A Myriad Of Offerings Are Available To Celebrate Juneteenth In Central Indiana

Here are six events where you can commemorate this important holiday.
Three hand prints of Juneteenth Jubilee flyer

This article originally ran on June 16, 2021, originally written by Jalysa King.

Juneteenth is synonymous with freedom.  It became a federal holiday in 2021, and the name is a merging of “June” and “nineteenth.”  On that date in 1865, a message of liberation reached Galveston, Texas. Thousands of black people found out slavery had ended, and they were free.

Black Americans in Texas and other states designated by the U.S. Census Bureau as the South have been celebrating Juneteenth for 150 years; however, in the last decade celebrations have expanded throughout the United States, including right here in the Midwest.  Here are six Juneteenth-related events in Central Indiana, most with free admission, where you can experience a variety of music, activities and food.

A flyer with hand sprinkling salt
Photo Courtesy of the Juneteenth Foodways Festival

June 16

4:30 p.m.-8:00 p.m.

Benjamin Harrison Presidential site

This is the second year for the festival, and it will feature more than 20 local food vendors offering everything from vegan dishes to soul food. Also, the story of Dolly Johnson, the first black chef/caterer to work in the White House, will be re-enacted by Freetown Village Inc.


Flyer with green font for the book fest
Photo Courtesy of the Center of Black Literature and Culture

June 17

11:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.

Central Library

There will be authors, artists and musicians who will focus on cultural literacy.  Also, there will be a presentation on the history of Juneteenth. In addition, activities for kids and teens will be available in the Learning Curve, which is a tech-focused area in the library with interactive elements.

Flyer of Green, yellow, and red
Photo Courtesy of the Eiteljorg Museum

June 17

11:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.

Eiteljorg Museum

Performances featuring music and poetry will be a major part of this outdoor event.

Block party flyer
Photo courtesy Legacy Fest

June 17-18

12:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m.

617 Indiana Avenue

There will be live music, food trucks and cultural tours with guide Sampson Livingston. All ages will find something to enjoy at this outdoor event.




Three hand prints of Juneteenth Jubilee flyer
Photo Courtesy of the Fourth Annual Juneteenth Jubilee

June 19

5:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.

Conner Prairie

Black-owned businesses will be part of this free community celebration. There will be live music provided by DJ D Nyce, plus a kid zone with face painting and bounce houses. Also, Conner Prairie balloon rides are available for a fee.

Four headshots on flyer
Photo courtesy of state of the culture

June 19

5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

COhatch Broad Ripple

There will be a  cocktail hour and small plates, followed by a panel discussion about the significance of Juneteenth. Panelists are Britt S. Griffin, Kelli N. Jones, Joseph Pinnell and Misty Resendez, Ph.D.

Diane Moore is a freelance writer and frequent contributor to Indy Maven. You can follow her on Instagram @whatdianeloves.

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