On Monday, an Eau Claire tradition returns to celebrate freedom.
The Juneteenth Celebration will take place Monday evening at 5:30 p.m. in Carson Park under the Pine Pavilion.This marks the 18th year for the event in Eau Claire.
The celebration is in honor of the ending of the Civil War and the emancipation of the last slaves in Texas by the U.S. Army. On June 19, 1865, two years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation,Union soldiers brought news to Galveston,Texas that war had ended.
Juneteenth is now celebrated throughout the world honoring African- Americans, and appreciating the circumstances they have overcome. Monday's event aims to bring together the entire community to celebrate a city and country strengthened through diversity.
“If they had never freed the slaves, we would be a country that would be wracked by war and wracked by terror and we are, for the most part, a peaceful country," Dr. Salika Ducksworth – Lawton, a History Professor at UW-Eau Claire, told News 18. "We would not be as powerful as we are. We would not be a “super power”. We would not be capable of being a “super power.""
Organizers said they work very hard to stay true to the way Juneteenth was originally celebrated.They said the focus is on coming together to build community.