Though the Civil War officially ended on April 9, 1865 with Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee's surrender to Union Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, freedom for all enslaved persons across the south was not yet complete.
As one of the most remote states in the Confederacy, Texas was the last holdout where African-Americans were still being held as slaves.
This ended on June 19, 1865, when federal troops, led by Union Army Gen. Gordon Granger, arrived in Galveston and proclaimed freedom for all enslaved persons in Texas. It was also more than two years since President Abraham Lincoln had signed the Emancipation Proclamation on Sept. 22, 1862.
Known as "Juneteenth," and celebrated annually on June 19 in various parts of the United States since 1865, it was declared a national holiday on June 17, 2021.
Multiple celebrations will mark the holiday across our area.
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Juneteenth: Unity X Black Excellence Festival 2022
Presented by Juneteenth of Palm Beach County, this second annual celebration will take place from 3 to 10 p.m. Sunday at the Riviera Beach Marina Village Event Center and feature food and music as well as games and activities for all ages. The free event, which last year drew more than 2,300 attendees and dozens of local vendors, also is an opportunity to raise money for community programs including Culture Clinic, Culture Club and Mindful me. For information on the programs visit www.juneteenthpbc.org.
190 East 13th St., Riviera Beach
Norton Museum of Art: Juneteenh Family Celebration
The downtown museum will celebrate Juneteenth with multiple events from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday. There will be performances by Faith's Place Center for Arts & Education dancers, marching band and drumline, Miami-based DJ ReRe, storytelling and music by Soda Pop. "This intergenerational event celebrates freedom and spotlights the African American experience with live musical performances, dance, gallery talks on art by African American artists, storytelling, and art-making activities," the Norton says on its website. For more information go to www.norton.org/events
1450 S. Dixie Highway, West Palm Beach
YWCA of Palm Beach County: Family cookout
Celebrate the holiday with a cookout from noon to 4 p.m. Friday in Okeeheelee Park at the Alligator Pavilion. There will be soul food, Black art, traditional African-American games as well as a DJ. Free. Please RSVP for this event on eventbrite.com.
7715 Forest Hill Blvd., West Palm Beach
Boynton Beach Juneteenth Festival
Gather at Sara Sims Park in Boynton Beach for this free celebration from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. The event will feature a performance by MAP DANCE THEATRE, the Live In The Rhythm Drummers, motivational speaker Chris Freeman, youth praise director Myles Blackmon, a comedy routine and more. There will also be activities for children as well as civic and non-profit booths. Information: boynton-beach.org/juneteenth
209 NW Ninth Ave., Boynton Beach
NFBPA South Florida Juneteenth Paint and Reflect
Presented by the National Forum for Black Public Administrators & National Black MBA Association, this event will be held from noon to 3 p.m Monday at Intracoastal Park, pavilion 1, in Boynton Beach. Featuring music, games and prizes, as well as food trucks and drinks for purchase, the event's theme will be Recall, Reflect, Reclaim. The painting activity will feature artist Constance Ivana. Particpiants will get a 16-by-20-inch canvas with an outline of the picture, easel, paint brushes, paint and two hours of instruction. General admission is free. Tickets to take part in the painting are $30. Further information is available via eventbrite.com.
2240 N. Federal Highway, Boynton Beach
Arts Garage Juneteenth activities
This Delray Beach hotspot for arts, theater, music and more will feature two events to commemorate the holiday. Presented by the Delray Beach CRA in collaboration with Spady Cultural Heritage Museum and Arts Garage, author Simone Browne will discuss her book "Dark Matters: On the Surveillance of Blackness" at 7 p.m. tonight. The discussion is free. Then at 8 p.m. Saturday, Julius Sanna & The Positively Africa Experience will perform. Sanna, a Tanzanian-born, Kenya-raised, American-influenced musician and minister, will bring positive songs and tales of African culture fused with the joyful sounds of African rhythms, jazz, funk and pop. Tickets are $30. Information: artsgarage.org
94 NE Second Ave., Delray Beach
Juneteenth Celebration and Blackmer's Market
This free event from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Pompey Park in Delray Beach will help support locally-owned Black businesses. There will be speakers, performers, a PEACE walk and more. In addition, food and clothing will be available for purchase. In addition, information regarding community organizations and services will be available. More information via eventbrite.com.
1101 NW Second St., Delray Beach
Crafted on the Ave. Market — Juneteenth Edition
Held from 2 to 6 p.m. at the Libby Wesley Amphitheatre in Delray Beach, this event celebrating Juneteenth will feature local and regional creators of handmade products, confections, art, crafts and more in an open-air market. For more information check downtowndelraybeach.com/events.
2 SW Fifth Ave., Delray Beach
Wellington's “Redteenth” Cultural Festival
The Village of Wellington, The Sickle Cell Foundation of Palm Beach County, and Treasure Coast Inc. came together to put on the “Redteenth” Cultural Festival at the Wellington Town Center on Sunday, June 19th from 4 to 8 p.m.
It's a free event that will feature a drumline, fashion show, spoken word, food trucks, vendors, musical performances, cultural entertainment, and more. Vendros will also be on hand to provide information about sickle cell, diabetes and other health issues.
To attend this event, guests are asked to sign up via the Sickle Cell Foundation’s Page.
Eddie Ritz is a journalist at The Palm Beach Post, part of the USA TODAY Florida Network. He has lived in the West Palm Beach area for more than 30 years and, from mild to wild, will cover noteworthy community happenings. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Help support our journalism. Subscribe today.
This article originally appeared on Palm Beach Post: Juneteenth celebrations around Palm Beach County