Sorry, no festivals here.
Before you start screaming “‘Murica” this Fourth of July, consider celebrating another significant point in our country’s history: the abolition of slavery. In 1863, President Lincoln drafted the Emancipation Proclamation and allowed black soldiers to serve in the Union Army. Then, on June 19th, 1865, U.S. Major General Gordon Granger read aloud General Order Number 3 in Galveston, Texas. And now, as a result, the United States observes June 19th as a national holiday. Juneteenth is every bit American as any shindig you’ve attended in honor of the red, white and blue. From Brooklyn, New York, to San Francisco, California, numerous cities celebrate this momentous occasion with a host of activities including live music performances, lots of food, arts and crafts and other entertainment options that are unique to each festival. Beyond cities, cultural museums and local organizations have taken it upon themselves to offer Juneteenth-related festivities, successfully spreading awareness on African American culture and history.