Weekend of Juneteenth celebrations ahead
Written by Pasha Shipp
Justice 4 All Juneteenth Jam
The third edition of the Justice 4 All Juneteenth Jam may be happening the same day as the Grand Rapids Pride Festival, but there’s no reason you can’t enjoy both events. The Juneteenth celebration will be held in Rosa Parks Circle from 1-5pm. Julius Rogers, the founder of Justice 4 All gives guests a taste of what they can expect on June 17th.
“The event this year is going to incorporate several different things that are cool. Along with having Black-owned vendors displaying their products and services throughout the event, we will have performances by Over the Top Academy of Dance and a breakdance battle in commemoration of the fiftieth anniversary of hip-hop. Dancers will be able to register and compete for a $500 prize and entry into the Midwest Breakin’ Battle at the One Peace hip-hop festival on August 13.
“I am really excited to have all the guests come back and continue to experience everything that our amazing Black culture has to offer. The vibes and energy last year were perfect and created an extremely welcoming environment for everyone to take advantage of while at the event. I am excited to see what the vendors have in store for this year as well. I know a lot of them sold out of their products, so I’m looking forward to seeing them shine again this year.
“The federal holiday recognition is a big step in the right direction, however, the impact of the significance of this holiday will not fully be felt until it is more widely recognized. It must be understood that although these federal holiday designations and city proclamations are very much appreciated and needed, they are merely starting points on the necessary journey to true equity for Black Americans. Emancipation for Black citizens in the United States of America was not willingly given, it was fought for and won. So, I believe it is our duty to celebrate Juneteenth as a true day of freedom for all.”