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Diversity Events

Chippewa Valley Will Celebrate Juneteenth in Carson Park

event to feature musical and spoken-word performances, and will recognize Uniting Bridges’ Diversity Award recipients

V1 Staff |

SOL’S GOT SOUL. Reggae/funk/rock/jazz collective Irie Sol will be part of Eau Claire’s Juneteenth celebration at Carson Park’s Pines Pavilion on June 19.
SOL’S GOT SOUL. Reggae/funk/rock/jazz collective Irie Sol will be part of Eau Claire’s Juneteenth celebration at Carson Park’s Pines Pavilion on June 19.

A celebration of freedom, diversity, and achievement is slated for 2pm on Saturday, June 19, at the Pine Pavilion in Carson Park. Juneteenth – celebrated annually on June 19 – recognizes the day in 1865 that Union soldiers, led by Maj. Gen Gordon Granger, landed at Galveston, Texas, with the news that the Civil War was over and enslaved people were free in the defeated Confederacy.

This year’s event features entertainment from regional artists Irie Sol, Naalia, and Samantha Moon, with a spoken-word performance from Daminius the Artist, as well as a presentation of Uniting Bridges’ inaugural Diversity Awards.

Dr. Selika Ducksworth-Lawton, professor of history at UW-Eau Claire, is president of Uniting Bridges, a nonprofit group advocating on behalf of underrepresented groups in the Chippewa Valley. Ducksworth-Lawton is thrilled that the Juneteenth event can take place in person once again, and she has helped to coordinate a day full of history, music, and education aimed at uniting a community she says is enriched by its diversity.

“We are so glad to gather together to celebrate Juneteenth. Uniting Bridges is happy to work with our partners to bring the community together for this event,” Ducksworth-Lawton says. “Community, government, education and nonprofits working together is what makes this a stronger, more welcoming, and more inclusive community. Juneteenth celebrates that unity and achievement in the face of obstacles. Juneteenth is a gift that is for everyone, as we celebrate the end of slavery and the U.S. Army’s triumph in the Civil War. It was the first step to truly making us one nation, indivisible.”

Nonprofit organizations dedicated to social justice and equity initiatives – including Joining Our Neighbors, Advancing Hope (JONAH) and Chippewa Valley Votes – will offer information on their organizations at the celebration. For more information, visit facebook.com/ECJuneteenthCelebration.