Killeen celebrates culture with music, community at downtown event | Local News

Anitra Hicks, a local artist with works and performances online, performs at Saturday’s Culture on the Square in downtown Killeen.

Culture on the Square, a semi-annual celebration of Killeen’s diverse community hosted by the Innovation Black Chamber of Commerce (IBCC), kicked off Saturday afternoon in downtown Killeen to the sound of local performers and the buzz of conversation.

IBCC president Ronnie Russell said Saturday that the event is an opportunity to “see past where we are to where we want to go.”

In total, about 60 people could be seen milling around Avenue D, moving from booth to booth to buy local products, eating food, and stopping to listen to performers rap, perform slam poetry, sing and play instruments. Performers were all selected beforehand, and included published artists like Anitra Hicks and non-published community members like drummers Robert Riley and Aveon Allen, both 13.

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13-year-olds Aveon Allen, left, and Robert Riley, right, sip on a cold drink after performing at Saturday’s Culture on the Square event.

Russell explained that one of the focuses of the event was on “providing exposure for kids,” and that the organization partnered with Rancier Middle School.

The IBCC also hosted a “kids corner” for small children, featuring a mechanical puppet show.

Other activities at the event included multiple raffle drawings for items like blanket sets, kids items and more, an IBCC representative said.

The event concluded at 8:30 pm with a scavenger hunt, which IBCC representatives said was open to the Killeen community.

Bell County Commissioner Precinct 2 candidates Bobby Whitson (R) and Stacey Wilson (D) were present at the event, as was state House District 54 candidate Jonathan Hildner (D).

The Killeen Police Department was at the event to provide security.

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Jorge Oliveira

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