(Nation World News Spanish) — Juneth, a combination of words june (June) and nineteenth (nineteen), is the oldest holiday in the United States to commemorate the end of slavery. It’s Liberation Day.
And it will be the second time this year that June 19th will be celebrated as a federal holiday, marking the beginning of a week of celebrations commemorating the end of slavery in America and the ongoing fight for fairness and justice.
Although Juneteenth has been celebrated by many black communities in the US for many years, it did not become a federal holiday until June 2021.
“I’m sorry my grandson isn’t here, because this is a very, very, very important moment in our history. By making June 19 a federal holiday, all Americans can feel the power of this day and learn from our history.” We can, and celebrate, make progress, and tackle the distance we have come (and) the distance we have to go,” President Joe Biden established June 19 as Emancipation Day.
Currently, all 50 states and the city of Washington (District of Columbia) recognize June 19 as a holiday or observance, and at least 18 states have legislated as a paid state holiday.
These are the states where Juneteenth is observed as a permanent paid state holiday:
Illinois (If June 19th falls on a weekend, Illinois does not make the previous Friday or the following Monday a paid holiday.)
Dakota Del Suri
Juneteenth is the first federal holiday established since Martin Luther King Jr. Day in 1983 and the eleventh federal holiday recognized by the United States federal government.
For many, this Juneteenth represents a time to reconnect with loved ones and the activities they once enjoyed before Covid-19.
For example, on June 19, Nation World News will broadcast an opening program live from the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles at 8:00 p.m. (ET): Juneteenth: A Global Celebration for Freedom. Produced by Sean Gee of Live Nation Urban and Jesse Collins Entertainment, the event will celebrate June 16 and highlight the ongoing fight for equality in the black community.
During Nation World News’s pre-show coverage, Nation World News’s Don Lemon will honor black artists and advocates working to improve inequality at 7:00 p.m. (ET). Amidst the celebration, the event will also recognize the work that remains to be done in the fight against racial injustice.
“We knew it was important to shine a light on the meaning and importance of Juneteenth for our country and our audiences,” says Jonita Dew, Senior Vice President and Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer at Nation World News. “And not just as a historical event, but as a way of really involving and educating people on what still needs to happen for all of us to achieve freedom and justice.”
Here are some other Juneteenth celebrations across the country:
- Denver, Colorado will host the Juneteenth music festival, which attracts 50,000 people annually. The event will begin with a celebratory parade and will feature two days of live entertainment, parties and business from local vendors. The proceeds from the Juneteenth Music Festival will benefit the economic empowerment of youth and young adults.
- In Washington, artist and music mogul Pharrell Williams will host the “Something in the Water Festival” over the weekend of June 16. The 3-day festival will include performances by Farrell, SZA, Anderson Pak and more.
- In New York City, the Tribeca Film Festival presents its Juneteenth event to celebrate “Black Stories and Elevate the Voice of Black Storytellers.” Featured content will include podcasts, music, talks and movies. For those outside of New York City, the Tribeca Film Festival will also have an online offering.
- The Juneteenth Foundation will begin its list of programs with an inaugural Juneteenth Honor Awards ceremony that will highlight “black excellence, our history, and the achievements of African-American veterans.” The foundation will also host a celebrity golf tournament, a festival promoting black businesses, and a virtual career fair. With the support of partner agencies, the Foundation will also host a Father’s Day Juneteenth reception in honor of African-American fathers. The event will take place at the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington.
With reporting from Nation World News’s Ashley Vaughn and Ryan Bergeron.