Embrace Juneteenth: Diverse Ways to Celebrate the Holiday in Chicago

Photograph by Clay Banks

Juneteenth commemorates the emancipation of enslaved African Americans in the United States, marking the day when news of their freedom reached Galveston, Texas, on June 19th, 1865. Over the years, Juneteenth has evolved into a nationwide observance, fostering a sense of unity, cultural pride, and reflection on the struggles and achievements of African Americans. In Chicago, there are an array of ways to partake in this holiday, whether it is through education, culture, or simple celebration, we wish to guide you in your choice!

The Emancipation Ball 2023

Experience a world of celebration at The Emancipation Ball, Chicago’s Premier Juneteenth Celebration. This year, Moor’s Brewing Company will host, taking the festivities to new heights as they honor community, culture, and creativity. Enjoy a complimentary open bar, delectable food from black-owned eateries and bakeries, and groove to the beats of renowned DJs!

Juneteenth Freedom Market

Experience the joyous 3rd Annual Juneteenth Freedom Market, hosted by Refine Collective and the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. On Friday, June 16th from 5pm to 9pm, a celebration of Black creativity and entrepreneurship in Chicago will begin. Explore a robust marketplace featuring over 50 local Black-owned businesses, offering unique clothing, accessories, home goods, and beauty products!

Hyde Park Juneteenth Fest

Hyde Park’s highly anticipated Juneteenth festival, organized by HHOH in collaboration with Silver Room, Connect Gallery, and Lululemon, promises a fulfilling celebration. This event aims to connect the community with the spirit of Juneteenth through performances, dance classes, delectable food, and contagious fun. It serves as a platform to embrace unity, cultural pride, and engagement!

Uptown’s Juneteenth Jubilee

Celebrate Juneteenth at the 3rd Annual Juneteenth Jubilee and Resource Fair, hosted by Voice of the People. This beloved event began in 2021 as a way to bring neighbors together and break free from pandemic isolation. Unsurprisingly, it continues to unite, with continuous involvement from community partners, informational tables, and community art. Enjoy free games, prizes, food, and live entertainment amongst this lively honor of Juneteenth!

GoldenGrrl Fest

Immerse yourself in an authentic celebration of Juneteenth at GoldGrrl Fest on Saturday, June 17th. This community-conscious album drop is dedicated to BIPOC emo, goth, and alternative individuals, providing a platform for underrepresented artists to showcase their talent and partake in collaboration. This fest creates a safe space for racialized alternative subcultures to authentically celebrate Black freedom. Through the power of music, this event fosters defiance and taking pride in who you truly are.

Juneteenth BBQ at DuSable Black History Museum

Join the DuSable Museum in their annual Juneteenth Festival! Celebrate the Juneteenth holiday with the community on the 19th from 10am to 8pm. Enjoy family activities, live music, delicious food, and refreshing drinks. Don’t miss the special Hip-Hop Communiversity discussion session with the iconic Kool Moe Dee, as they honor the 50th anniversary of Hip-Hop.

LaSalle Hotel

Experience a transformative sound meditation at the LaSalle Hotel in Chicago to celebrate Juneteenth! Led by Certified Crystal Healer and Sound Healing Practitioner Christie R. Edwards, this session offers emotional, spiritual, mental, and physical healing. Immerse yourself in the soothing sounds of Tibetan singing bowls and crystal bowl therapy. Dress comfortably and bring your own mat. Explore the Dream Market showcasing local artisans and emerging Chicago brands!

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