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Wed, Oct

Juneteenth celebrations in Los Angeles

Photos by Jason Lewis

Community

There will be Juneteenth events in the Los Angeles and Inglewood throughout the weekend, including the return of the Kingdom Day Parade.

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By Tracy Edwards

Juneteenth is a day of Black pride, Black power, Black joy, and a day where Black people in the greater Los Angeles area come together to showcase Black culture at its finest.  This is a day to wear clothing with unapologetically Black messaging.

There will be several events in Los Angeles and Inglewood to celebrate this national holiday.  

The People’s Juneteenth 2022 Festival - Leimert Park, Sunday June 19, 10 A.M. - 7 P.M.

While slavery happened in the South and the Juneteenth holiday began in Texas, it still has great meaning to people in the Los Angeles area.

“It marks the official end of chattle slavery in the U.S.,” said Williams “Billion Godsun” Campbell, a member of Africa Town Enterprise.  “Considering that a number of people in Los Angeles have migrated from areas like Texas and other areas in the South, there’s a direct historical linage that a lot of us do have to slavery.”

Africa Town Enterprise is partnering with the African Village Vendors Association to host The People’s Juneteenth 2022 festival along Degnan Boulevard.  

“We are incorporating as much of Black L.A. as we can,” Campbell said.  “Black L.A. consists of a multitude of different cultures, and people from different areas.  So we are going to reflect the diasporic culture of Black America from hip hop to R&B, to jazz, to those who practice traditional drumming and traditional dancing.  The same thing in the clothing.  We’re going to have people who make more contemporary fashion, and those who make more historical clothing and jewelry.  The same thing with the food.  We’re going to have a multi-diasporic cuisine available.”

The festival will also feature discussions by Downtown Crenshaw, which will speak about their fight against gentrification in Los Angeles; Gorilla RX Wellness, which will speak about social equity, and how they fought for Black people to have equal rights to participate in the cannabis industry; Black Lives Matter - Los Angeles, which will speak about the People’s Budget, which is designed to reallocate tax dollars from the police department to programs that will benefit the community; and Denise Estelle’s Honor Thy Father program.

For more information, follow @africatownenterprise on Instagram.

Lula Washington Dance Theatre’s “Juneteenth: A Classical Music and Dance Concert” - Sunday June 19, 12 P.M. - 5 P.M.

Lula Washington Dance Theatre will host a Juneteenth dance concert with performances by Dwight Trible and the Fernando Pullum Youth Jazz Orchestra, and world premiere choreography by Lula Washington performed by the Lula Washington Dance Company.

The orchestra will perform the composition of “Pages from Negro History” by African American composer William Grant Still and narrated by Dale Madison.

The free outdoor festival opens with a complimentary barbecue lunch by Chef Marilyn for the first 300 people to RSVP.

For more information and to RSVP visit Eventbrite at https://bit.ly/3GJhmuQ.

Los Angeles Black History Month Festival Juneteenth Festival - Westchester Park, Sunday, June 19, 10 A.M. - 6 P.M.

The L.A. Black History Month Festival and Open Arms Food Pantry & Resource Center, in partnership with the Department of Cultural Affairs, will host the Juneteenth Art x Culture Festival 2022.  This event will feature notable speakers and performers such as Supervisor Holly Mitchell and Congresswoman Maxine Waters.  The event will also feature a marketplace, food, live music, and a children’s zone.

For more information visit www.lablackhistorymonthfestival.com.

Leimert Park Juneteenth Festival - Leimert Park, Saturday June 18, 12 P.M, - 9 P.M.

The Leimert Park Juneteenth Festival will be a celebration of Black freedom by honoring the ancestors and local Black communities through art, music, food, and education.  

The festival will take place on Degnan Boulevard, and will feature three musical stages, two DJ stages, a spoken word stage, and over 300 Black venders.  It is not just a market, but a curated experience featuring great food, drinks, music, art, culture, and networking opportunities.

“There will be amazing food, amazing entertainment, and an amazing social environment,” Alfred Torregano, who is known as DJ QwessCoast.  “You’re going to come and your soul will be fed.  But as you take a deeper dive you’ll hone in on community calls to action so that we can reimagine how we do business with each other; how we look at our own neighbors in our communities.  We’re going to see a large diaspora of music on the stage.  There will be something for everybody.  We want to build the intergenerational relationships within our communities where our elders and our young folks need to have more conversations together.  We’re looking to celebrate our Blackness, our liberation, our independence.”

For more information visit www.leimertparkjuneteenth.com

Kingdom Day Parade - Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, Monday June 20, 10 A.M.

The Kingdom Day Parade is annually held in January on the Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday.  It was canceled the last two years because of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Instead of waiting until 2023 to resume the parade, the parade will be held on the day that the Juneteenth holiday is observed by the federal government.  The parade’s grand marshal is Congresswoman Karen Bass and the celebrity grand marshal is Issa Rae.

For more information, visit www.kingdomdayparade.org.

 

Juneteenth at the Culver Steps - Sunday June 19, 1 P.M. - 6 P.M. 9300 Culver Blvd.

Mayor Dr. Daniel Lee and the Equity and Human Relations Advisory Committee (EHRAC) invite the community to a Juneteenth celebration on June 19 from 1-6 PM at The Culver Steps in the heart of Downtown Culver City! Mayor Lee, Culver City’s first Black Mayor, will lead this special event in celebration of Black music, spoken word and dance. Aloe Blacc, Will Gittens, Benkadi African Drummers and others are slated to perform during the festivities: https://bit.ly/3QfpFD4

 

Juneteenth Celebration at Sip & Sonder - Inglewood, Sunday, June 19, 10 A.M. - 3 P.M.

Sip & Sonder will have outdoor activities, DJ sets, and coffee shop giveaways.

“We really take this day to celebrate Black joy, and Black being in existence,” said co-owner Shanita Nicholas.  “This is really a day to reflect.  That’s a reflection on Black history and current Black state of affairs.  Being able to carve out those moments to reflect with one another about our common experiences; the good and the bad.”

www.sipandsonder.com

Miss Juneteenth L.A. Scholarship Pageant - Miracle Theater Inglewood, Saturday June 18, 5 P.M. - 7 P.M.

The Miss Juneteenth L.A. scholarship pageant honors the ancestors and celebrates academic excellence.  This event was created to give an opportunity to girls ages 13-18 living in the greater Los Angeles area to earn scholarships for college. In addition, the girls will attend leadership and etiquette training while also participating in a community service project.

For more information visit www.missjuneteenthla.com

California Reparations Task Force listening session - Fernando Pullum Community Art Center in Leimert Park, Sunday June 19, 12 P.M.

The National Assembly of American Slavery Descendants Los Angeles (NAASDLA) and the Coalition For A Just And Equitable California (CJEC), will be hosting CA AB 3121 Task Force listening session sponsored by the California Department of Justice.  This historic two-day event will begin June 18 from 12pm - 6pm, where NAASDLA & CJEC will be hosting a mixer at Hot and Cool Café in Leimert Park.  This session will be for the public to learn about the California Task Force, hear stories, songs and spoken word about African American history, as well as listen to experts on various themes central to reparations such as criminal justice, land rights, cannabis equity, genealogy etc. On Sunday, June 19 from 12pm - 6pm, members of the CA Task Force will appear in person at the Fernando Pullum Community Art Center in Leimert Park to hear the community’s thoughts and answer direct questions from the audience.

For more information visit www.naasdla.org and www.cjec-official.org