June 19th marks the end of slavery with the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. Cincinnati’s Juneteenth tradition began in 1988 as a neighborhood festival–attracting some 1500 participants to a neighborhood park. As it has grown, the annual Festival has continued to reflect its origins in a racially integrated community, with both multi-racial organization and attendance. In the following years the Festival has mushroomed, with attendance estimates as high as 15-20,000. Festival features have included such diverse, family-centered (and free!) activities as traditional story telling, magic acts, sack races, sweet potato pie bake-off, music (blues, African drumming & dancing, gospel, jazz, reggae, etc.). Festival vendors offered a wide variety of food, clothing, art, folk crafts, ethnic literature, etc. This year the festival will be virtual. Visit http://www.juneteenthcincinnati.org/ for more information.
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