Juneteenth

Since 2021 we've been celebrating Juneteenth in the Finger Lakes and this year was filled with incredible moments. From music performances and poetry to art and dance the Juneteenth celebration in Elmira, New York was a celebration of culture. The annual event is organized by the Elmira Economic Opportunity Program and was held on Saturday, June 15, 2024, at Ernie Davis Park. 

Juneteenth

Juneteenth

Although it's been celebrated for years in African American communities, Juneteenth is a new federal holiday celebrated on June 19. Commemorating the end of slavery in America, which wasn't enforceable in all states until June 19, 1865. Even though the Emancipation Proclamation was thought to have freed enslaved African Americans in 1863. 

Juneteenth

Juneteenth

Traditional food and drink play a major role in Juneteenth celebrations. Red food and drinks like red velvet cake and watermelon symbolize the sacrifice made by African American ancestors. 

Juneteenth

The Juneteenth flag was created in 1997 by the founder of the National Juneteenth Celebration Foundation (NJCF), activist Ben Haith. He deliberately chose the colors red, white, and blue for the flag as a reminder that regardless of race the enslaved were always American. 

Juneteenth

Juneteenth

Community gatherings are another way to celebrate Juneteenth. Be sure to add Elmira's Juneteenth Celebration to your annual events calendar. So that you can connect with the community and support locally Black-owned businesses, artists, and organizations. 

Juneteenth