Governor Northam was joined by Virginia Beach native Pharrell Williams Tuesday to announce that he will be proposing legislation making Juneteenth a state holiday.
Virginia has acknowledged Juneteenth (June 19) with a written proclamation. Northam stated that it is time we elevate the holiday so it is celebrated by everyone.
Juneteenth is the oldest known commemoration of the end of slavery in the United States. It marks the day in 1865 that enslaved people in Galveston, Texas, the last of the former Confederate states to abolish slavery, finally heard that the Civil War had ended, and learned that the Emancipation Proclamation had made them free nearly two years earlier.
In Hampton Roads, many groups and organizations are celebrating with festivities and community walks!
Here is a list of Juneteenth events, virtual and in-person, that you can find in Hampton Roads:
Old Dominion University (online)
The ODU office of Community Engagement plans to host a live virtual tour of the 400th Commemoration art exhibit at the Goode Theatre. The online tour will be guided by Ted Ellis, starting at 4 p.m. in observance of Juneteenth and is free for anyone to join! However, you must sign up for the event at this link.
Virginia Humanites (online)
The Virginia African American Cultural Resources Task Force plans to host a Juneteenth online conversation on the state of Black historic preservation in Virginia. The online event will take place on Friday from 12 p.m. - 1 p.m. The event is free but you must register in advance at this link.
NAACP Hampton has organized an event with the Urban League of Hampton Roads, Hampton University, Sentara, and the Virginia Department of Health called “Your Health Is Your Wealth” which will offer free coronavirus drive-thru testing on Friday, June 19 from 9 a.m. - 12 p.m. The even will take place at the Emancipation Oak parking lot located on Hampton University's campus. Free masks, gloves and hand sanitizer will be distributed.
Black Lives Matter 757 is having their Juneteenth celebration on Friday from 3 p.m. - 7 p.m. at Oozelfinch Beers & Blending in Fort Monroe. Organizers on Facebook say that the event will be family friendly and ask participants to bring their lawn chairs since this is an outside event!
Peninsula Community organizers say they're hosting a Juneteenth Walk for Justice on Saturday, June 20. The walk begins at the Newport News Police Department headquarters at 9710 Jefferson Avenue at 10 a.m. and will end at the Newmarket Shopping Plaza at 124 Newmarket Square. Lunch will be free and the organizer's flyer says to bring a mask, dress comfortably and bring good vibes!
Pure Lagos says they're hosting a free event with Afropolitan vendors, cuisine, music and more to highlight the creativity in our community and contribution to small businesses as well as the local economy. That event is on June 19-20 from 1 p.m. - 4 p.m. at 208 E Main Street.
The Elizabeth City Police Department says a Unity March is scheduled to take place downtown in celebration of Juneteenth. The local celebratory march will begin at Mariners’ Wharf Park in downtown around 5 p.m. and will end at the Pasquotank County Courthouse on Main Street. Guest speakers will be Attorney Chantel Cherry-Lassiter from the Southern Coalition for Social Justice and community activist Rashod Everett. The march will be escorted by local law enforcement.
Don't see your event listed? Let as know what you have planned by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
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