ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Celebrated on June 19, Juneteenth commemorates the emancipation of enslaved African Americans in Galveston, Texas who were finally notified of their freedom in 1865.
The day was officially recognized as a holiday through a unanimous vote by the Ann Arbor City Council on May 18, 2021, and by a Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners resolution on June 2, 2021.
As of Wednesday, Juneteenth is also on its way to being recognized as a federal holiday in the United States after a Wednesday vote from Congress. The bill is headed to President Joe Biden’s desk.
Learn more about the history of Juneteenth here.
Here’s what is happening around Ann Arbor:
JUNETEENTH FLAG RAISING CEREMONY
At 9 a.m. on Friday, Washtenaw County officials, county commissioners and guests will raise a flag to commemorate Juneteenth, officials said.
The program will include a socially distanced outdoor ceremony, local youth, community members and faith leaders. Masks are required.
The public event will be followed by a reception in the lobby of the Washtenaw County Administration building. Learn more here.
Attend the flag raising at 220 N. Main St.
JUNETEENTH WALK AND CELEBRATION
From 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday, community members will march the one-mile distance between Fuller Park and Wheeler Park. Participants will move along Riverside Park, across the Broadway Bridge, over Summit Street and into Wheeler Park.
At the end of the march there will be refreshments, conversation and information, officials said.
Volunteers are needed to help GIVE365 with the event. Those interested can email email@example.com.
Fuller Park is at 1519 Fuller Rd.
June 19 (rain or shine) 10a.m.-noon. Participate in an in-person one mile community march from Fuller Park to Wheeler Park. Then a 1 p.m., virtual program by @AnnArborNAACP & other collaborators. https://t.co/KWURbbMlTH for details! @A2GOV pic.twitter.com/imldrVBlGm— Ann Arbor Parks Rec (@A2Parks) June 9, 2021
YPSI BLM STREET MURAL UNVEILING JUNETEENTH CELEBRATION
Join the Ypsilanti community in unveiling two new Black Lives Matter murals painted by 80 volunteers in early June. After the unveiling, the celebration will have dance lessons, live music, a headlining performance by John E. Lawerance and local vendors.
The celebration will start at 11 a.m. on Saturday in the parking lot of Puffer Reds, adjacent to one of the new murals on South Washington Street. Learn more here.
Puffer Reds is at 113 W. Michigan Avenue, Ypsilanti.
CULTIVATE COFFEE & TAPHOUSE
Starting at 5 p.m. on Saturday, the Ypsilanti taphouse and eatery will host KG’s African American Grill. The Garden City-based grill will offer jerk chicken with sides or Veggie Thiou for $12.
DJ Emeks will provide Afro-Caribbean, Reggae, AfroBeats, Hip-hop, Old School and Gospel music during the event. Learn more here.
Cultivate is at 307 N. River St., Ypsilanti.