ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The YMCA on Thurston Road in Rochester honored Black History month Friday.

Members and staff came together to honor African American history and experiences. Community members took turns stepping up and sharing their stories.

YMCA President and CEO Ernest Lamour says it’s important, given the history of the Y.

“African American history was founded at the YMCA way back when in 1911 at the Wabash YMCA in Chicago,” he said. “It was a place where many Black folks can find refuge. And so the Y played such an important role in that history and remembering that is extremely important to share with our world.”

The event also featured drumming performances, as well as a showcase of books from Black authors.