Columbus Juneteenth celebration is almost underway

COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI)- Juneteenth is a holiday that’s oftentimes overlooked, but all that is changing. The U.S. Senate unanimously voted to make Juneteenth a federal holiday, and approval from the House of Representatives would make it one step closer to law.

On June 19, 1865 union troops arrived in Galveston Bay, Texas to free more than 250,000 enslaved African Americans. The Civil War had been over for two months, but it took weeks for word to reach Texas.

“America is recognizing that Juneteenth is a worthy holiday to be celebrated, but not just celebrated but also use it as a teachable moment so our children’s children why we celebrate this important day,” said State Representative House District 41 Kabir Karriem.

Karriem said the pandemic didn’t allow them to celebrate last year.

“Covid put a stop on everything, but it feels wonderful to get back out and still with precautions, but get out, celebrate and be able to socialize again like days of old and Juneteenth is just one of those celebrations that you look forward to each and every year,” said Karriem.

Lowndes County board of supervisors member Leroy Brooks said there is another important day for the black community.

“We always celebrated the 8th of May because in Mississippi it was the 8th of May festival but you know we started 25 years ago we skipped a year because of Covid last year, but you know we thought it was just a good activity to hold in the community,” said Brooks.

Sims Scott Park 24th annual Juneteenth celebration is expected to bring several vendors and community members out to enjoy.

“People come out, set up and sell their foods, clothing and it’s just like a big neighborhood party that we all enjoy. It’s a lot of work but we enjoy it,” said Brooks.

Movements like Black Lives Matter have shed light on black history and celebrations.

“It’s just another part of the black experience the black perspective that we’re seeing unfold in this country. More people are learning about these days and what they mean in terms of the African American experience,” said Brooks.

The Columbus Juneteenth celebration will begin Friday at 8.p.m and continue on Saturday at 10 a.m. at Sims Scott Park.

Categories: Local News

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