Council Member Betsy Wilkerson Along With Community Partners Join To Celebrate Juneteenth 2021

Lisa Gardner, City Council Communications Director, 509.625.6226

Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 7:02 p.m.

Council Member Betsy Wilkerson has collaborated with the Inland Northwest Juneteenth Coalition (INJC) in celebration of Juneteenth 2021. Other collaborators include The Carl Maxey Center, Spokane NAACP, The MLK Family Outreach Center, S.C.A.R, and Spokane Ministerial Fellowship.  This year’s celebration marks the 10-year anniversary of INJC’s activation of Juneteenth in Spokane. 

“Juneteenth is considered Liberation Day in the African American community, celebrating our ancestor’s freedom,” says Councilwoman Wilkerson.  “I am delighted to be partnering with strong and prominent organizations here in Spokane to celebrate not only Juneteenth but also the passing of House Bill 1061 that made Juneteenth a recognized holiday in Washington state. What better time than now to highlight cultural celebrations in our city and in our beloved East Central neighborhood.  I hope everyone will come out to help us celebrate, learn about the East 5th Avenue Initiative, and take advantage of the resources and fun we will have for the entire community.”

There will be several community events over the weekend to celebrate Juneteenth that includes:

Event: Movie in the Park featuring “Black Panther”

Date: Friday, June 18th

Time: 8:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Location: Underhill Park

            2910 E. Hartson Ave

Event: Juneteenth Celebration & Vaccination Clinic

Date: Saturday, June 19th

Time: 11:00 am – 3:00 pm (resource fair) 2:00 pm—6:00 pm (music and entertainment)

Location: MLK Family Outreach Center at East Central Community Center

            500 S. Stone St.

Event: Praise in the Park and Community Book Drive

Date: Sunday, June 20th

Time: 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Location: Liberty Park

            502 S. Pittsburg Street

Event: Father’s Day Drive up Brunch

Date: Sunday, June 20th

Time: 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm

Location: Emmanuel Life Center

            631 S. Richard Allen Court

Juneteenth Celebration is made possible by the support from local businesses and organizations such as The City of Spokane, Better Health Together, CHAS, Providence, Spokane Regional Health District, Numerica Credit Union, Gesa Credit Union, SelKirk Development, KYRS, Spark Central, Stone Properties Group, Spokane Pride, Comcast, Planned Parenthood, Spokane Arts, Platform Partners Real Estate, Terrain, The Black Lens, Hooptown USA, and a number of other community supporters. 

Juneteenth is a holiday celebrating the emancipation of black slavery in the United States.  While the Emancipation Proclamation was signed in 1863, it was June 19th, 1865 when it was announced to the last slaves in Galveston Texas that slavery had ended.  156 years later, on April 9th, 2021 The Washington state Legislature passed a measure that makes Juneteenth a legal state holiday. House Bill 1016 making June 19 a state-paid holiday passed the Democratic-led Senate on a bipartisan 47-1 vote. 

For more information about the East 5th Initiative and Juneteenth tune into the latest Council Connection.