UTICA, N.Y. (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY-TV) ––– The Mid Utica Neighborhood Preservation Corp. (MUNPC) once again held the Juneteenth/African American Heritage Day.
The annual event took place on Saturday, June 19, 2021 at Chancellor Park which is located at Elizabeth, Kent, Bleecker, and Academy Street in Utica.
The event was for all ages and celebrated heritage, culture and pride while acknowledging the national day of Juneteenth (short for “June Nineteenth” or called by some “African American Independence Day”) – where in 1865, federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas to ensure that all enslaved people knew they were free. It marked a full two and half years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation.
Utica’s Juneteenth Celebration featured live music, food, health and education vendors, kids activities, games, history, spoken word, an art project featuring educators from Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute. Most importantly, it was a chance for the community to join in fellowship for one of the first public in-person events as pandemic guidelines are lifting.
Participants were encouraged to bring lawn chairs and any individuals who were not vaccinated were required to wear a mask.
12:00 noon – Open program with “Lift Every Voice and Sing”
1:00/1:30 p.m. – Live Music by Trump Tight 315
4:00 p.m. – Cassandra Lockwood-Harris
Also featured was Kids’ Activities by Teoka Mohammed: Black History Bingo, Black Pride Bingo, Potato Sack Race, Jump Rope Competition Relay Racing, Water Balloons and more!
Facilitator Robbie Dancy said, “This event is needed more than ever this year. After over a year of distancing, we are ready to come together to socialize with our friends, family and neighbors and what better way to do so than to celebrate Juneteenth together.”