March 29th was a special night! At 58 West 129th Street (at Lenox Ave), The National Jazz Museum in Harlem hosted its opening celebration. A lively, diverse crowd participated in the gala event. The opening reception for the National Jazz Museum in Harlem on March 29, 2016. The celebration featured a star-studded list of performers: pianist Marc Cary and his band which included vocalist Terri Davis; tenor saxophonist, Bill Saxton; drummer, Russell Carter; and, bassist, Rahsaan Carter. There were comments by the Loren Schoenberg, Grammy Award-winner and Founding Director; Harold Closter from the Smithsonian institute in which the museum is an affiliate, also addressed attendees, as did Attorney Tim Porter, the New Chairman of the NJMH's Board of Directors. Tim Porter, Esq., Board Chair, National Jazz Museum in Harlem Board Chair Tim Porter noted that the vision for the new NJMH space would include, "providing more educational programming; taking advantage of performance and partnership opportunities afforded by the new location, enhancing our role in Harlem's cultural and civic life, presenting new and exciting exhibits, nurturing emerging talent in the many areas associated with jazz both on and off the band stand, building upon the programs we have successfully operated in other parts of the city, targeting some of our programming where to those who would otherwise miss out on the arts, and all the while continuing to expand, where appropriate, our national and international outreach activities." Among other luminaries in attendance were: Kenneth Knuckles, president and CEO of the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone; Mercedes Ellington, accomplished dancer and granddaughter of Duke Ellington; and Lloyd Williams, CEO of the Harlem Chamber of Commerce. Mercedes Ellington, dancer and granddaughter of jazz legend Duke Ellington, at the opening of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem on March 29, 2016 Photo l to r: Tim Porter, Esq., Board Chair, National Jazz Museum in Harlem; Voza Rivers, Harlem Arts Alliance Board Chairman; George Wein, NEA Jazz Master/Newport Festivals; and Lloyd Williams, CEO, Harlem Chamber of Commerce The purpose of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem is to preserve, promote and present jazz by inspiring knowledge, appreciation, and celebration of jazz locally, nationally and internationally. With the goal of keeping jazz at the forefront of musical visibility and exciting in the lives of a diverse range of audiences. Some of the upcoming events at the museum include: • Urban Design, Jazz and Creativity, Tuesday, Apr 12, 2016, 7:00 pm • Jazz, Baroque Design and Beyond, Tuesday, April 19, 2016, 7:00 pm • Cannonball Adderley – The 1950s, Thursday, April 21, 2016, 7:00 pm For a complete list of activities and events, check out the National Jazz Museum in Harlem's website: www.jazzmuseuminharlem.org I strongly recommend that you visit the National Jazz Museum in Harlem; it's a gem.