Juneteenth 2021 in Seattle: A Guide to Local Events

by Emerald Staff

Emerald staff rounded up local Juneteenth events so you and yours can easily find ways to participate both in person and virtually in celebrations, storytimes, cooking classes, and so much more!

Check back to this post as we continue to add more events that we hear about!

Virtual Events

Silhouette of male-presenting youth reading a book against a sunset.
Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash.

NAAM’s Juneteenth Week — Interactive Storytime: ‘Lift Every Voice’ with Interactive Art Session 

Date: Sunday, June 13
Time: 1–2 p.m.
Cost: Free
Art Kit Pickup: June 12 11 a.m.–2 p.m.

“Tune in for a very special Juneteenth Week Interactive Storytime! 

“To kick off the NAAM’s Juneteenth Week, join NAAM, Seattle Sounders FC + Rave Foundation for a new, culturally relevant story read aloud. Former Seattle Sounders FC player & Broadcast Analyst Steve Zakuani will read Sing a Song: How Lift Every Voice and Sing Inspired Generations by Kelly Starling Lyons, followed by an interactive art session led by Teddy ‘Stat’ Phillips. 

“Art will be displayed online through the Seattle Sounders FC & Rave Foundation ‘Goals for Art’ program.

“Anyone who wants a free art kit can pick them up at NAAM on Saturday, June 12 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Artwork will be featured online in a Goals for Art gallery.”

For more information and to reserve an art kit, please visit the NAAM website.

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Left: Annette Gordon-Reed; Right: Marcus Harrison Green

The History and Future of Juneteenth: Annette Gordon-Reed with Marcus Harrison Green

Date: Monday, June 14
Time: 7:30–9 p.m.
Cost: $5

“In conversation with South Seattle Emerald’s Marcus Harrison Green, Annette Gordon-Reed weaves together American history, dramatic family chronicle, and searing episodes of memoir chronicled in her book On Juneteenth

“She recounts the origins of the date in Texas and the enormous hardships that African Americans have endured since and explains how, from the earliest presence of Black people in Texas, African Americans played an integral role in the state’s story. She demonstrates that the slave- and race-based economy not only defined the fractious era of Texas independence but indeed caused the Mexican American and Civil Wars. 

“Don’t miss this urgent program for an essential revision of conventional renderings of history, one that starkly reminds us that the fight for equality is demanding and ongoing.

“Presented by Town Hall Seattle and the Northwest African American Museum.”

For more information and to purchase tickets for this event, please visit the NAAM website.

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NAAM’s Juneteenth Week — Juneteenth: Lift Every Voice

Date: Tuesday, June 15
Time: 7–8:30 p.m.
Cost: Free

“This year, 10 leading Black museums and historical institutions from coast to coast will join forces for BLKFREEDOM.org to commemorate Juneteenth, the day that the Emancipation Proclamation was officially enforced, ending enslavement in Texas. 

“The annual collaboration has produced a film documenting the national exploration of the deep-rooted anthem “Lift Every Voice and Sing” through the eyes of historic museums and anthropologists from across the United States.”

For more information and to watch the event, please visit the NAAM website.

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Celebrating Juneteenth — Inclusivity in the Coffee Industry

Date: Wednesday, June 16
Time: 10–11 a.m.
Cost: Free

“On Juneteenth week, Seattle Good Business Network would like to invite you to join us and Edward McFields, owner of NoirePack Inc. and member of Seattle Good Business Network, as we discuss with Boon Boona‘s owner Efrem Fesaha and Campfire Coffee Co’s founder Quincy Henry about the barriers of entry for minorities in the coffee business, the ins and outs of operating a coffee enterprise, community service, and advice to BIPOC entrepreneurs looking to pursue a career in the coffee industry.

“Seattle is notably the epicenter for various specialty coffee roasters. A city recognized by its star lineup of specialty roasters, not to mention Seattle, is headquarters to Starbucks and Peet’s Coffee. Over the years, specialty coffee has become a significant part of Seattle’s identity, and the city has created its own coffee culture.

