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Women's Lifestyle Magazine

Juneteenth Celebrations in Grand Rapids

Jun 17, 2020 02:30AM ● By Women's LifeStyle

Updated: 06/17/2020 - 5:55pm

June 19, 2020 marks the 155 anniversary of Juneteenth and according to is “the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States”.

The word "Juneteenth" is a combination of the month and the date the holiday is observed. It represents June 19, 1865, when Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas to take control of the state, and enforce the freedom of the enslaved people. 

Although Juneteenth is recognized as a state holiday or day of observance in 47 states and the District of Columbia, it's not yet a federal holiday.

Today, June 17, Governor Whitmer issued a proclamation the June 19 as Juneteenth Celebration Day in Michigan. 

Juneteenth celebrations are taking place across our community this weekend. We have put together a list of virtual and real-life events right here in West Michigan that invite you reflect on this pivotal day in our nation's past while celebrating African-American history and culture. 

Friday, June 19th
Power to the People 616: A Virtual Juneteenth Celebration
"Power to the people." is a virtual Juneteenth livestream event celebration to effectively mobilize our beloved Black communities in America while unapologetically celebrating Juneteenth, local Black history, culture and traditions, local Black unsung heroes and Black joy above all.

Facebook event link:


Time: 10 A.M. to 10 P.M.

Friday, June 19th
Freedom Festival and Dickinson Park Dundunba
Bring your notebook and pen. This celebration will educate, inspire, energize and revolutionize your (Power of Silence) and fellowship with your community practicing all social distancing measures.

Celebrate educational fun in the sun. Walk, jog or ride your bike. Take Rapid Transit #3 (Madison) or #4 (Eastern), Enjoy refreshments, wear your mask and hand sanitizer if you have it. Sponsored by West Michigan Jewels of Africa, YOU and the City of Grand Rapids.
Contact: / 616-633-8148
Location: Dickinson Buffer Park, 1635 Willard St. SE, Grand Rapids
Time: 1:00 P.M. to 7:00 P.M.

Friday, June 19th
Juneteenth Community Drive-By Parade
IT'S TIME FOR A CELEBRATION! June 19th aka "Juneteenth" is National Black Independence Day. This marks the time when slavery finally ended in America and plantations were finally closed. It is a day of celebration, education, and education. While this holiday honors the ending of a slavery-era it also marks the beginning of the long journey for Blacks in America striving for excellence, battling inequity and contributing to the world. So we believe, like so many other exciting holidays, it's time we start a PARADE --not downtown--but through the Southside Neighborhoods that we love!

JOIN US! We will be decorating our cars and blasting Beyonce' and 'getting in formation' to celebrate the richness of the Black community and raise awareness of a monumental holiday for US!

What To Bring:

Poster Board

Temporary Car Paint


Zip Ties

Car Flags




2:30 - Car Decorations/Preparations

3:00 - Line Up/Begin

3:45 - End Parade at MLK Park

For questions, contact [email protected]

Facebook event link:


Time: 2:30 P.M. to 3:45 P.M.

Friday, June 19th
Unapologetically Black Cultural Festival

Black music.

Black food.

Black art.

Black businesses.

Black politics.

Black wellness.

Join us on Friday, June 19th for an unapologetically black celebration of the rich culture of the Black community on the (often ignored or overlooked) historical day that marks our freedom and humanity in this country.


For opportunities for you, your family, organization, or business to get involved contact [email protected]

Facebook event link:

Location: Martin Luther King Park, 900 Fuller Ave SE, Grand Rapids

Time: 4 P.M. to 7 P.M.

Saturday, June 20th
Juneteenth Celebration
In light of everything, we will be celebrating Juneteenth like never done before! This is a time to embrace our culture. Juneteenth is the day word got back that the civil war had been won and slaves would now be free! In honor of that, there will be a celebration with games, food, & spoken word. Please come out to join local activists in your community in sharing the knowledge and history of our people. We’ve worked hard to create a family fun event, inviting everyone to come to share poetry, knowledge, music, and much more.

Facebook event link:

Location: Garfield Park Community Gym 2111 Madison Ave SE Grand Rapids, Michigan 49507

Time: 3 P.M. to 7 P.M.

For additional Grand Rapids event Juneteenth information visit: