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Leah Cast
Director of Communications
Office: (409)797-5152
lcast@galvestoncvb.com

Ivette Wilhelm
Public Relations Manager
Office: (409)797-5124
iwilhelm@galvestoncvb.com

Mary Beth Bassett
Public Affairs Manager
Office: (409)797-5121
mbassett@galvestoncvb.com


Galveston Island Convention & Visitors Bureau Press Room
Media Contact
Ivette Wilhelm
Public Relations Manager
Galveston Island Convention & Visitors Bureau
Office(409)797-5124
Email: iwilhelm@galvestoncvb.com

Birthplace of Juneteenth Celebrates Emancipation with Festivities in Galveston June 7-24


GALVESTON ISLAND, Texas (May 7, 2014) – When you head to Galveston this June, you’ll be coming home where it all began as the island hosts several days of festivities to celebrate  Juneteenth – a holiday that originated in this historic beach town.
This year’s festivities will include a variety of events, including festivals, picnics, African-American heritage exhibits, reenactments and concerts. The annual reading of the Emancipation Proclamation in front of the official Juneteenth monument will take place June 19 at Galveston’s Ashton Villa to help commemorate June 19, 1865 – the date the last slaves were freed in the South.
Here’s a look at the major events planned for Galveston’s Juneteenth festivities in 2014:

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Artist Reception featuring Brendan Martinez – “Found in Translation”
Time:  5 p.m. - 9 p.m.
Admission: Free
Location: G. Lee Gallery, 2215 Post Office Street, Galveston
Contact:  (409) 370-7350
Description: The G. Lee Gallery will host an artist reception featuring the work of artist Brendan Martinez. The event is free and open to the general public.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Juneteenth Development Corporation Scholarship Gala
Time:  7 p.m.
Tickets:  Adults $15/Children $7.50 at the door
Location:  Old Central Cultural Center, 2627 Avenue M, Galveston
Contact:  Dorothy Brown (409) 762-0063 or Archie Ruth DeClout (409) 765-6120
Description: Young ladies ages 17 to 22 will compete for scholarships and prizes. The first place winner will be crowned Miss Juneteenth Ambassador. Contestants will be judged on an oral presentation of their goals and aspirations, a creative talent, formal wear and a question and answer session.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Al Edwards’ Juneteenth Banquet
Time:  7 p.m.
Tickets:  $35
Location:  Old Central Cultural Center, 2627 Avenue M, Galveston
Contact:  Pete Henley (409) 392-0317 or Douglas Matthews (409) 599-5520
Description: The state theme “Come on Home Where It All Began” highlights the history of Juneteenth and its importance to the community and heritage.  The banquet speaker is State Representative Sylvester Turner of Houston. Sponsorships are available at $350, $500 and $1,000.  Individual tickets are $35. Proceeds will benefit the Old Central Cultural Center. 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

St. Vincent’s House Gospel by the Sea Benefit Concert
Time:  6 p.m.
Admission: Free with ticket
Location:  Greater St. Matthew Church, 6333 Highway 6, Hitchcock, Texas
Contact:  Michael Jackson or Linda Cole at (409) 763-8521
Description: Please join St. Vincent’s House for the annual concert for Galveston’s Juneteenth celebration. Call ahead for tickets.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

9th Annual Juneteenth Family Day at Stringfellow Orchards
Time:  11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Admission: Free
Location:  7902 State Highway 6, Hitchcock, Texas
Contact:  Samuel Collins, III (409) 256-3822
Description: Activities for the day include historical reenactments, games for children of all ages, music and performances at Stringfellow Orchards. Stringfellow Orchards was owned by Henry Martyn Stringfellow (1839–1912), a successful businessman in the late 1880’s. Because of his success, Mr. Stringfellow was able to pay orchard workers one dollar a day (when the going wage was fifty cents). This enabled workers, mostly freed slaves, the opportunity to better take care of their families and progress after Emancipation.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Juneteenth at Jack Johnson Park
Time:  1 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Admission: Free
Location:  2601 Avenue M, Galveston
Contact:  Douglas Matthews (409) 599-5520
Description: Enjoy local entertainment and refreshments at the pavilion. Jack Johnson Park was dedicated in November 2012 and is operated by the Old Central Cultural Center Board of Directors. The community park recognizes its native son, John Arthur “Jack” Johnson, born March 31, 1878. Jack Johnson became the first African American to win the world Heavyweight Boxing Championship in 1908.  A life-size statue was placed in the park in his honor. 


Wednesday, June 18, 2014

GHF Presents “The Making of the Underground Railroad: From Slavery to Freedom”
Time: 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Admission: Free. Ages 6-12 welcome with adult supervision.
Location:  Menard House, 3302 Avenue O, Galveston
Contact:  Call (409) 750-9108 ext. 1305 to register
Description: Since 2002, as part of Galveston’s annual Juneteenth activities, Galveston Historical Foundation has produced an Underground Railroad program to educate local children about American slaves who escaped to freedom and the abolitionists who helped them. The event begins in the 1925 Menard Hall, with an introduction and music component, courtesy of Naomi Carrier Grundy, after which the group will move to the historic 1838 Menar House (located next to Menard Hall), where they will be introduced to several characters associated with the Underground Railroad. The historic house will also be open for self-guided tours.


