Hamilton won’t have Juneteenth celebration this year

The 2024 Hamilton Juneteenth Celebration is canceled for this year, and while organizers said it’s unfortunate, it’ll be back for 2025.

Juneteenth has been celebrated in the City of Sculpture for the past three years, and co-organizer Candice White said it “has been phenomenal.”

“The event has been greatly received by the city of Hamilton, and from people around the tri-state area,” she said. “However, this year’s event planning experienced some unforeseen complications that brought the committee to the challenging decision to suspend the celebration for 2024.”

Juneteenth, a portmanteau of the words June and Ninetheenth, is the celebration of the end of salvery in the United States. Though early celebrations date back to June 19, 1866 ― the year after the end of slavery when the Emancipation Proclamation was enforced in Texas ― Juneteenth became a recognized federal holiday in 2021. Hamilton City Council proclaimed in July 2020 that every June 19 in the city will be celebrated as Juneteenth in perpetuity.

Senate Assistant Minority Leader Hearcel Craig, D-Columbus, hosted last week a Juneteenth Celebration at the Ohio Statehouse to commemorate June as the beginning of the Month of Freedom.

”Juneteenth is not just a celebration of freedom,” the Ohio senator said. “It is also a reminder of the resilience, strength, and unwavering spirit of African Americans who endured and overcame the brutalities of slavery.”

When Juneteenth became a legal holiday, Craig said the country has “affirmed our dedication to inclusivity, diversity, and the acknowledgment of the significant contributions African Americans have made and continue to make to our society.”

Ohio, which declared Juneteenth as a paid state holiday, is one of at least 28 states (as well as Washington, D.C.) that legally recognizes Juneteenth as a public holiday.

Middletown got the Juneteenth party started early, as community held its celebration this past weekend. But coming up, there will be celebrations around Greater Cincinnati this week, with festivities that started Sunday and goes until June 17.

For more information on future events hosted by the Hamilton Juneteenth Committee, follow the organization on Facebook at Hamilton Juneteenth Celebration.

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