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Berks Women’s History Alliance Kicks Off the Berks Suffrage 2020 Centennial

by Berks Women's History Alliance

Feb 04, 2020

To ensure the health and safety of our community, this event has been cancelled. We are making arrangements to record the performance of “System Shakers and Barrier Breakers: The Suffragists” in order to make it available for the general public online. More information TBA.

Reading, PA – The Berks Women’s History Alliance, in partnership with the Berks History Center, will kick-off the Berks Suffrage 2020 Centennial, a county-wide, nonpartisan initiative to commemorate 100 years of women having the right to vote, on March 14, 2020 at the Berks History Center, located at 940 Centre Ave. Reading, PA 19601.

The event, held from 10:00am-12:00pm, will explore the struggle that led to the passing of the 19th Amendment 100 years ago through a dynamic presentation of history and entertainment. Women’s historian, Hallie Vaughan, will portray the influential suffragist, Alice Paul and share the history of the women’s suffrage movement in America. Following the program, participants will enjoy a theatrical performance of “System Shakers and Barrier Breakers: The Suffragists,” a play written and performed by Berks County women. Led by Rainbow Theatre Director, Carol Toomey, the play features the stories of famous suffragists like Ann Hutchinson, Ida B. Tarbell and Harriet Tubman.

Admission is $8.00 for non-members, and $5.00 for members of the Berks History Center. Pre-purchase is required. Call 610-375-4375 to register or visit All seating is first come, first served. Doors open at 9:00am.

In anticipation of the 100th Anniversary of Women’s Suffrage Movement in America this year, a group of nonprofits, educational institutions and individuals formed the Berks Women’s History Alliance to provide a framework for Berks County’s celebration of 100 years of women having the right to vote.

Under the banner The Berks Suffrage 2020 Centennial, the Alliance promotes activities and exhibits of its member groups, encourages widespread community participation, and provides networking opportunities for interested organizations and individuals.

The Berks Suffrage 2020 Centennial will be celebrated throughout the year in Berks County alongside the Reading Symphony Orchestra’s Celebration of Women in the Arts, a county-wide initiative to focus on female artists in all genres, featuring works created in multi-disciplinary art forms and facilitating a greater collaboration amongst our community. In addition to partnering with the Berks History Center and the Berks Women’s History Alliance, RSO is planning the celebration with the Berks Arts Council, the Reading Musical Foundation, the Reading Public Museum and the Miller Center for the Arts (Reading Area Community College. The Celebration of Women in the Arts will include special exhibits, presentations and education programs from January to June 2020.

“As we look down the long lens of history and celebrate this historic milestone, we bring into clear focus the profoundly American right of each citizen to participate in our democratic process,” said Penny Guido, one of the leaders of the Berks Women’s History Alliance. “This 100 year anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment to win women the vote reaffirms for all of us not just the right to vote but the privilege and obligation of voting.”

To learn more about Women’s Suffrage and The Berks Suffrage 2020 Centennial go to Also you can check out the women’s suffrage articles on our face book page at:

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