Celebrating Black History Month with arts, food and music at the Mill

Old Sugar Mill’s Arts & Crafters event featured Black creators


Dominique Williams

The Black History Month Arts & Crafters Event at The Old Sugar Mill in Clarksburg, California on Sunday. Black artists and crafters appear at the show, as well as food vendors and wine tasting.

Dominique Williams and Anh Nguyen

CLARKSBURG, California — Black History Month Arts & Crafter’s Show 2022 at Old Sugar Mill marked its third year in collaboration with Cain Event Planning and Brick House Gallery & Art Complex. 

Twenty to 25 established and emerging Black artists, crafters and small businesses were featured at Sunday’s event, along with 15 to 20 other vendors. 

The purpose of celebrating and having a Black History Month event here at the Mill is to bring out Black artists and art markers and give them an opportunity to share their arts and have a connection with the community, according to Barbara Range, director and curator of the Brick House Gallery & Art Complex located in Oak Park.

Shawntay Gorman, one of the event’s curators and featured artists, said she personally picked and reached out to local artists who have positive products to show. Gorman described this event as a rare, unique and helpful opportunity to support Black-owned and small business owners. 

The annual event is co-sponsored by Cain Event Planning, Old Sugar Mill and the Brick House Gallery & Art Complex. This year marked its third year in collaboration with these groups, and its third sponsored  Black History Month event.

The Arts and Crafters first took place in 2019 and was postponed in 2021 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Range.

Old Sugar Mill presented art, crafters, vendors, shopping, live music and wine tasting with free admission. The venue provided food and wine tasting from four food trucks on-site and 14 tasting rooms for additional charges.

When asked about how this event is different from other events that honor Black History Month, Range said she doesn’t do comparisons. 

“This is really just an opportunity to be able to share art,” Range said. “It is all about creating joy… and socializing with one another and then learning about different artists, [and] Black history.”