FORT WAYNE—The Weisser Park Youth Center/SBA Academy is scheduled to host a three-day Community Juneteenth Celebration, June 20 through June 22 at Weisser Park, 802 Eckart St.
The celebration is scheduled to kick off at 6 p.m., June 20, with a Night of Art, featuring the Nellems, Patterson, Sanders & Steele jazz quartet, along with a number of young poets and writers.
The Juneteenth festivities are set to continue from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., June 21 with an open house for the Weisser Park Youth Center.
This year’s Juneteenth Celebration is set to close with a full day of activities in the form of the Juneteenth Festival, 2 p.m. to 8 p.m., with youth activities, prizes, basketball and food, closing with a special concert featuring the renowned Latrece Moment with Fort Wayne’s “Queen of Soul,” Latrece Goree.
The Weisser Park Juneteenth Celebration is free, family-friendly and open to the public.
Juneteenth is a traditional African American holiday commemorating the date black people in Texas found out about the abolition of slavery as outlined in the Emancipation Proclamation. Although President Abraham Lincoln issued the proclamation on Sept. 22, 1862, with an effective date of Jan. 1, 1863, slaves in Texas—which was part of the seceding Confederate States of America—were not impacted by the decision until Union troops during the Civil War arrived in Galveston, Texas in June 1865. On June 19 of that year, Union General Gordon Granger read a general order announcing the contents and intent of the proclamation. The date went down in history as “Juneteenth.” Today, the holiday is celebrated in most states across the country.
For more information, call (260) 427-6780.
This article originally appeared in the June 12, 2013 print edition.