LIST: Juneteenth events planned across Central Virginia

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RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Juneteenth celebrations are happening across Central Virginia as people celebrate the longstanding tradition that became a national holiday just this week.

Juneteenth is the commemoration of when the last enslaved people in the United States were told that they had been freed by President Abraham Lincoln’s signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. Lincoln signed the Executive Order on Jan. 1, 1863, but enslaved people in Texas were not notified of their freedom until June 19, 1865 – more than two years after they were freed.

In October 2020, Virginia lawmakers passed legislation marking June 19 as a state holiday. On Tuesday, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed a bill to make Juneteenth a national holiday. The U.S. House then also passed a bill for the federal holiday on Wednesday before Pres. Joe Biden signed the bill into law on Thursday, June 17.

Juneteenth flag
The Juneteenth flag, commemorating the day that slavery ended in the U.S., flies in Omaha, Neb., Wednesday, June 17, 2020. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

EVENTS

  • Henrico County’s Juneteenth Celebration
    • Saturday, June 19, 1 to 10 p.m.
    • At Dorey Park
    • Henrico County’s inaugural Juneteenth event will honor the events of June 19, 1865, with food trucks, musical and theatrical performances and activities scheduled all day.
  • Celebrate Juneteenth at the Jamestown Settlement
    • Saturday, June 19 at 2 p.m.
    • Enjoy an afternoon of reflection, performance, music and interpretive dance to mark the end of slavery in the United States.
  • Juneteenth Powhatan 2021
    • Saturday, June 19, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
    • The lawn next to Habitat Resort on 1922 Urbine Road
    • This event will feature local authors, black-owned businesses, food vendors, vintage cars and more.
  • ‘Love and Legacy” Juneteenth Jubilee Celebration
    • Saturday, June 19 from 2 to 6 p.m.
    • Byrd Park, The Landing at Fountain Lake
    • Richmond leaders and organizations will hold this event to give Richmond residents a place to heal, be inspired and heal from the trauma stemming from the pandemic and the murder of George Floyd.
    • The event will include food truck vendors, children’s activities, music, dance and other entertainment.
  • Juneteenth: Freedom Day hosted by St. Peter’s and St. John’s Episcopal churches
    • Saturday, June 19 from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
    • St. Peter’s and St. John’s Episcopal Churches: 1719 N. 22nd Street, 2401 East Broad Street
    • This day long event will feature a march, a blessing, songs and prayer.
  • Juneteenth in the Park
    • Pocahontas State Park
    • Saturday, June 19, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
    • There will be educational activities, time for reflection and fun activities. People attending the park can visit food trucks, view entertainment acts, shop from vendors and participate in self-guided activities.
  •  Petersburg Juneteenth Celebration
    • Saturday, June 19 from 4 to 11 p.m.
    • The Petersburg Sports Complex on Ballpark Road
    • This celebration will feature music, fireworks, food trucks, COVID-19 vaccines and more.
  • Sounds of Freedom Celebration at Virginia Union University
    • Saturday, June 19 from 4:30 to 8 p.m.
    • VUU’s Hovey Field
    • Grammy Award-Winning Gospel Artist Hezekiah Walker will join the Hezekiah Walker Center for Gospel Music to host Virginia Union University’s Juneteenth Celebration.
  • Chesterfield County Public Library story walks
    • Saturday, June 19
    • Five StoryWalks are planned for Juneteenth weekend. People can come during park hours to take a walk and read a picture book.
    • All Different Now’ by Angela Johnson
      • Bensley Recreation Center, 2900 Drewrys Bluff Road, Richmond
      • Ettrick-Matoaca Library, 4501 River Road, Petersburg
    • ‘Juneteenth Jamboree’ by Carole Boston Weatherford
      • River City Sportsplex (back fields), 13030 Genito Road, Midlothian
    • ‘Juneteenth for Mazie’ by Floyd Cooper
      • Central Library, 7051 Lucy Corr Blvd, Chesterfield
      • Midlothian Mines Park, 13301 N Woolridge Road, Midlothian
  • Saturday Salutations: Juneteenth Celebration for All hosted by Ram Bhagat
    • Saturday, June 19 from 9 to 10:30 a.m.
    • Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden
    • Pre-registration required for this limited capacity event; register online here.
  • Keep Our Kids Free: Youth Talent Showcase and Block Party
    • Saturday, June 19, from noon to 3 p.m.
    • Six Points Innovation Center on 3001 Meadowbrdige Road
    • This event will have live music, vendors, raffles and feature youth performers and artists.
  • Juneteenth: Slavery and the struggle for Emancipation
    • Saturday, June 19, all-day
    • Colonial Williamsburg has a variety of programming exploring the history of slavery and emancipation in the U.S.
    • Juneteenth opening ceremony
      • This will begin at 10 a.m. at Market Square. The ceremony can also be live-streamed online here.
    • Celebrate Juneteenth at Custis Square
      • This is a guided tour of the Custis Square archeological site that will reflect on the presence and contributions of enslaved people. This event is open to the public
      • Tours are at 10:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. at Custis Square.
    • Remembrance: Honoring the Voices
      • This event will discuss the stories of African Americans through the tradition of oral history in a way to help community members learn, grow and heal.
      • The lecture is at 1 p.m. at Market Square and will also be streamed online here.
    • Honors & Reflection
      • The debut of a multimedia installation about the ongoing excavation of the historic First Baptist Church’s first permanent location of South Nassau Street.
      • This will begin at 9 p.m. at the First Baptist archeological site. It will stay on display nightly from 8:30 to 10:30 p.m. through July 4.
    • You can find a full list of events online here.
  • Elgeba Folklore Society presents Juneteenth: A Freedom Celebration
    • Sunday, June 27, from 1 to 6 p.m.
    • African Burial Ground, Broad & 15th Streets, Richmond, Virginia
    • The Elgeba Folklore Society is celebrating its 25th anniversary event. The anniversary event will feature a variety of performances and speakers at Richmond’s African Burial Ground.
  • RISE for Youth and Community 50/50 presents Keep Our Kids Free: Youth Talent Showcase and Block Party
    • Saturday, June 19, from noon to 3 p.m.
    • Six Points Innovation Center, 3001 Meadowbridge Road, Richmond, Va. 23222
    • The celebration will recognize Juneteenth 2021, celebrate 156 years of emancipation and showcase what Virginia’s young people are capable of when given the resources and opportunities to thrive.
    • The celebration will feature youth performers and artists, live music, vendors, raffles and more
  • Home Care Workers in SEIU Virginia 512 present a Juneteenth Homecoming Rally
    • Saturday, June 19, from 11:45 a.m. to 2 p.m.
    • Bon Secours Washington Training Center, 2401 W. Leigh Street, Richmond, Va. 23220
    • Register for the event by CLICKING HERE.
    • Home care workers in SEIU Virginia 512 are launching a statewide push to win collective bargaining rights for home care workers.
    • The event will feature speeches from home care workers, movement allies, elected leaders, HBCU majorette performances, live music and a dance party.

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