Picnics, music, and stories highlight the day

WISCASSET – Wiscasset residents will be commemorating their first Juneteenth on Wiscasset’s Common, Sunday, June 19 from 1 to 3 p.m with an informal BYO picnic, music, and storytelling. In the tradition of Juneteenth celebrations around the country, it’s a day of sharing stories and food, embracing loved ones, and never forgetting that the price of freedom is high and dear.

Juneteenth began in 1866, a year after federal troops marched into Galveston, Texas, announcing that all enslaved people were free. This was more than two years after Abraham Lincoln had signed the Emancipation Proclamation, which declared that slaves in Confederate states would be free. The day became a “Jubilee Day” of celebration by newly freed African Americans in Texas and, with migration, was quickly embraced in other states.

Juneteenth is now celebrated throughout the U.S. with family gatherings, prayer, music, and remembrance of the hard fought struggle for emancipation. In Maine, Juneteenth became an official state holiday in 2021, the same year the U.S. designated the day, June 19, a federal holiday. Both holidays are being celebrated in 2022 for the first time.

Everyone is welcome to come to the Common and celebrate our shared humanity together. Wiscasset Juneteenth attendees are encouraged to bring stories about heritage, pivotal moments, personal history, lost loved ones, new births, and whatever makes your heart full and for which you are grateful.

For more information, call 617-974-7720 or email to ludroby@verizon.net.