BLK RVA is a collaborative initiative between Richmond Region Tourism (RRT) and 20+ community leaders. It promotes African American tourism by illustrating the Richmond region as a multicultural hub that specializes in four pillars: Arts & Entertainment, Food & Drink, Community, and History. Through this initiative, we’re setting out to increase tourism, engage regional residents, and support businesses by showcasing spaces that highlight the Black experience in the Richmond region. Black culture in Richmond is rooted in history, yet rising in its future.
To understand America, we must understand the African-American experience.
From enslavement to presidency, the Black story is the story of the United States. Richmond, Virginia is one of the most important Gateways to that story.The center of the domestic slave trade in North America. The origin of 1 in 4 African-Americans. Home to the Harlem of the south. Birthplace to a new cool that flourishes today. Richmond is a gateway to Black culture. A gateway to our shared history and to our brilliant future. A gateway to Black success and perhaps to a reckoning of racial trauma. A gateway to understanding what it is to live on this continent, and in so doing, to understanding your place in it. In Richmond you will find a gateway to the heart of what it is to be American, and into the Black story that shaped this country.
Lexicon: The words we use and why
Black vs. African-American: African-American to describe people (groups/individuals). Black to describe an experience, culture. Black w/ a capital B.
Slave vs. Enslaved: Enslaved to refer to the state of a person/people. Slave(ry) in reference to the institution.
Richmond vs. RVA: Richmond to be used throughout site w/ RVA to be used in reference to contemporary Richmond experiences.
Urban: Literal definition, not cultural adjective
Richmond Region: Includes Richmond, Chesterfield, Henrico, New Kent, Powhatan, Ashland and Hanover. (RRT refers to entire region, including as RVA)
Richmond is ROOTED & RISING
Rooted Businesses: Richmond’s overflowing with Black businesses that have been rooted in our community for over a decade, securing their legacy and etching their place in our history books. Whether a restaurant, church, or historical landmark, when you think of Black Richmond, you think of their contribution.
Rising Businessess: Richmond’s been named top destination in the country to start a business. We’ve got new restaurants, coffee shops, boutiques, and so much more rising every day to bring fresh, authentic experiences to our region.
Committee Chair: Enjoli Moon
RRT Lead: Katherine O’Donnell
Agency Partner: Ryano Graphics, LLC
Owner: Shannon Bass
John D Watt
Tamera Wilkins Harris