“However, the coffee community, though, reflects neither the diversity of the origins of coffee nor the pluralism of the city. This is not solely in Seattle, but it cascades to other major coffee cities in America. Nevertheless, there are hidden jewels in this coveted industry shifting the discourse surrounding this popular beverage. We’re excited to get to talk with two of these industry leaders!”

For more information and to register for Celebrating Juneteenth — Inclusivity in the Coffee Industry, please visit seattlegood.org.

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Photo of Carol Anderson, author of ‘The Second’

Carol Anderson, ‘The Second’ Book Event with Christopher Sebastian Parker

Date: Wednesday, June 16
Time: 5–6:30 p.m.
Cost: Zoom Admission $5, Zoom Admission + The Second $31

“Award-winning author and Emory University professor, historian Carol Anderson pays a welcome Seattle return, albeit in virtual form, for her timely new book, The Second: Race and Guns in a Fatally Unequal America (Bloomsbury USA). She is to be joined here in conversation with University of Washington political science professor and author Christopher Sebastian Parker.

“Presented by Elliott Bay Book Company and the Northwest African American Museum.”

For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit the NAAM website.

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ELEVATE (v.) Raise or Lift to a Higher Position

Date: Wednesday, June 16
Time: 6:30–7:30 p.m.
Cost: Free

ELEVATE is a showcase of Black and Brown voices uplifting one another through the art of spoken word. This project will share untold and unseen work centered around local and national historical events, the impact of systemic racism, and individuals challenging racist ideologies. Most importantly, ELEVATE is the celebration and empowerment of the people. This event is created for the community, by the community.

“Join us as this virtual evening of raw, bold, breathtaking performances from poets of all ages, presentations by a historian, and celebrations of unsung heroes who have paved the way will be followed by a community conversation. All are invited to witness the intricate and creative program for free on Wednesday, June 16, 2021, at 6:30 p.m. PT.

“Presented by Seattle Theater Group and Northwest African American Museum.”

For more information about ELEVATE, please visit the Seattle Theater Group online.

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Art by Yadesa Bojia

NAAM’s Juneteenth Week — 2021 Artist Collective

Date: Friday, June 18
Time: 7–8:30 p.m.
Cost: Free

“Juneteenth honors and celebrates the emancipation of the enslaved people in the United States. The Diversity, Equality, and Inclusivity Committee of the Space Needle & Chihuly Garden and Glass, alongside the Northwest African American Museum, One Vibe Africa, and Wa Na Wari, are celebrating this day by raising the voices of Black and African American artists in an Artist Collective broadcast premiering on Friday, June 18.

“As part of Northwest African American Museum’s Juneteenth week, the Space Needle & Chihuly Garden and Glass will introduce several amazing Black and African American artists to Seattle through a virtual show, hosted by Northwest African American Museum’s L. Patrice Bell.”

For more information about the 2021 Artist Collective, please visit spaceneedle.com.

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Photo of Donna Moodie, owner of Seattle restaurant Marjorie
Photo of Donna Moodie, owner of Seattle restaurant Marjorie

PCC’s Juneteenth Celebration with Donna Moodie

Date: Saturday, June 19
Time: 12–1 p.m.
Cost: $35

“Join Donna Moodie — owner of Seattle restaurant Marjorie — for a special Juneteenth-themed class with proceeds benefitting Byrd Barr Place. On this important day commemorating freedom, Donna will cook the dishes that she grew up with, including Jamaican Jerk Chicken (tofu option available) and Mashed Yams. She’ll also speak about the significance of having red on the table for Juneteenth as she shares her recipe for a ruby-hued Hibiscus Cooler.

“The complete menu:

  • Assorted Dips with Miss Marjorie’s Steel Drum Plantain Chips
  • Jamaican Jerk Chicken or Tofu
  • Mashed Yams
  • Sweet Potato Salad
  • Hibiscus Cooler

“Tickets are $35. This is a demonstration class offered live via Zoom. One spot in class is good for one kitchen. A recording will be sent after class. Class link and recipes will be sent four days before class.”

