19 Ways You Can Honor & Celebrate Juneteenth
1. Educate yourself
If you're unaware of the history behind this important holiday, now is a great time to start educating yourself! Juneteenth is one of America's oldest holidays, dating back to June 19th, 1865, marking the official end of slavery in the US. Continue learning the full history at Juneteenth.com.
2. Support Black businesses
One simple way you can honor the holiday is through monetary support of Black Businesses. For a searchable directory of Black-Owned businesses click here. We also love this user-friendly list Forbes put together of 75 Black-owned businesses to support today. Another great resource is FiveFifths, the largest list of black-owned restaurants and online businesses on the internet.
3. Watch "13th"
The tagline for this documentary says it all: “From slave to criminal with one amendment.” 13th delves into the history of the 13th amendment and explores America’s journey from slavery to mass incarceration. An eye-opening must-watch for all those who haven't seen it. Click here to watch on Netflix or here to watch for free on Youtube.
4. Plan a meal to gather loved ones in discussion
Juneteenth.com suggests planning a special meal and gather the family together to acknowledge Juneteenth. Decorate your table and door with a Juneteenth theme and discuss what the celebration means today. Emphasize the mandates of responsibility and striving to be the best you can be. Make specific pledges for the remainder of the year and ask for support in accomplishing your goals.
5. Plan a get together with friends to share information
Get together with your friends and have a special gathering dedicated to learning and sharing ideas about Juneteenth. Come with facts and information, quotes from history, or other thoughts to spark conversation about the significance of this day and what it means to you.
6. Celebrate in the workplace
If your workplace does not take Juneteenth off, make sure you do something to acknowledge the holiday with your office! Decorate a conference room, lobby or workspace with a Juneteenth theme to acknowledge the day's celebration. Bring the group together for refreshments and an explanation of Juneteenth.
7. Place Juneteenth signs around your neighborhood
8. Celebrate through food
For the last 150 years, food has been an essential part of celebrating Juneteenth. Some food celebrations include the tradition of eating and drinking red foods and drinks, symbolizing the blood and resilience of the former enslaved. Other people celebrate with a delicious meal of traditional Black Southern cuisine, with foods like fried chicken, cornbread, and collard greens. Click here to learn more about "food as a form of celebration" for Juneteenth.
9. Donate to Black charities and organizations
Honor Juneteenth through a monetary donation to any Black organization of your choosing. Not sure where to donate? Click here for a list of Black charitable organizations that are accepting donations.
10. Sign petitions
Signing petitions are a great way anyone can honor Juneteenth and show their support for Black lives matter. For a list of petitions to sign click here. For more petitions to sign on Change.org, click here.
11. Read these articles
12. Read these books
13. Watch Black films
Movies like Fruitvale Station, The Hate U Give, and Just Mercy, are just a few examples of films that highlight racial injustices and can be very eye-opening and educational for viewers. For more movies you can watch in honor of Juneteenth, click here.
14. Check out these podcasts
This podcast dives into the brutality and history of slavery in the US. We love this podcast with Jasmine Bradshaw that goes into an in-depth history about the holiday, and ways you can celebrate with your family. This podcast discusses how slavery still exists today, how to talk to your kids about Juneteenth, and the resiliency of Black folks.
15. Attend a local Juneteenth celebration
A simple Google search of "Juneteenth celebrations near me" should show you any and all local Juneteenth celebrations you can attend to honor the holiday. You can also attend some of these events virtually, check out this list!
16. Teach your children
If you have kids, celebrate Juneteenth with them! Make a special day of it, and make sure to educate them about the history of the holiday, and the importance of why we celebrate. This podcast that was also mentioned above, goes into ways to approach these conversations and how to talk to your kids about the history of Juneteenth. Go beyond just Juneteenth and continue teaching your kids about racism and equality every day. For a list of essential children's books about race, activism, and equality, click here.
17. Support a Black LGBTQ organization
Members of the Black LGBTQ community are among some of the most harshly oppressed individuals in our society. In honor of Juneteenth and Pride Month (which is all June), check out these Black LGBTQ organizations you can donate to and support.
If nothing else, one thing you can do to honor Juneteenth is to simply listen. Listen with open ears and an open mind to the words and experiences of those sharing important messages. We all have more to learn and room to grow!
Honor Juneteenth by reflecting on the history and importance of the holiday. It is so important that everyone take this day to really reflect on the past so that we can continue to learn from our mistakes and use them to work towards a better future.
How are you celebrating Juneteenth this year? Let us know!