Juneteenth celebrations are set throughout St. Louis

ST. LOUIS – Although Juneteenth has yet to become widely popular and a federally observed holiday, it is an official state holiday in Missouri, and celebrations here are growing.

Also known as Juneteenth Independence Day or Freedom Day, it is the oldest known commemoration of the announcement on June 19, 1865, of the abolishment of slavery in Texas. There, Confederates had ignored President Abraham Lincoln’s 1862 Emancipation Proclamation ending slavery as of Jan. 1, 1863. Union soldiers landed in Galveston, Texas, in 1865, forcing slave owners there to free their slaves.

Following is a list of citywide celebrations:

Fountain Park: 6:30 p.m. Friday, June 14, a gospel explosion at Centennial Christian Church, 4950 Fountain Avenue; main event, 1-4 p.m. Saturday, June 15, at Fountain Park; 10:30 a.m. Sunday, June 16, church worship in the park. Call (314) 324-8440.

Sabayet Inc.: 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday, June 15, at 4000 Maffitt Avenue at Sarah Street. Call (314) 533-2599.

Delmar Loop: 12-4 p.m. Saturday, June 15, The Delmar Loop, on a lot at Delmar Boulevard and Hamilton Avenue.

Downtown: 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, June 15, Community Bike Ride and events, Soldiers Memorial Military Museum, 1315 Chestnut Street. Call (314) 455-6329.

Love Bank Park: 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday, June 16, 2851 Cherokee Street.

Artist Art: 7:30-9:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 19, All Black Ev’rthang Improve Nite Juneteenth Edition, 2643 Cherokee Street.

RNS: 7-9 p.m. Wednesday, June 19, Celebration of Culture, Galeria Obscura, 2640 Cherokee Street.

Bill Beene Bill Beene was born and raised in north St. Louis. He has been a journalist for 12 years. He enjoys cooking and roller skating. He lives in the historic Ville neighborhood.

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