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Juneteenth 2020 Virtual Celebration

Jun 16, 2020

This unique virtual event is an opportunity for everyone in the Reading community and beyond to come together to celebrate an American holiday that commemorates the June 19, 1865 announcement of the abolition of slavery in the U.S. state of Texas and more generally the emancipation of the African American slaves throughout the former Confederacy of the southern United States. The name is a portmanteau of ‘June’ and ‘Nineteenth’. Juneteenth is recognized as a state holiday or special day of observance in forty six states now that Pennsylvania has signed the legislation to officially observe the holiday just last year! Please plan to join the celebration for a time of inspiration, education, acknowledgement, information, and an important call to action.

The event will be conducted Virtually this year through Zoom platform to be streamed live on the Juneteenth Reading PA Facebook page and rebroadcast on YouTube.

DATES: Friday, June 19th @ 6pm – Facebook Live Stream/Zoom AND Saturday, June 20th @ 8pm – Facebook Rebroadcast/Watch Party and YouTube premier. The event will also be aired on BCTV and streamed live at for both dates/times.

HOSTS : Elta Jackson-Henry, Reading Branch NAACP Religious Affairs Committee Leader with support of Stacey Taylor Reading NAACP President and 2020 Juneteenth Committee Members

ALL ARE INVITED: The entire community is invited to this Virtual Event through the Zoom platform to be streamed live on Facebook. Registration for Zoom is forthcoming and will be posted in Event prior to the date. Registration is optional and not required to view the event on Facebook. The event will be rebroadcast the following night as a Facebook Watch Party and also on YouTube

• Juneteenth is a portmanteau of the words June and Nineteenth. As this was the date in 1865 when African American slaves in Galveston, TX were given the news that they were free! 2 1/2 years after the Emancipation Proclamation signed in 1863.
• African American Communities and those in the African Diaspora around the world celebrate Juneteenth aka National Freedom day as a reminder of Liberation from oppression and racial injustice.
• Just as the slaves celebrated when they got the good news of their freedom, today we engage in joyous singing, share inspirational messages of motivation and spiritual uplift while honoring our elders, youth’s education achievements as well as calls to action for self-assessment, discussion and improvements to make our community and society as a whole a more positive and equitable place to live.
• Through this event we encourage everyone to join hands (safely) to truthfully acknowledge a period in our history that shaped and continues to influence our society today. If we are sensitized to the conditions and experiences of others, only then can we make significant and lasting change for the better in our society.

Subject to slight changes in order and participants:

·        Welcome & Thanks – Elta Jackson-Henry & Stacey Taylor

·        Opening Prayer – Rev. Jerry Jones, St. Johns Baptist Church

·        Interview with Wynton Butler II – Black Owned Business List

·        Keynote Address by Dr. Khalid Mumin, Superintendent of Reading School District

·        Guitar Solo – Chris Milanek

·        Stacey Taylor ~ Thanks

·        Aeolions of Oakwood University “Lift Every Voice and Sing”

·        Commendation from Mayor Eddie Moran/City Council by Marcia Goodman-Hinnershitz

·        Update on CPAM: (Central PA African American Museum) by Dr. Brenda Ingram Wallace

·        Musical Selections & Poetry – God’s Grace, Blessed By Faith, Maricelys Ruiz, Cheryl Meshak, Pine Forge, Harmonaires, Agape Christian Fellowship & more!

·        Personal Thoughts about Juneteenth from Elders, Children/Youth & Leaders in Community

·        Black History Medley by Resound:  Acapella group of Richmond, VA – currently in competition on AGT (America’s Got Talent)!

·        Community Call to Action by Mr. Endaisha Thornton

·        Negro Spirituals & Folk Song Musical Selections

·        Address by Representative Sue Helm (R)

·        Address by Senator Judy Schwank (D)

·        Closing Remarks & Prayer Dr. Bruce Alick, Zion Baptist Church

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