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Las Vegas celebrates start of Kwanzaa

Posted at 6:22 PM, Dec 26, 2021

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Christmas is over, but Sunday marks the start of another special holiday: Kwanzaa.

Kwanza is a seven-day holiday meant to celebrate the African-American culture.

For some Las Vegas locals, this holiday is more than just a holiday.

“Every other culture has a holiday in which they celebrate their heritage. They celebrate, they wear their African attire. They play their music, they eat their food. And more importantly, they pass their cultures down to the youth. We did not have such a holiday, but now we do, and it is Kwanzaa," Omiyale Jube said.

The West Las Vegas Library hosted Soul of Kwanza, an event to highlight Kwanzaa and the African-American culture, which included live performances and cultural displays.

The holiday is celebrated from Dec. 26 to Jan. 1, and apart from seven days includes seven principles and symbols.

“And it’s representative of bringing us together as a people, as a community, as African American people on this planet and Africans around all the diaspora," Jube said.

The seven symbols of Kwanzaa include the candle holder, placemat, crops, corn gifts, and unity holder.

“Growing up, we didn’t have a cultural holiday," Jube said. "When I was growing up, I believed that my history started in this country with slavery. I now know better. Now that I celebrate Kwanzaa, I celebrate my history a little bit earlier than that. Celebrating Kwanzaa allows our youth, our children, our people to study their history. Our history was stripped from us; this is a way to bring it back."