June 19, or “Juneteenth”, marks the day in 1865 the Union army marched into Galveston, signaling the end of the Civil War and the emancipation of slaves. Perhaps more than ever, this year’s holiday is a time for us to come together in both celebration and conversation. And while we’re still limited to how we can gather together physically, here are eleven live-streaming celebrations from around the country that can bring us together virtually!
The National Museum of African American History will celebrate Juneteenth with a series of online events that explore the African-American experience. Events include historical presentations, storytelling, performances, webcasts, and ancestry-tracing workshops. Events are free through the museum’s website, and run all day Friday June 19 and Saturday June 20.
The Museum (MoAD) will host Harlem of the West: The San Francisco Fillmore Jazz Era, a presentation that tells the story of San Francisco’s Fillmore neighborhood in the 1940s and 1950s jazz era (Friday June 19 12 p.m PST). The event is free on Zoom but does require registration. After, Chef-in-Residence Bryant Terry will talk with Brooklyn-based producer and food writer, Nicole A Taylor on Choppin’ It Up with MoAD 3 p.m PST on Instagram Live, free. Then at 4 p.m PST Juneteenth and the Blues with Marcus Shelby will dive into the history of Juneteenth with an hour of live music and poetry (Zoom, registration required, pay-what-you-can 0-$25).
Memphis-based event planner, Cynthia Daniels, has organized this virtual shopping extravaganza to connect consumers with 100 Black businesses from across the country. The one-day shopping event is open from 12-8 p.m CST (free, $10 VIP ticket option gives early admission from 10 a.m.-12 p.m. CST). Vendors and the wide assortment of products – wine, home goods, art, children’s books, beauty products, and hats, to name a few – can be previewed on Instagram.
New York’s SummerStage digital series will celebrate Juneteenth with a full slate of dance performances Friday June 19 from 12 p.m.-8 p.m. EST. Scheduled performers include singer-songwriter Tamir-kali, the ASE Dance Theater Collective, and contemporary dance company RudduR. The day will conclude with a panel discussion, “Reflecting the Times” and a tribute performance of “Hanging Tree”. The event is free on SummerStage’s Instagram and YouTube Channel.
Houston’s Emancipation Park was created by former slaves who wanted a place to commemorate their liberation on June 19. This year, the Park is going virtual with its 148th Juneteenth Celebration with a live ceremony Friday June 19 at 2 p.m CST. The festivities include DJ spins, vocal performances, and a tribute to Al Edwards, the Texas politician who put Juneteenth in the national spotlight (and who died earlier this year). Tickets are free with registration on the website; participants will receive a link by email to join the event.
Austin’s Juneteenth Festival is moving online Friday, June 19 from 6 p.m-10 p.m CST. The festival will feature poetry readings, film screenings, a dance party, art auctions, and a raffle that will benefit community organizations. The festival, which is free with RSVP, will stream on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and Twitch.
The Front Porch Art Collective, a Boston-based Black theater company, closes its week-long Juneteenth celebration this weekend with events all day Friday June 19, Saturday June 20, and Sunday June 21 (all events listed online in EST). Events include musical and theatrical performances, acting workshops, webinars for building anti-racist movements, poetry readings, Zoomba classes, and sketch shows streamed across multiple platforms. Events are free with RSVP through the website. Visit their website for a full schedule.
This live-streaming festival of Zydeco, Blues, and Jazz runs Friday June 19 6 p.m – 12:30 a.m CST and Saturday June 20 4 p.m – 12:30 a.m. CST. Tickets for live streaming on YouTube are available online for $10.
A New Freedom will celebrate Friday June 19 at 6 p.m. CST with a concert by the Chicago Children’s Choir (CCC), founded in 1956 in response to the Civil Rights movement. The concert will also feature Choir alumni and spoken word performance. It will live stream on CCC Facebook Live and YouTube Live.
This virtual dance party will explore the roots of African-American history through innovations in music and dance, featuring sets by DJs from Atlanta, Detroit, New York, and Boston. Fete runs from Friday June 19 8 p.m – Saturday June 20 12 a.m EST. Genres include rock, hip hop, gospel, jazz, blues, and more. The event will stream live on the Boston Institute of Contemporary Art’s website, and is free with donations being accepted for the Ujima Project and the National Bailout Fund.
The family-friendly event will celebrate Juneteenth with storytelling and performances streamed live on Facebook starting Saturday June 20 at 1 p.m EST. It’s hosted by comedian Jessiaca McNabb.