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Quad Cities groups prepare to celebrate Juneteenth

(WEAU)
Published: Jun. 18, 2020 at 5:54 PM CDT
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Quad Cities community members are preparing for Juneteenth, a holiday that goes back over 150 years. The holiday is known as the United States' second independence day and the longest-running African-American holiday.

There are two events in the Quad Cities on Friday night. A

event will be in Rock Island outside "The House" which is a church on 5th Avenue. It will start at 7 p.m. and feature several speakers. TV6 will interview one of the organizers on our News at Noon on Juneteenth.

A virtual Juneteenth event will be starting at 5 p.m. Tracy White is one of the organizers and is encouraging everyone to attend, "we're all in our silos, right? We tend to eat, live, and communicate with those around us. I think virtually gives you that blanket of comfort that you can be in your home, you can be on your patio, you can be at a park but still be able to experience it." Not only will the event being virtual help to stop the spread of COVID-19, but it could open the conversation to others who may not traditionally attend.

There have been Juneteenth events all over the country. In 1865, the last set of slaves found out they were freed on June 19th, hence the name "Juneteenth."

The celebrations often include prayer, food, and worship. This year, Juneteenth events have extra attention due to the Black Lives Matter movement gaining nationwide attention following the death of George Floyd. "I think this year especially, we will place emphasis on everything we've overcome. We are seeing some of the darkest parts of history repeating in the current day. So healing does need to take place. While we strengthen the African American community, we invite the entire community to participate and understand our struggles and our successes as well."

By taking part in Juneteenth celebrations, you can learn something new and understand a perspective you may not otherwise know. To join the virtual event, all you have to do is go on their Facebook page,

.

You can watch both the Multi-Church celebration and the virtual Juneteenth celebrations on our TV6 News app or any of our streaming platforms.