It took three years for news of President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation to reach Galveston Island, freeing the last of the American slaves. The date — June 19, 1865 — became known as Juneteenth and is celebrated throughout the country. This year, Galveston becomes Juneteenth Central with a week of festivities planned. One of the biggest events is the African-American Museum Juneteenth Festival, which runs Friday and Saturday. The Texas Brass Band and Step Rideau and the Zydeco Outlaws will be among the musical acts. The festival is the end destination for the island’s annual Juneteenth Jubilee Parade on Saturday afternoon. Two tours, a bus tour and a self-guided tour, feature historic African-American sites on the island. Exhibits, gospel concerts, picnics and more are also on the schedule.
The African-American Juneteenth Festival is 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Saturday. Courville Football Stadium, 1307 27th Street, Galveston. Free. For a full schedule of events, call 888-425-4753 or visit www.galveston.com.
Fri., June 15; Sat., June 16, 2012