'Crossing Fences' to launch citywide

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An oral history project that engages African-American men and boys in conversation about the important things in life is releasing a second edition of its "Crossing Fences" series this week.

In "Crossing Fences," groups of teens interviewed men from their neighborhoods whose lives, achievements and work make them positive and inspiring role models. The interview subjects included business owners, musicians and educators. They shared stories and discussions on careers, parenting, positive values, spirituality and more.

The project included people from three communities -- North Side, Hilltop communities (Beltzhoover, Arlington, Mount Oliver and others) and McKeesport.

"Crossing Fences" is presented by SLB Radio Productions, which produces the weekly "Saturday Light Brigade" radio show.

The interviews were recorded and will be released on CDs with a companion book and will be archived at SLB's Neighborhood Voices archive for media produced by children and teens (neighborhoodvoices.org/crossingfences).

SLB is hosting a series of free neighborhood events to mark the "Crossing Fences" launch. The people who took part in the project will be there, and copies of the CD will be given to guests:

Hilltop Celebration: 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at the McKinley Park Recreation Center, 900 Delmont Ave., Beltzhoover.

North Side Celebration: 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday at The Cafe 'n' Creamery, 2700 Shadeland Ave., North Side.

McKeesport Celebration: 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday at McKeesport Library, 1507 Library Ave., McKeesport.

Citywide Celebration: 6 to 8 p.m. Nov. 20 at the August Wilson Center for African American Culture, Downtown. RSVP for the Wilson Center event at: tinyurl.com/CrossingFences2013.

Adrian McCoy: amccoy@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1865.

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