Juneteenth is coming up this weekend. Here are 16 ways to commemorate the day.
Backstory: On June 19, 1865, Union soldiers told enslaved African Americans in Galveston, Texas, that they were free following the end of the Civil War. The day officially marks the end of slavery in the U.S.
11th Annual Charlotte Black Film Festival
Online | June 15-25, various times | $19-$49 | Details
Why you should go: The Charlotte Black Film Festival is one of the largest gatherings of multi-cultural content producers and creatives in the Southeast. This 11-day virtual festival will allow attendees to connect with filmmakers and creatives of color and experience premiere film, fashion and music.
Juneteenth Festival of the Carolinas
1215 Thomas Ave. (House of Africa) | June 17-20 | Free, donations appreciated | Details
Why you should go: Now in its 24th year, the Juneteenth Festival of the Carolinas celebrates the end of slavery by bringing the community together to reflect and remember the historical event. Festivities will include a youth day camp, a drum circle and performers from around the globe.
Blumenthal Performing Arts 1st Annual Juneteenth Jam
Victoria Yards & The Square at Spirit Square | June 18th-19th, 4:30pm & 7:30pm | Free | Details
Why you should go: Juneteenth Jam is a two-day, artist-filled celebration highlighting the history, joy and significance of Juneteenth through interactive dance sessions, art installations and live music.
JUNETEENTH: JUNE 19, 2021
2nd Annual Juneteenth Block Party
525 Johnson Rd. | 11am to 8pm | Free | Details
Why you should go: Riziki Zafira of Sesa University is hosting a family-friendly block party with live performances, DJs, a community circle, good from local vendors, raffles and giveaways. Family activities will happen from 11am to 4pm, and an after party for adults will be from 4-11pm.
Juneteenth Drum Circle With Drums 4 Life at The Gantt Center
551 South Tryon St. | 11-11:45am | Free | Details
Why you should go: Join the esteemed percussive group, Drums 4 Life for an interactive drum circle in the Gantt Center plaza.
Queen City Juneteenth Festival
2600 West Trade St. | Noon to 6pm | Free | Details
Why you should go: This family-friendly Juneteenth festival will have more than 40 Black-owned companies and vendors, food, and kids’ activities among other things.
Durag Fest 2021
Multiple locations | Noon to midnight | Pay what you please | Details
Why you should go: This year Durag Fest will start at Victoria Yards for the Deep Wave Day Party from noon to 6. There will be vendors and food trucks. Starting at 2pm, day party-goers can go by the NASCAR Hall of Fame Plaza to watch a live art installation titled “Durag Hall of Fame,” dance performances and a cypher. From 7-11pm the festivities will move to Camp North End for “DU After Dark” also called “Adult Swim.” There will be an outdoor street fashion show and live performers.
[Related Axios story: The unapologetically Black Durag Festival is back]
QC Juneteenth FEST
7601 The Plaza, | Noon to 8pm | Free | Details
Why you should go: This celebration hosted by the Black Business Owners Corporation (BBOC) and The Melanated Exchange Market will have live performances, a kids’ zone, community activities, guest speakers, a selfie experience, visual artists The event features DJ Mood the Kid.
Juneteenth African Dance Experience at The Gantt Center
551 South Tryon St. | 1-2:30pm | Free | Details
Why you should go: Elsie Mufuka, owner and founder of MufukaWorks Dance Company, welcomes families for a Juneteenth African dance workshop. Mufuka will take participants through the history of African dance, and lead a simple but expressive dance choreography. Be sure to wear comfortable clothes and shoes for the experience, with enough water for the family to stay hydrated.
Belmont Juneteenth Celebration
Downtown Belmont | 2pm | $25 | Details
Why you should go: Celebrate Juneteenth in the community of Belmont by participating in one of the three scheduled events. There’s the Virtual 2K Family & Friends Freedom Walk which is taking place now through June 30, the Belmont Juneteenth Celebration Parade on June 19 at 2pm and the Virtual Belmont Juneteenth Celebration Concert on June 19 at 7pm.
2nd Annual Juneteenth Family Fun Festival in Monroe
217 IB Shive Drive, Belk Tonawanda Park | 11am to 3pm | Free | Details
Why you should go: This in-person, family-friendly Juneteenth celebration will have music, food and fellowship at Belk Tonawanda Park in Monroe.
Davidson Juneteenth Celebration
212 Gamble St. | 11am to 2pm | Price | Details
Why you should go: Head to The Ada Jenkins Center in Davidson for music, food trucks, speakers and children’s activities.
Juneteenth Celebrity Celebration Featuring 2 CHAINZ
900 North Carolina Music Factory Blvd | 10pm to 2am (next day) | $25+ | Details
Why you should go: You read that correctly. 2 Chains is performing LIVE at The Music Factory.
Lyrical Healing Open Mic Juneteenth Celebration
229 South Brevard St. | 7-11:30pm | $20 | Details
Why you should go: Catch local artists and creatives take the stage at Studio 229 for a Juneteenth open mic night.
Wine Me Down Juneteenth Vineyard Tour
Various locations | 8:30am to 9:30pm | $99 per person | Details
Why you should go: Celebrate Juneteenth with a day trip to two, Black-owned NC vineyards.
Freedom: A Juneteenth Celebration
430 South Tryon St. | 9pm | $20-$55 | Details
Why you should go: Knight Theather invites you to come dressed in your finest evening attire or traditional African garb for a Juneteenth celebration through fashion.