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UNC Collaborating with Community Partners on Inaugural Juneteenth Celebration

Juneteenth: A Family Reunion

June 15, 2022

The University of Northern Colorado’s Marcus Garvey Cultural Center (MGCC), in collaboration with the City of Greeley and powered by PDC Energy, is hosting the first-ever community-wide Juneteenth celebration. The event, scheduled for Friday, June 17, noon to 4 p.m., at the MGCC (928 20th Street, Greeley), is free and open to the public.

This year’s theme is Juneteenth: A Family Reunion and was created to serve as a space and time where Black Northern Coloradans can come together to celebrate liberation while also honoring a legacy of sacrifices made while working towards freedom. 

“While centering Black people and Black culture, we welcome all cultures and identities to come together to celebrate and learn more about the legacy of Juneteenth and the work it took for this day to receive its rightful recognition,” said MGCC Director, Janine Weaver-Douglas, Ed.D. “This event is a moment in time designed to create and be in community in a new and meaningful way.”

“A lot of times we have holidays/celebrations that we don’t fully know the true meaning,” said Alex Reaves, recreation manager at the City of Greeley. “Having the first-ever Juneteenth celebration in the city is a great way to celebrate and bring the community together. This event will not only be a celebration, but also a great opportunity to learn more about Juneteenth.”

This year’s event honors the day of Juneteenth as a day of rest and freedom for participants and attendees. Featured activities include a barbecue, a Black-owned/Black-minded vendor fair, games and music provided by the artist Machadellic

Visit UNC’s Juneteenth website to learn more about vendors, participating organizations and Juneteenth. 

More about Juneteenth 

Juneteenth is the national holiday commemorating the emancipation of the last group of enslaved Africans, located in Texas. Coined as an amalgam of the month and the date, and known as Freedom Day, June 19 marks the date that the last of the enslaved Africans in America were notified of their freedom via the Emancipation Proclamation, which was signed over two years before, on Jan. 1, 1863. June 19 became a federal holiday in 2021, with several states and regions honoring the date for the very first time that year. Long championed by Opal Lee, a retired schoolteacher, Juneteenth is a celebration—a moment for Black people to honor their transition from enslaved to free. 

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