Buffalo, NY - Mayor Byron W. Brown was joined by Juneteenth Festival organizers and others today in raising the Pan-African flag in Niagara Square in honor of Buffalo’s 44th Annual Juneteenth Festival, which will take place June 15th and 16th.
“The City of Buffalo is proudly home to one of the largest Juneteenth festivals in the U.S., celebrating African-American heritage and culture through music, dance, and of course, food,” Mayor Brown said. “This festive and popular event preserves the African American culture in our City and gets bigger and better every year, bringing visitors to our City, and providing an important celebration for our residents citywide.”
The Juneteenth Festival of Buffalo Parade kicks off at 11 a.m., Saturday, June 15th, at the corner of Genesee and Moselle and ends at MLK Park. There will also be a Praise and Worship Service at the park that evening, from 6 to 8 p.m.
Both days will feature a live entertainment stage, arts and cultural stage, vendor’s market, historical exhibits, Underground Railroad tours, science fair, children’s activities and an amazing selection of food, from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.
The mission of the Juneteenth Festival of Buffalo, Inc., a nonprofit organization, is to actively preserve and promote the broad spectrum of African American heritage through educational and cultural activities that benefit the community as a whole.
Juneteenth is the oldest known observance of the ending of slavery in the United States. The celebration began on June 19, 1865, the day Major General Gordon Granger of the Union Army rode into Galveston, Texas in final execution of the Emancipation Proclamation - two years after President Abraham Lincoln signed it. Juneteenth celebrations today commemorate that memorable day in 1865 and emphasize the achievements of African Americans.