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In Festival Guide

Juneteenth Day celebrates African-American culture and freedom.

Juneteenth Day: June 19

Even though President Lincoln freed the slaves in the Emancipation Proclamation of Jan. 1, 1863, the good news didn't reach the folks in Galveston, Texas, until June 19, 1865 when Major General Gordon Granger and his troops arrived there, announcing the end of the Civil War.

Since then, June 19 has been known as "Juneteenth Day" and is the oldest celebration of the end of slavery in the United States. The Civil Rights era saw a resurgence of observation of the day, and it's been a staple of Milwaukee festivals since the 1970s, when an employee of the Northcott Neighborhood House was inspired by the celebrations held in southern states.

Four decades later, everyone agrees that the best Juneteenth party can be found right here in Milwaukee. This year's celebration will feature kids' games, exhibits, soul food, music, a parade and more.

When: Friday, June 19.

Where: King Drive, between Burleigh and Center Streets.

Hours: 9 a.m.-6 p.m.

Admission: Free.

Highlights: Catch the parade that kicks off the event. Live entertainment features local African dance groups, a variety of musical groups, and the Miss Juneteenth Day Pageant. Soul food and other festival favorites are available all day long.

For more information: (414) 372-3770.


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