About Kwanzaa

Kwanzaa is an African American and Pan-African holiday which celebrates family, community and culture. Celebrated from 26 December thru 1 January, its origins are in the first harvest celebrations of Africa from which it takes its name.

The name Kwanzaa is derived from the phrase "matunda ya kwanza" which means "first fruits" in Swahili. Spoken widely in East Africa, Swahili is a Pan-African language, selected by the Sixth Pan African Congress in Tanzania to be the international lingua franca of African people.

Kwanzaa was founded in 1966 by Ron (Maulana) Karenga, founder of the US Organization.

Reference: Origins of Kwanzaa

"Fighting for US: Maulana Karenga, the US Organization and Black Cultural Nationalism" by Scott Brown


Bay Area Kwanzaa

The purpose of this page is to provide Bay Area residents information about Kwanzaa events. The information on this page is courtesy of the Bay Area Kwanzaa Committee and The Village Project and other Kwanzaa event organizers.


Altar at 2008 Kwanzaa Ujamma Celebration at Lake Merritt Boat House in Oakland.
Photo by The Black Hour


Watch more Kwanzaa videos.

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