Celebrating Juneteenth With Kids

Juneteenth — aka Freedom Day — falls on June 19 and celebrates the abolition of slavery in America. Here are some ways you can celebrate Juneteenth with kids.

The word

On June 19, 1865, Major General Gordon Granger landed in Galveston, Texas, with the news that the Union had won the Civil War and that all enslaved people were now free, Juneteenth.com reports.

While America still has a long way to go in creating equality for black people, the whole world celebrates this historical moment each year on June 19, which is now known as Juneteenth, or Freedom Day.

Metro Detroit and Ann Arbor are full of events geared toward those looking for ways to celebrate Black culture, commemorate the day and teach kids a bit about our nation’s history.

Here are a few local options to celebrate Juneteenth with kids.

Conversations for the Culture

June 15-19, 2020

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  • Location: Virtual, Facebook Live
  • Cost: Free
  • Times: Vary by event

The city of Detroit celebrates Juneteenth with a week full of Facebook Live events promoting Black culture, education and more. Tune in for conversations that offer healing, empowerment and growth. These events culminate in the Juneteenth Freedom Rally at Spirit Plaza at 10 a.m. on Friday, June 19.

Cosplayers for Juneteenth

June 19, 2020

  • Location: Mt. Elliott Park on Mt. Elliott St. in Detroit
  • Cost: Free
  • Time: 2-4 p.m.

Cosplayers come together to celebrate Juneteenth with music, games and discussions on Black comic and anime characters. Come in costume and respect social distancing guidelines.

Juneteenth Black Author Virtual Book Fair

June 19-21, 2020

  • Location: Virtual, YouTube and Facebook Live
  • Cost: Free/admission, $18/remembrance T-shirt
  • Times: 6-9 p.m. Friday, noon-3:30 p.m. Saturday, 2-5 p.m. Sunday

Detroit Book City hosts a three-day virtual book fair that features Black authors from Detroit and beyond. Speakers include Phoenix Q. Brown, Dr. Regina Jennings, Craig Wilson and Kim Batchelor Davis.

Juneteenth Black Empowerment Expo

June 20, 2020

  • Location: 21300 Hilltop St., Southfield
  • Cost: Free
  • Time: 3-7 p.m.

This expo offers vendors, live entertainment and special guest panels to empower people of color and celebrate the day.

Juneteenth BLM March

June 20, 2020

  • Location: Downtown Detroit
  • Cost: Free
  • Time: 11 a.m.

This peaceful protest and rally by three Detroit activists who hope to raise awareness about the factors that oppress people of color and the importance of education at all levels.

Juneteenth Celebration Kickback

June 19, 2020

  • Location: Belle Isle Beach, Detroit
  • Cost: Free, $11/recreation passport
  • Time: 3p.m.

Bring a grill, some music and your friends for a barbecue and celebration of Juneteenth and all it represents.

Juneteenth Detroit Festival

June 19, 2020

  • Location: Maheras Gentry Park on Connor Street in Detroit
  • Cost: Fees may apply, registration required
  • Time: 11 a.m.-8 p.m.

This annual event is celebrating its 10th year in 2020 with live performances, games, vendors and a city-wide scavenger hunt.

Juneteenth Freedom Day Celebration

June 19, 2020

  • Location: Russel Industrial Center, 1600 Clay St., Detroit
  • Cost: Donations
  • Time: 2-8 p.m.

Find a variety of art classes including dance, vocal, acting, makeup and filmmaking classes. Donations go to support the Black Lives Matter Movement and the NAACP.

Juneteenth Jubilee Live

June 17-19, 2020

  • Location: Virtual, Facebook and Instagram
  • Cost: Free
  • Time: All day

The Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History takes its Juneteenth celebrations online this year. Tune in for a multi-museum virtual celebration, performances by Charlie Parker and more.

Juneteenth: Vegan Soul BBQ Pop Up

June 19, 2020

  • Location: Brightmoor Artisans Collective, 22735 Fenkell St., Detroit
  • Cost: $15
  • Time: 5:30-8:30 p.m.

VDaLish: Vegan Cuisine and Desserts offers meals that include one main dish, two sides and cornbread. Choose from BBQ meatballs, jackfruit sliders or chickpea toona sandwiches. Curbside pick-up and cards only.

Juneteenth Walk for Racial Justice

June 20, 2020

  • Location: Wheeler Park, 200 Depot St., Ann Arbor
  • Cost: Free
  • Time: 9 a.m.-2 p.m.

Give 365 and the Ann Arbor Branch of the NAACP host this socially distanced one-mile walk.

Do you know of any other Juneteenth events happening in metro Detroit or Ann Arbor? Share them with us in the comments so we can add them to our list!

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