Thousands turned on Saturday for the 12th Annual Juneteenth Celebration sponsored by the city of Daytona Beach.
The scent of barbecue ribs filled the air. Children ran around unattended – having a good time riding live animals, climbing rock walls, bouncing on inflatables and on a bungee ride.
Admission was free to the festival at Cypress Street Park. Attendees also took time to swim in the city’s pool and tour the new Midtown Cultural and Development Center. Also mixed in the crowd were candidates hoping to be elected in the upcoming Aug. 14 primary. Many groups also took the time to register people to vote.
On June 19, 1865, Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, and announced the end of the Civil War. This was two and a half years after slaves had been freed by the Emancipation Proclamation, which was signed by President Abraham Lincoln on Sept. 22, 1862.
Daytona Beach is one of many communities across the country that celebrates Juneteenth, which marks the time Texas slaves learned they were free.
In Palm Coast a Juneteenth celebration “Remembrance, Reflection and Recitation” will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. June 30 at the African American Cultural Center, 4422 N. U.S. 1. Admission is free and open to the public. For more information, call the African American Cultural Society at 386-447-7030.
The event will include arts and crafts vendors, food vendors, entertainment, face painting and a program from noon to 4 p.m.