Juneteenth commemorated with events across Metro Detroit, state

Amelia Benavides-Colón
The Detroit News

Juneteenth, observed every year on June 19, has been recognized by 47 states as a holiday to celebrate the emancipation of slaves in 1865. Organizations across Metro Detroit have planned events for families and friends to honor the day. 

According to the official Juneteenth website, the day is meant to "commemorate African American freedom and emphasize education and achievement." Events in Michigan include a variety of speakers, performances and even an organized walk.

Here's a schedule of events:


Juneteenth Jubilee Freedom Weekend: June 17-20, Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. The museum will host a virtual screening of "Juneteenth: Lift Every Voice," a film documenting the anthem on June 17. That will be followed by the free screening of the film "Concrete Cowboy," starring Idris Elba and Caleb McLaughlin at Campus Martius Park on June 18. The grand finale will be a "Juneteenth Jubilee Stroll" along Detroit’s Livernois Avenue of Fashion that will promote education, economics, and Black-owned businesses on June 19.

Juneteenth In Detroit Family Day: noon-8 p.m. Saturday. The 11th annual event will have food, music, games, challenges, keynote speakers, Father’s Day tug of war, Mr./Ms. Juneteenth and more. Maheras Gentry Park, 12550 Avondale, Detroit. Free.

Juneteenth Freedom Festival, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, Parkland C2 Pavilion, Dearborn Heights. Sponsored by the Dearborn Heights Community & Cultural Relations Commission, there will be a variety of food vendors, speakers, performances and activities for people of all ages. Parkland C2 Pavilion is located at 6500 in Parkland, Dearborn Heights.

Dearborn Heights Community & Cultural Relations Commission Juneteenth event flyer

Hamtramck’s Juneteenth Clean Up: 2-6 p.m. Saturday. Hamtramck residents are welcome to participate in a neighborhood cleanup at Sarah Garrett Park and the surrounding area. Trash bags and gloves as well as hand sanitizer will be provided to all participants. Volunteers are needed to help haul filled trash bags to area dumpsters. Sarah Garrett Park, 11369 Dequindre St., Hamtramck. For more information, call Dwydell Garrett at (586) 871-6682.

Juneteenth Mobility Stroll & Roll, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday in downtown Dearborn,City Hall Park. The East Dearborn Downtown Development Authority is hosting its first annual celebration as part of its Homage to Black Excellence programs. The family-friendly event will include a 2.2 mile walk and roll beginning at Michigan Avenue and Schaefer Road before making its way east along Michigan and Wyoming avenues and back to City Hall. The event will include speakers that include Rep. Debbie Dingell, Mayor John B. O'Reilly Jr., Detroit Councilwoman Raquel Castañeda-López, and more. The walk and roll is free to participate and more information about pre-registration can be found at downtowndearborn.org. 13615 Michigan Ave., Dearborn.

As In Heaven, LLC's "Juneteenth in the D" will feature a festival and concert from noon-10:30 p.m. The free event will highlight group dancing. The group plans to hold the festival at Dabis MBAD African Bead Museum, 6559 Grand River Ave., Detroit.

The Archdiocese of Detroit will host an outdoor celebration at St. Charles Lwange Parish, 2 p.m.-6 p.m. Saturday with a reunion-style picnic open for families. 10400 Stoepel St., Detroit. Visit aod.org/events.

As in Heaven Juneteenth event flyer


Detroit Black Wall Street will celebrate Juneteenth from 1:45 p.m.-6 p.m. Saturday with an event that includes DJ YNot and a variety of local vendors. The free event will be held indoors and outdoors and feature shopping, performances and food and drink specials. 21380 Coolidge Hwy. in Oak Park. Visit nationalblackguide.com/black-events.

Juneteenth Film Festival: This second annual month-long film festival at the Emagine Royal Oak benefits the United Negro College Fund. The film festival, which began June 4, continues with screenings of June 18: "Spiderman: Into the Spider-Verse" and "Get Out" on Friday, and "Ray," "MLK/FBI," "Whose Streets" and "Just Mercy" on June 25. Tickets are $5. Emagine Royal Oak; 200 N. Main St., Royal Oak; (248) 414-1000; emagine-entertainment.com. 

Lansing REO Town Juneteenth event flyer

Juneteenth Madison Heights 2021, noon-5 p.m. Saturday. Hosted by the city of Madison Heights Human Relations and Equity Commission, this family-friendly event will feature educational exhibits, live entertainment featuring the Brazeal Dennard Chorale and the Smoke Jones Detroit Band, food trucks and other activities. 360 W. 13 Mile, Civic Center Park. Visit madisonheightsjuneteenth.com.

The annual Juneteenth Family Reunion will take place all day Saturday at Catalpa Oaks Park in Southfield. Since 2019, the Family Reunion focuses on empowering, educating, and entertaining through cultural events. Located at 27705 Greenfield, 1,250 attendees are expected at this year's socially distanced event filled with live entertainment, music, games and more. More information, including an event packet, can be found at juneteenthfamreunion.org.


Juneteenth Festival, 4 p.m.-10 p.m. Saturday. Lansing's REO Town neighborhood will host its first family-friendly event that will feature live performances, Black-owned businesses, food and activities. Located at 1131 S. Washington Ave. between South St. and East Elm, Lansing. A list of vendors and performers can be found at juneteenthfestival517.com.


The Holland Museum Cultural Lens Series will host a virtual event to honor Juneteenth. Storyteller and performance artist Miz Rosie Chapman will share the story of Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad at 10 a.m. This free, virtual event is open to all ages. Registration is required and can be found at hollandmuseum.org.

Holland Museum Juneteenth event flyer

The University of Michigan's Center for the Education of Women will host a virtual Juneteenth event on Friday, June 18 from 8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Put together by the Women of Color Task Force, the theme for the 2021 event is "Improving Intercultural Race Relations to Develop Intercultural Solidarity.” The event will include several speakers and two main panel sessions. The free event requires pre-registration, which can be found at cew.umich.edu.