Republic of Benin, Africa to be featured at upcoming Second Saturday Cultural Celebration in Temecula

TEMECULA, Calif., — Continuing their popular monthly Second Saturday Cultural Celebrations, the Temecula Valley Museum in February will be virtually visiting the Republic of Benin, Africa, the place from where the last known slave ship, Clotilda, left in 1850 to deliver slaves to the United States. The event, which is open to the community and free to attend, is scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 12.

Event organizers say the museum’s Second Saturday monthly events help tell the full history of the Temecula Valley, one that embraces the region’s diverse past and the more contemporary offerings of the area’s current citizens. By celebrating a different culture or region each month with food, crafts, activities, and entertainment, the museum’s Second Saturday events share the cultural experiences of area residents while acknowledging the inextricable link between art, culture, history, and community.


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During February’s event, museum guests will have the opportunity to experience the culture of the Republic of Benin through delicious recipes and facts posted online, and in-person through activities including crafts, cultural facts, African Drumming performed by Dream Shapers, and delicious African inspired food provided by Espadίn.

The museum will also offer a special, free, African art lesson provided by Bigfoot Art Classes for guests of all ages.

As Benin was the place where the last known slave ship, Clotilda, left in 1850 to deliver slaves to the United States, the museum will also celebrate the life of Cudjo Lewis (Oluale Kossola), a man imprisoned on that last ship.

Part of the museum’s annual American Black History Month event, attendees will delve into and examine the contributions that he and other Black Americans have made to our country.

Dr. Patricia Justice of GoSteam4Kids will also present portraits of inspirational Black American’s created for this event by Tony Tobin Elementary School Students.


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To embrace diversity and celebrate contemporary life in Temecula, Second Saturday Cultural Celebrations are part of Temecula Valley Museum’s educational and cultural offerings for the community, celebrating the history and heritage of the various and diverse cultures that live in the Temecula Valley.

Future 2022 Second Saturday Cultural Celebrations include:

  • MAR 12 – Estonia
  • APR 9 – Argentina
  • MAY 14 – Guam
  • JUN 11 – Morocco
  • JUL 9 – France
  • AUG 13 – Belgium

Make sure to save the dates and plan on joining others throughout the community in celebrating the region’s rich and diverse history. For more information and other fun online activities, please visit, or call (951) 694-6450.

Contact the writer:

Trevor Montgomery, 50, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source (RCNS) and Shasta County News Source (SCNS).

Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers Valley News, Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; the Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County; and Mountain Echo in Shasta County. He is also a regular contributor to Thin Blue Line TV and Law Enforcement News Network and has had his stories featured on news stations throughout the Southern California and North State regions.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 30 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 18 grandchildren.