NEW ORLEANS — After passing unanimously in both the House and Senate, on June 11, 2021, Governor John Bel Edwards signed a bill designating Juneteenth as a Louisiana state holiday.
Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day, Jubilee Day, Liberation Day, or Emancipation Day, commemorates the date in 1865 that the last documented illegally detained slaves learned that they were free, roughly two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed into law.
The news came from Union Major General Gordon Granger, who had been given command of the Department of Texas following the end of the Civil War. Upon arriving in Galveston, Granger delivered the news in one of his first official orders. And thus, the last remaining enslaved African Americans in Texas were freed. The 13th amendment formally abolishing slavery was ratified later that same year.
See the list below for a schedule of events celebrating Juneteenth.
AMC Theatres: “AMC Black Picture Showcase Celebrating Juneteenth”
AMC announced its first-ever AMC Black Picture Showcase Celebrating Juneteenth, featuring an exciting range of Black-led films returning to theatres in honor of Juneteenth— the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States. This weeklong event was created by AMC African American associates as one of many ongoing initiatives to celebrate Black Excellence in film and amplify Black voices at AMC.
Beginning Thursday, June 18, through Friday, June, 24, guests everywhere can enjoy some of their favorite classic, contemporary and culturally relevant films for just $5.
For more information about the AMC Black Picture Showcase Celebrating Juneteenth, including a list of this year’s featured films and participating locations in your area, please click here.
St. Augustine Church
Join St. Augustine Church in celebration of Juneteenth at the Tomb of the Unknown Slave, in Tremé.
The event is on June 19 and will begin at 3 p.m.
Reverend Emmanuel Mulenga will be delivering the opening prayer.
There will be a community wreath-laying ceremony at the tomb.
There will also be drumming and tambourine ringing to commemorate the event.
This event is taking place at the St. Augustine Church, located at 1210 Governor Nicholls St, New Orleans, LA 70116.
Ashé Cultural Arts Center Health Fair and Drum Circle
In partnership with New Orleans East Hospital, Ashé CAC invites the community to a day of wellness featuring free vaccinations, health screenings, healing work, and more!
As part of their holistic approach to actualizing equity for all, Ashé recognizes that there is no soul-cial justice without health justice. The dismal health outcomes of Black communities due to centuries of institutionalized racism in our health care system must come to an end.
New Orleans has a special place in the history of Juneteenth. While Texas was the last place to free their slaves, New Orleans was the first. On January 17, 1863, the President’s Proclamation Declaring Slavery Abolished in the United States of America, was read at the St. Charles Theater and was followed by what is considered the first Jubilee celebration, when over 200 formerly enslaved and free people of color marched to Congo Square to celebrate with each other.
Join the Ashé Cultural Arts Center on June 19th in the Ashé parking lot for the Long Walk to Liberation Drum Circle. The event will feature drummers, dancers, healers, artists, activists, and musicians, all paying homage to this iconic date in our collective struggle.
This year’s Juneteenth drum circle is dedicated to the life and legacy of Portia Pollock.
Virtual Event: The Urban League of Louisiana is celebrating all week
Juneteenth 2021 is this Saturday! The Urban League is celebrating all week by sharing the history and importance of Juneteenth and ways to celebrate. Juneteenth is being celebrated as an official holiday of the state of Louisiana for the first time.
Son of a Saint + Ochsner Health blood drive
Son of a Saint and Ochsner Health are hosting a powerful Juneteenth celebration and community blood drive event on Saturday, June 19th, in partnership with Bayou Road Business Association, and Know NOLA Tours.
The Son of a Saint + Ochsner Health blood drive is open to the public and ALL eligible donors. For every pint collected, Ochsner will donate $10 to our organization.
Juneteenth Ceremony at the Destrehan Plantation
Free admission to the Juneteenth Ceremony.
Located at the Destrehan Plantation – 13034 River Road, Destrehan, LA 70047.
- June 19
- 10:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.
- 45-minutes Unheard Voices Tour
- Free food and drinks
- Live music by Aniyah Bickham
- Genealogy research presentation
- The Black Masking Indians
The New Orleans Museum of Art is inviting visitors to enjoy a day of activities while supporting the ongoing movement for justice, equity, and liberation.
All events and activities are free. Click here to reserve your free ticket for admission to NOMA and the Besthoff Sculpture Garden.
Freedom Day Celebration in Houma
Join in on a Juneteenth celebration for Terrebonne Parish, at the Finding Our Roots African American Museum, in Houma.
The event will take place on Saturday, June 19 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Festivities include free mini mural painting and balloons for kids, snowballs, popcorn ball, a quilting seminar, and dinner plates for sale.
The museum is located at 918 Roussell Street, Houma, LA 70360.
The Chase Family Foundation Juneteenth Celebration
The Chase Family Foundation celebrates Juneteenth with a five-course, formal, sit-down dinner, spoken word & live musical performances.
The dinner is taking place on June 19 at 5:00 p.m.
As the democratic foundation of America is being challenged, the Leah and Edgar “Dooky” Chase Foundation will host a special Juneteenth celebration this year at the iconic restaurant on Orleans Avenue.
The five-course, formal, sit-down dinner event is a fundraiser for the Chase Foundation and one of the first major Juneteenth Celebrations in the New Orleans area.
African American opera, gospel, and popular music singers will highlight the struggles for freedom with stirring renditions of “Negro Spirituals, gospel classics, and current popular songs.”
The historical tribute will feature compelling spoken word led by 4 generations of the Chase family.
Dooky Chase’s Restaurant is located at 2301 Orleans Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70119
CANCELLED: Juan Lafonta & Associates, L.L.C. holds first annual Juneteenth Celebration
On Saturday, June 19, 2021 from 5:00pm to 8:30pm, Juan Lafonta & Associates, L.L.C. will hold the First Annual Juan Lafonta’s Juneteenth Celebration on the New Orleans Lakefront.
The family-friendly celebration will honor Black History and will include free food and snowballs, and fun for the entire family. A fireworks show will conclude the celebration beginning at 8:30 p.m.
The celebration will take place at the Lakefront behind Lakefront Arena between Franklin Avenue and the Seabrook Bridge.