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Juneteenth in Oklahoma: how to celebrate throughout the state

There are many ways for Oklahomans to celebrate Juneteenth this weekend, including a celebration in east Oklahoma City.

Juneteenth on the East returns this weekend. The festival is a three-day-long celebration that kicks off with a 5k run and ends with brunch. In between, there will be music, including headliner MYA, as well as a car show, art, dancing, face-painting, and more.


OKC rapper Jabee is one of the organizers of the festival. He describes the origin of the holiday.

“Juneteenth is the celebration of the liberation Black people in America. It was the day where a general arrived in Galveston years after slaves were already free, but there were people still holding slaves in the Southern U.S.,” said Jabee.

When the general told the slaves they were free, a celebration broke out. The following year, official celebrations were held across Texas to commemorate the day. And last year, Juneteenth became a federal holiday.

Jabee believes the holiday is for everyone.

“For me, Juneteenth is just as important as the Fourth of July or any American holiday that we celebrate our independence from anybody,” said Jabee. “I think that it's definitely not just my holiday or my community's holiday or my people's holiday. It should be looked at as a holiday for the entire nation anytime that Americans are able to be free. That's something that we should celebrate.”

There are plenty of ways to celebrate this weekend. Check out our list below:

Thursday, June 16

Friday, June 17

Saturday, June 18

Sunday, June 19

Monday, June 20

Editor's Note: Jabee is the co-host of Grand Union Radio on The Spy on KOSU

Brooklynn LiCastro was a student intern at KOSU.
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