For more information and to purchase tickets for this class, please visit the PCC website.

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MOHAI’s Online 1619: Resistance / Resilience / Remembrance

Date: Saturday, June 19
Time: 2–3 p.m.
Cost: Free, $5 suggested ticket price

“Celebrate Juneteenth with a special storytelling hour featuring Mr. Delbert Richardson. During this hour, Mr. Richardson will highlight the resistance of his ancestors during the periods of American chattel slavery and Jim Crow as well as focus on the resilience of Black brilliance. This online program draws from sections of the national award-winning American History Traveling Museum: The Unspoken Truths, which will be on display at MOHAI from June 18 through June 21, 2021.

“Spots are limited so register early!

“Co-presented by MOHAI and the Black Heritage Society of Washington State. Generous program support provided by Amazon.”

For more information and to register for this event, please visit the MOHAI website.

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South Hudson Music Project’s Juneteenth Staycation Festival

Date: Saturday, June 19
Time: 5–6:30 p.m. PT, 7–8:30 p.m. PT
Cost: Free

“In celebration of the beginning of summer, the transition from pandemic closures to some new reality, and the commemoration of Juneteenth, South Hudson Music Project is co-presenting three hours of stellar jazz, all with deep roots in Seattle.

“All fans of jazz in Seattle know pianist Dawn Clement, who only recently moved to Denver for a teaching position. We sure miss her on the scene. Ryan Burns is everywhere these days and is a true Seattle treasure. Johnaye is one of a kind, beloved locally and internationally known.

“The livestream is free and we hope you will tune in. Come for ten minutes or the whole three hours!”

For more information about this musical livestream, please visit LoudSwell’s “Shows” webpage.

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NAAM’s Juneteenth Week — NAAM’s Juneteenth Encore + Black Music Month Monday Program

Date: Monday, June 21
Time: 6–8 p.m.
Cost: Free

“Join us Monday, June 21 for NAAM’s Juneteenth Encore + Black Music Month Monday Program!

“THE E RATIO: Entertainment vs Education

“Paul Porter is a captivating speaker, thought leader, and entertainment industry veteran who empowers students to shift their behavior patterns from consuming social media and entertainment to absorbing education.

“Author of the critically acclaimed book BlackOut, Paul Porter unveils the real nature and motivations behind the music that gets played on radio and TV. Porter shares his first-hand experiences with detailed insight as an insider and decision-maker at the highest levels of the industry. A thought leader in the radio and music industry, he is a go-to expert on music, race, and culture for major media outlets like CNN, MSNBC, Entertainment Tonight, FOX News, Billboard, and Rolling Stone.

“Presented in sponsorship with Wa Na Wari and Elliott Bay Books.”

For more information, please visit the NAAM website.

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In-Person Events

Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash.

NAAM’s Juneteenth Week — Youth Night

Date: Thursday, June 17
Time: Doors open at 7 p.m., Event begins at 8 p.m.
Location: 221 South King Street, Seattle, WA 98104
Cost: Free

“To celebrate 2021 graduates, NAAM will host Drive-In Black Graduation as part of Juneteenth Week 2021 Youth Night. This event will celebrate graduates from pre-K through college. Youth Night will also recognize the accomplishments of NAAM’s 2020 Dr. Carver Gayton Youth Curators for the amazing work that they completed in the midst of a pandemic.”

For more information and to submit a graduate to be recognized (due by June 10 at 11:59 PT) and to reserve your space at the drive-in, please visit the NAAM website.

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Photo of exterior of MOHAI building in Seattle.
Photo attributed to javacolleen (under a Creative Commons, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 license).

