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Celebrate Juneteenth
issued by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863 and even after the official end of the Civil War in May, 1865.  When their freedom was enforced,
African Americans in Texas celebrated jubilantly, establishing Juneteenth as America's second Independence Day and their first day of true
freedom.  Juneteenth has historically been commemorated with church services, communal picnics and parades — a tradition that continues to
this day. These historical facts make Juneteenth important to acknowledge, appreciate and celebrate by attending Madison Juneteenth 2017.

A second reason that you and your family should attend the Madison Juneteenth Celebration is that it is the largest and most well attended African
American event in Madison. Throughout decades, the number of people attending this celebration has increased from one thousand to as many
as five thousand people.  At Juneteenth, you can see people from all walks of life; African American millionaires, business people, artists, single
parents, really the full spectrum of African Americans in Madison.  I enjoy meeting people at Juneteenth that I don’t regularly get to see. There are
children who are growing up, teenagers eager to show off their fine, hip clothing and wonderful elders who come out in the cool before the sun
gets too hot for them.  Juneteenth is a special opportunity in Madison, Wisconsin to be surrounded by African Americans engaging in their history
and culture through a welcoming family celebration.  Madison Juneteenth literally has something exciting for all ages to do, see or experience.  

The third reason that you and your family should attend the Madison Juneteenth Celebration is to be immersed in African American culture and
traditions.  At Juneteenth, you can find excellent food; from BBQ, to red soda pop, fantastic desserts and other soul food standards. There are
ethnic vendors who offer the same tasty food selections from the earliest Juneteenth celebrations like strawberry soda, red desserts, grilled
meats, tea cakes, sweet potato pies, potato salad, greens and other dishes that take you back down South with memories of your family’s great
cooks.  There are areas that focus on different areas of Black culture: Heritage, Church, Youth, Children, Health and Old School with a main stage,
just to name a few of the offerings.  Juneteenth kicks-off with a parade in the best tradition of this hundreds plus year old celebration and offers
the entire Madison Community the opportunity to applaud and appreciate African Americans.
Madison Juneteenth 2017 will be celebrated on Saturday, June 17, from noon until 6 p.m. at
the Labor Temple on Park and Wingra, because Penn Park is currenly undergoing
rennovations. The theme is “Passing on the Spirit of Freedom” and the annual parade will
start at 10:45 a.m. in the Fountain of Life Church parking lot at 633 W. Badger.

There are three good reasons that you and your family should attend the Madison
Juneteenth Celebration.

The first and most important reason is to honor the legacy of freedom. Juneteenth is a
celebration with its origins rooted in the African American past. It was created by newly
freed Black people to celebrate their liberation from chattel slavery in the Southwest on
June 19, 1865. Texas continued slavery while African Americans living everywhere else
were freed. Union General Gordon Granger, with armed troops, had to go down to
Galveston, Texas to enforce freedom for African Americans in this state, which means that
Texas enslaved African Americans years after the Emancipation Proclamation was