RACINE, WI — A series of events honoring Juneteenth are scheduled to take place in Racine in the week leading up to the official day of the holiday, Sunday.
Juneteenth, named a federal holiday in 2021, takes place on June 19 each year and recognizes the end of slavery. The holiday marks the day in 1865 that federal soldiers took control of Gavelston, Texas, to ensure that enslaved people were free after the Civil War, according to History.com. Many consider it the longest-running holiday of its kind in the nation.
In Racine, planned events range from a program to learn about your rights, an NAACP Freedom Walk, athletics camps, movies, programs on home ownership and more, according to an announcement from the city.
Racine’s Juneteenth Week of Celebration began on Saturday and will last until Saturday. Festivities will largely take place at the Dr. John Bryant Community Center, located at 601 Caron Butler Drive in Racine. Some other activities may happen at other locations.
The city said the events are free, family-friendly and open to the public. Musical performances, children’s activities, food and more can be found throughout the events.
The Racine Police Department said it is excited to celebrate the holiday with its community. Officers from Racine and Mount Pleasant plus members of the Racine County Sheriff’s Office will be present to enjoy the festivities, said Racine police in a news release.
The events will culminate on Saturday with the NAACP Freedom Walk tentatively scheduled for 8 am The day will also bring the official Juneteenth Celebration, with basketball games, live music, vendors, an auto show and more.