MOHAI’s The Unspoken Truths

Date: Friday, June 18
Time: 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Location: Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI), 860 Terry Ave North, Seattle, WA 98109
Cost: Adult $22, Senior $18, Student & Military $17, Youth (14 & Under) Free

“Mr. Delbert Richardson and his national award-winning American History Traveling Museum: The Unspoken Truths is coming to MOHAI for Juneteenth! With the use of authentic artifacts, storyboards, and the ancient art of storytelling, Mr. Richardson teaches American History through an Afrocentric lens. His exhibit is broken into four sections: Mother Africa, American Chattel Slavery, The Jim Crow Era, and Still We Rise. This installation is co-presented by MOHAI and the Black Heritage Society of Washington State. Generous support provided by Amazon.”

For more information and to purchase tickets for the exhibit, please visit the MOHAI website.

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PhotoWalkSeattle: ‘Close, Closer, Closest’ Exhibit Opening

Date: Saturday, June 19 through August 2021, 7 days a week
Time: Sunrise to Sunset
Location: Seattle Rep, 155 Mercer Street, Seattle, WA 98109
Cost: Free

“PhotoWalk is a grassroots nonprofit that brings the closed-door experience of museums to public streets and highlights the need to know stories that empower communities to make informed choices. Through exhibitions, workshops, photo nights, after-school programs, and experiments in storytelling, we champion the power of visual reporting, journalists, and truth. A curated photojournalism exhibit is presented with partners within our communites, who grant us permission to use donated wall space for large wheatpaste murals. 

“Born in New York City in 2015, PhotoWalk’s founder (Shaminder Dulai) moved to Seattle in 2019 and is bringing the experience to the Emerald City. Past events have focused on world news, youth perspective, race and equity, politics and power, and the human condition.

“This Juneteenth, PhotoWalk is launching an exhibit at the Seattle Rep entitled ‘Close, Closer, Closest.’ Through murals spread out across the Seattle Rep, photojournalists present a window into the ongoing struggle for civil rights and equity around the world, revealing a carefully curated selection of the ‘need to know’ stories affecting our communities. PhotoWalk is excited to invite you to hit the streets for an exhibition examining the power of visual reportage that deconstructs our present racial and cultural reckoning and aims to reveal how history repeats itself, by examining inequalities and the unfinished work of civil rights globally and the roots of the Black Lives Matter movement, while new to some, are not really new at all.”

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‘No Healing, No Peace!’ A Walking Meditation for Black Liberation

Date: Saturday, June 19
Time: 10 a.m.–1 p.m.
Location: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Park, 2200 MLK Jr. Way South, Seattle, WA

“Join Nile’s Edge Healing Arts on June 19, 2021 for a guided walking meditation in Dr. Martin Luther King Junior Memorial Park (2200 MLK Jr. Way S., Seattle, WA) from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. This meditation is to provide participants a moment of reflection, grounding, and spiritual awareness around Juneteenth and the resilience of Black people in America.

‘No Healing, No Peace’ will begin with an African centered libation ceremony by Orisade Awodola. The event will move forward with healing music and a guided meditation by Aishe` Keita, and a live soundscape by vocalist Porscha Shaw. The meditation will end in celebratory African drum and dance by Sumayya Diop and friends. All participants are encouraged to walk the curated path up to the top of the hill in the park, but there is a flat version available for those with mobile limitations as well. After participants finish the walking meditation they are allowed to sit on the sides and continue to meditate and listen to the music until the celebration at the end, or they can simply exit the park after the walk.”

For more information about the ‘No Healing, No Peace’ meditation walk, please visit the event webpage and check out their Facebook event page.

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Jackson’s Catfish Corner Grand Opening

Date: Saturday, June 19
Ribbon Cutting Time: 10 a.m.
Location: Jackson’s Catfish Corner, 2218 South Jackson Street, Seattle, WA 98144

“Come celebrate June 19 as Jackson’s Catfish Corner opens their doors to the new staple in the community! With live music, special guest appearances, and a merchandise giveaway!”

For more information about Jackson’s Catfish Corner’s Grand Opening, follow on Facebook and Instagram.

