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June 18-20

Juneteenth Atlanta Parade and Music Festival Centennial ​Olympic Park 1-10 p.m. Friday 10 a.m.-11 p.m. Saturday 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Sunday www.juneteenthatl.com

Popularity of African American Holiday is Growing Across U.S. BY MARGARET MILLER

Juneteenth is becoming more popular in America as an important African American holiday. For many years, it primarily was a Texas celebration. After all, it was in Galveston, Texas, that this holiday originated. U.S. President Abraham Lincoln had abolished slavery in the United States when he issued the Emancipation Proclamation, effective Jan. 1, 1863. But it wasn’t until June 19, 1865, that word circulated in Texas that slavery had been abolished. Upon hearing this news, the former slaves celebrated with church services, picnics, social gettogethers, rodeos, etc. This was the beginning of various traditions of Juneteenth (a merger of the words June and nineteen). In 1980, Texas proclaimed Juneteenth as a state holiday. People in other parts of the country also observe this historic Independence Day for African Americans. Milwaukee,

Minnesota, has one of the longest established celebrations of Juneteenth, beginning in 1971. On June 19, 2020, the city flew the Juneteenth flag over a city building for the first time. This was only one of many activities celebrating this freedom day. In 2011, Georgia became the 37th state to recognize Juneteenth at its state Capitol with the passage of S.R. 164. The Juneteenth Atlanta Parade and Music Festival has been a popular event for several years. The 2021 celebration is scheduled for Centennial Olympic Park, June 18-20. Some of the planned activities include a Black history parade, march and rally, family reunions, a United Nations Human Rights Forum, vendors and an artist market. Since the 2021 festival coincides with Father’s Day, there will be special activities honoring fathers during this historic and fun weekend. www.juneteenthatl.com.

Margaret Miller is a native of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and moved to Woodstock 14 years ago. Her writing hobby led her to become a columnist for community and daily newspapers.



Photo courtesy of Juneteenth website.

June 19

Cobb Democrats Celebration Booth 11 a.m.-7 p.m. in Marietta Square 99 S. Park Square NE Concert on the Green: A Juneteenth Celebration at Logan Farm Park, Acworth The event opens at 5 p.m with live music at 7-9 p.m. Book signing: “Kevin Turns Fear Into Feat” by Kevin Edwards 11 a.m.-7 p.m. in Marietta Square 99 S. Park Square NE Meet the author: pre-register to attend at www.eventbrite.com.