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Juneteenth festival planned for Jeffersonville next month

The entrance the Depot in Jeffersonville.
Aprile Rickert
A Jeffersonville resident is organizing a three-day Juneteenth festival.

A Southern Indiana resident and business owner is partnering with community members and agencies to plan a three-day Juneteenth festival in Jeffersonville next month.

Juneteenth commemorates the day in 1865 when many of the last enslaved African American learned that they had been freed under the previously enacted Emancipation Proclamation.

Miguel Hampton, owner at F5 Enterprises LLC, wants to bring the community together to share in that celebration next month. He also hopes it’s a space to help educate on what freedom really means, the challenges that still exist in Black and Brown communities and the historical contributions of local Black residents.

“This is for us a first step,” he said. “We should be celebrating Juneteenth and African American history every day like we celebrate and teach all history.”

The festival kicks off June 15 with a panel discussion luncheon on economic health and wellness at Community Action of Southern Indiana. The discussion is part of a series of talks centered around resource accessibility, equality and equity through a partnership between F5 Enterprises and New Hope Services, Inc.

The celebration continues into June 16 and June 17 with an art show featuring Black, Indigenous and other artists of color, food trucks and vendors, games, music and a pop-up museum showcasing the accomplishments of local Black residents.

“Part of us having a Juneteenth Celebration in Jeffersonville, [in] Southern Indiana of this magnitude is really about educating us as a people — where we come from, what has happened in our country,” Hampton said.

“The other part is to encourage Black families as well as white families to really learn our history and to talk about it. Let's experience this culture together.”

He said it’s also important to understand what freedom has meant to Black people in the United States.

“Juneteenth is an embodiment of really understanding African American history, American history, how we persevered against all odds, and in the face of adversity, how we still continue to show up [and] have hope that at some point in time that in this country, we will find both equality and equity,” Hampton said.

Art show participants have been selected and will be announced soon.

To become a sponsor or vendor, visit https://commonconvo.tv/juneteenth/ or email mhampton@f5enterprises.com.

Black and other vendors of color can get a discount on space rental.

All events are free, but registration is required for the panel discussion on June 15.

Coverage of Southern Indiana is funded, in part, by Samtec, Inc. and the Hazel & Walter T. Bales Foundation.

Aprile Rickert is LPM's Southern Indiana reporter. Email Aprile at arickert@lpm.org.

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