Your guide to Metro Detroit’s Juneteenth activities

The racial unrest of the Summer of 2020 immediately following the police killing of 46-year-old George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25 prompted a renewed interest in the celebration of Juneteenth. 

The holiday is the oldest national celebration commemorating the ending of slavery in the United States. 

It was on June 19, 1865, that enslaved people in Galveston, Texas were told in person that slavery was over. General Gordon Granger of the Union Army made the announcement and freed the last enslaved people more than two-and-a-half years after the end of the war. 

Celebrations of the historic anniversary have existed in the country ever since. 

In Detroit, Juneteenth has long been a celebrated event. Home of the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, one of the Midwest’s most preeminent Black history institutions, our city has celebrated Juneteeth with singing, dancing, and performances. 

Juneteenth Jubilee Freedom Weekend
June 17-19
The Wright Museum 
315 E. Warren Ave., Detroit

This year, The Wright will be one of many celebrations of education, economic independence, and engagement. Some events will take place online, but this year some in-person elements will return as well. 

Juneteenth Jubilee Stroll on the Historic Avenue of Fashion 
Saturday, June 19. 12 p.m to 6 p.m. 

Enjoy a unique shopping experience supporting Detroit’s Black business on the Historic Avenue of Fashion. Each participating business will be offering discounts to customers. The stroll will also include a live podcast, health and wellness resources, a raffle and more. 

Tickets for the event are $10 and include a map of participating businesses and swag bags. 

Detroit Black Wall Street Juneteenth Father’s Day Celebration
Saturday, June 19. 5:45 p.m. to 10 p.m. 
21380 Coolidge Hwy., Oak Park

This event will feature a DJ performance, vendors, and food and drink specials. The event will also be indoor/outdoor for a 420-friendly event. 

The African American Leadership Institute Presents: Juneteenth Celebration 2021
Saturday, June 19. 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. 

The African American Leadership Awards ceremony and Juneteenth Celebration will take place at the new outdoor venue erected at the Music Hall. This year the 2021 Leadership & Legacy Lifetime Achievement Honoree is Detroit native and Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison. Tickets range from $25 to $150. 

East Dearborn Juneteenth Mobility Stroll
June 19,. 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. 
City Hall Park, 13615 Michigan Ave., Dearborn

Dearborn residents are gathering to safely walk, bike, roll or stroll to re-enact the route of emancipation on Michigan Avenue. The program will kick off with speakers, music, and a stretching session. The Roll & Stroll will kick off at 10. 

Several stops are planned along the route. The Stroll and Roll will also have an array of fun activities geared toward all ages including a Kid’s Zone as part of the attractions.

Juneteenth Family Reunion 
June 19., 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. 
Catalpa Oaks, 27705 Greenfield Rd. Southfield

Southfielders will celebrate their signature Juneteenth event with a family reunion at a local park. 

From sunup to sundown, the all-ages event will be a full day of games, activities, live entertainment, music, and vendors. Kids and seniors eat free! 

Juneteenth POP-UP Shop
June 19, 3:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. 
David H. Shepherd Park
24198 Church St., Oak Park, MI 48237

Hosted by Sar Cosmetics, this lively event will feature festivities like raffles, food, and entertainment. All vendors are automatically entered into the raffle. one winning a gift card to an upscale spa and other goodies. 

Hamtramck’s Juneteenth Clean Up
June 19, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. 
Sarah Garrett Park 
11369 Dequindre St., Hamtramck 

Residents will clean up Sarah Garrett Park and the surrounding area. In line with the recent discussion about personal safety and street harassment, we're working to secure a person to do a short demonstration/workshop about situational awareness and self-defense to kick off the cleanup.

Sarah Garrett Park is an excellent location for the celebration as Sarah Sims Garrett once joined with over 100 plaintiffs in 1968 to sue the city of Hamtramck and won in 1971. The Sarah Garrett Homes housing project was named in her honor.


Read more articles by Biba Adams.

Biba Adams is Model D's Editor at Large. Biba Adams is a longtime journalist whose work is fueled by her passion for people and her native Detroit. Her work has appeared in VIBE Ebony Magazine, and more. Find her on all social channels @BibatheDiva.
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