Thursday, June 19, 2014

35th Annual Al Edwards’ Emancipation Proclamation Reading and Prayer Breakfast
Time:  8:30 a.m.
Admission: Free
Location: Ashton Villa, 2300 Broadway, Galveston
Contact: Douglas Matthews (409) 599-5520
Description: The Emancipation Proclamation will be read to commemorate the historic event that occurred in Galveston on June 19, 1865, two years after the proclamation was enacted. Galveston holds the distinction of being the place of the first reading of the Proclamation in the South. Texas State Representative Al Edwards sponsored two legislative bills establishing Juneteenth as a state holiday.  Free breakfast will be provided after the program.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Juneteenth at Jack Johnson Park
Time:  12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Admission: Free
Location:  2601 Avenue M, Galveston
Contact:  Douglas Matthews (409) 599-5520
Description: Enjoy local entertainment and refreshments at the pavilion. Jack Johnson Park was dedicated in November 2012 and is operated by the Old Central Cultural Center Board of Directors. The community park recognizes its native son, John Arthur “Jack” Johnson, born March 31, 1878. Jack Johnson became the first African American to win the world Heavyweight Boxing Championship in 1908.  A life-size statue was placed in the park in his honor. 

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Annual Annie Mae Charles Juneteenth Picnic
Time:  11 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Admission: Free
Location:  Wright Cuney Park, 41st Street and Ball Street, Galveston
Contact: Anna Fields (409) 939-4674 or Barbara Gordon (409) 599-8050
Description: The picnic includes refreshments, music, activities and a special program including the reading of the Emancipation Proclamation.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Reedy Chapel A.M.E. Church Historic March and Inspirational Program
Time: 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Admission: Free
Location: Old Galveston Court House, 21st Street and Sealy Street
Contact: Sharon B. Gillins (409) 974-4839
Description: Reedy Chapel A.M.E. Church will conduct its traditional reenactment of the emancipation procession of January 1, 1866 "from the Court House to the Colored Church on Broadway" as documented in period newspapers. An inspirational program will be held in the church sanctuary, featuring African American spirituals, stirring speakers and performances and a reading of the Emancipation Proclamation.  Traditional Juneteenth refreshments will be served following the program. 

Friday, June 20, 2014

Book Signing “T. Ellis Fine Art” by Ted Ellis
Time:  12 p.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: Free
Location:  G. Lee Gallery, 2215 Post Office Street, Galveston
Contact:  409-370-7350
Description: Author and artist Ted Ellis will be signing his limited edition “T. Ellis Fine Art,” featuring over 110 prints of his artwork.   

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Galveston Juneteenth Parade
Time: 1 p.m.
Admission: Free
Location: 22nd Street and Harborside Drive, Galveston
Contact: Rosalyn Jackson (409) 497-3203
Description: The parade will start at 22nd Street and Harborside Drive, travel to 22nd and Strand streets, turn right on Strand Street to 25th Street, turn left on 25th Street to Avenue M,  turn  right on Avenue M to 27th Street in front of Jack Johnson Park. Marching bands, drill teams, decorated cars and performers from Galveston and other areas will excite the crowd along the route.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Galveston Historical Foundation and Texas Historical Commission
Juneteenth Marker Dedication Ceremony

Time:  10 a.m.
Admission: Free
Location: 22nd Street and Strand Street (Old Galveston Square parking lot)
Contact:  Dwayne Jones (409) 765-3486 or Hank Thierry (409) 771-4470
Description: The Galveston Historical Foundation will hold a dedication ceremony through the Texas Historical Commission to formally recognize the events in Galveston that occurred on June 19, 1865 as having historical significance and meaning to the citizens of Texas. The event is free and open to the general public. After the ceremony, visitors are invited to enjoy live entertainment sponsored by the Galveston Island Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Take it to the Wood “Juneteenth Celebration” Shiloh A.M.E. Church
Time:  11 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Admission: Free
Location:  1310 29th Street (MLK Blvd.)
Contact:  Reverend Kevin Hodge, Sr., Pastor (409) 762-3646
Description: This celebration includes food, games and entertainment for the whole family.

Galveston Historical Foundation Juneteenth Community Concert
Time:  6 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Admission: Free
Location: Saengerfest Park located, 23rd Street and Strand Street, Galveston
Contact:  Jami Durham (409) 789-4113 or Hank Thierry (409) 771-4470
Description: The Juneteenth Community Concert is sponsored by the Galveston Historical Foundation. Historically, the first formal celebrations of Emancipation and Abolition were celebrated in the public square. The concert will feature the music of Houston-based band, Bourbon Street.  The concert is free and open to the general public.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

NIA Culture Center Screening of PBS Film American Experience: Freedom Summer
Time:  6 p.m.
Admission: Free
Location:  Old Central Cultural Center, 2627 Ave. M, Galveston
Contact:  Sue Johnson (409) 765-7086 or Suejohnson54@hotmail.com
Description: The documentary film, American Experience: Freedom Summer will be screened followed by a panel discussion to reflect on the progress since 1964. 

For a full list of events, please visit www.galveston.com/juneteenth.

About Juneteenth
Many people think slavery ended on September 22, 1862 – the date Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation. In reality, many slaves weren’t freed until much later when news of the proclamation reached their towns. The last of those slaves lived in the South and were freed on June 19, 1865 after the Emancipation Proclamation was read on a harbor pier in Galveston, Texas. This date eventually became known as “Juneteenth.” While celebrations were long held in Galveston and various parts of the country in earlier years, Texas lead the way in making Juneteenth an official state holiday in 1980.Today, Juneteenth is celebrated in more than 40 states throughout the country.

About Galveston Island
Galveston Island is a historic beach town located on the Gulf of Mexico just 50 miles from Houston. The island is best known as a vacation destination, offering 32 miles of beaches, a variety of family attractions, Texas’ premier cruise port and one of the largest and well-preserved concentrations of Victorian architecture in the country, including several National Historic Landmarks. Galveston Island is home to popular amusements such as, Moody Gardens and Schlitterbahn Galveston Island Waterpark, as well as a variety of museums and recreational activities from surfing to birding. For more information on Galveston Island visit www.galveston.com or call 1-888-GAL-ISLE.

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