Berkeley’s annual Juneteenth celebration took place on Sunday in the five-block Alcatraz-Adeline corridor. Communities nationwide have adopted Juneteenth as an occasion to celebrate African American culture and traditions, and as an opportunity to acknowledge contributions African Americans have made to the fabric of America.
The day commemorates June 19th, 1865 when news reached Galveston, Texas of the signing by President Lincoln of the Emancipation Proclamation which freed slaves from southern states in rebellion against the United States during the Civil War. On that day, “slaves flooded the streets, rejoicing in their newly discovered freedom. The sweet smell of barbecue smoke filled the air! Dancing feet pounded the ground and voices sung out”.
Sunday’s Berkeley celebrations included also music, dancing and food, local vendor stalls, as well as outsize slides and skip rope competitions for the many children and kids at heart who attended.
Nancy Rubin was there to document the event with her wonderful photographs.