

That's not all. There's much more to Modern Marvels: Alcan Highway. Get the complete story on VHS or on the History Channel.