Drummers will provide a backdrop for a sunrise photo service to begin Juneteenth, A Day of Remembrance, June 19 in Port Arthur. Gail Pellum invites attendees to come dressed in white, to “remember those who have passed.” It’s a family day. A community day,” Pellum, Juneteenth organizer, said. The African American Cultural Society will present events all day on June 19. The 19th of June, 1865, is when the enslaved of Texas learned the Emancipation Proclamation had been signed long ago, on Jan. 1, 1863. General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston to read the Emancipation (Transfer of Property) Proclamation, Pellum said. The people had not learned they were supposed to be freed. Texans have historically observed this date and those who died in defense of family and freedom.
Port Arthur activities include
• 5:30 a.m. – Ms. Gail’s Dredheads – Sunrise photo shoot on the boardwalk, 300 Lakeshore Drive, behind the Jefferson County Subcourthouse. Drummers will perform as attendees watch for the sun and capture the rising with cameras.
• 11:30 a.m. – Flag raising ceremony at Jefferson County Subcourthouse.
• 3 p.m. – My Sisters’ Keeper Pop-Up Shop. Women entrepreneurs will display and sell their works at Barbara Jacket Park, Stilwell and Procter Streets.
• 5 p.m. – Parade line up, Stillwell and Procter Streets.
• 6 p.m. – Marcus Garvey Juneteenth Torchlight Parade to Barbara Jacket Park, Stilwell and Procter Streets.
• 7 p.m. – Activities at park to include entertainment and Pop-Up vendors. Pellum says Juneteenth events are designed to promote unity. Call her at 409-332-1709 for information, or call Naomi Bailey at 409-983-6808.