Beginning on Jun. 9, the 17th Annual 10 Days of Juneteenth Jubilee Celebrations and Juneteenth Festival, organized by the local nonprofit Texas Association of Black Personnel in Higher Education-Corpus Christi (TABPHE-CC) will kick off its celebration of the holiday.
The significance of the ten-day celebration leading up to the Jun. 19 holiday is commemorative of the ten days it took Major General Gordon Granger to ride to Galveston, Texas where he would read and announce the Emancipation Proclamation in 1865.
This order informed Texans of the Proclamation from the Executive of the United States, thereby freeing all slaves. It was then that Juneteenth was born, annually commemorating the freeing of slaves, with Texas being the first state to declare the celebration a state holiday. Despite its historical significance, Juneteenth wasn’t recognized as a federal holiday until 2021, when President Joe Biden signed the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act into law.
“It is our hope that the community is shown the full spirit and reasons behind Juneteenth becoming a federal holiday,” TABPHE-CC President Simone Sanders shared. “The principles of celebrating the fight for freedom, liberation, self-reliance and advancements in unity are pieces and components of these celebrations and one of the main reasons why we not only celebrate the day itself but also include the 10 days leading up to the notice from General Granger.”
This year’s lineup of events organized by TABPHE-CC will feature a continued and expanded focus on health and wellness. An in-depth anxiety and depression workshop will be held on Jun. 13 at the E.L. Harvin Center (Retama Room) on Del Mar College’s Heritage Campus from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Guest Speaker Mirakal McGill, an LPC-Associate and RPT-Trained Therapist, will guide attendees through a workshop centered around the recognition and management of anxiety and depression.
In addition to the mental health workshop, TABPHE-CC has also included a series of free health screenings and health events centered around diabetes education throughout the 10 days. “It is our plan to continue expanding our health awareness programs as well as our educational programs that focus on helping the community,” Sanders said.
The Juneteenth Festival will be held on Jun. 17 at Water’s Edge Park from 4 – 10 p.m. and will feature a 5K run/walk, food trucks, vendors, a kids zone area and live entertainment, including Kingdom of Christ Community Singers, Top Shlef SA, Bayou City Brass Band, Juvenile and more.
The schedule of events is as follows:
JUNE 9 – The 2023 Juneteenth Kickoff will be held at Nueces Brewing & Barbecue from 6 – 8 p.m. and is free to attend.
JUNE 11 – A Sunday Service will be hosted at Brooks AME Worship Center in memory of Reverand Adam Carrington.
JUNE 12, 13 & 15 – A free diabetes health screening hosted by the Healthy South Texas Mobile Medical Unit will take place from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. on Jun. 12 in the Ovel Williams Senior Center parking lot, from 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. on Jun. 13 at the Del Mar College Heritage Campus and from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. on Jun. 15 in the Walmart Supercenter parking lot.