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Phenomenal She and Game of Life First Annual Juneteenth Celebration BBQ

Date: Saturday, June 19
Time: 10 a.m.–2 p.m.
Location: Town Square Park, 31600 Pete von Reichbauer Way South, Federal Way, WA 98003

“Come celebrate with your local community partners for a day of outdoor festivities, BBQ, mask decorating, 3-point shooting and dunk contest, and more! Can’t wait to see you there!

“If you’re interested in the 3-Point Shooting Contest or Dunk Contest, sign up through the following link.”

For more information, please visit phenomenalshe.org.

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ASC’s 20th Anniversary Juneteenth Celebration

Date: Saturday, June 19
Time: 11 a.m.–2 p.m.
Location: Rainier Beach Community Center, 8825 Rainier Ave South, Seattle, WA 98118

“Join Atlantic Street Center (ASC) and Rainier Beach Community Center for a COVID-safe celebration of freedom with food, live music, resource tables, speakers, and special Father’s Day crafting activities!”

For more information about ASC’s 20th Anniversary Juneteenth Celebration, please visit atlanticstreetcenter.org.

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It Takes a Village — Juneteenth Festival in Othello Park

Date: Saturday, June 19
Time: 11 a.m.–6 p.m.
Location: Othello Park, 4351 S Othello Street, Seattle, WA 98118 

“Juneteenth by It Takes a Village promotes community health and empowerment of those with the least power in our society and creates a unique, annual event space to celebrate Black people and learn about the Black experience while sharing in the diversity of culture that makes up our neighborhoods, connecting people to services and resources they need to live their best lives while enjoying a day spent in and with community, sharing food, ideas, goods, and more. 

“We do this by bringing people together in a safe and welcoming environment for all to enjoy the talents of local artists, craftspeople, and more, and by giving people opportunities to connect to local services relevant to their well-being like jobs, health care, and housing. We provide in-depth education on the history of Juneteenth, activities for children, and encourage all event attendees to share knowledge, perspective, and ideas and make valuable connections while enjoying this joyful and educational community event. 

“This year’s event will feature…  

“Food | Music/Entertainment | A History Lesson | Vendors | Community Services Booths (including, but not limited to):

  • COVID Vaccines
  • Health Insurance Enrollments
  • ORCA Lift (get signed up!)
  • Dental Services
  • Rising Sons (SPS program info)
  • Direct Hiring Booths (Safeway & Swedish Medical Center)
  • Health Screenings
  • Local Political Leaders

Plus talented performers like Logic Amen, Nikkita Oliver, Washington Diamonds Drill Team & Drumline, and many more! And local vendors like Mark Womack/Deff Jemz, Tracy with paparazzi “Chasin Gems,” Clarissa of “Sweet Scorpio Design” and lots more.

For more information about the It Takes a Village Juneteenth Festival, please visit the It Takes a Village — AMSA Facebook event page.

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KCEN #Juneteenth21 Freedom March & People’s Assembly

Date: Saturday, June 19, and Sunday, June 20
March Time: 12–3 p.m.
March Start Location: 23rd Avenue East and East Madison Street
March End Location: Jimi Hendrix Park, 2400 South Massachusetts Street, Seattle, WA 98144 

Celebration Time: 3 p.m.
Celebration Location: Jimi Hendrix Park, 2400 South Massachusetts Street, Seattle, WA 98144 

Come to the 2nd Annual #Juneteenth21 Freedom March and People’s Assembly!!! 

“Juneteenth is the celebration of Black resistance. We honor those who were enslaved and continue the work to freedom. 

“Come to this year’s Freedom March and People’s Assembly starting on 23rd Avenue East & East Madison Street and ending at Jimi Hendrix Park. Live performances by Sevyn Streeter, Gifted Gab, food by Communion, and many more Black vendors!

“Last year, we hosted the historic Juneteenth Freedom March and Celebration with over 35,000 supporters in attendance. Uplifting local history, the celebration started on 23rd Avenue and Madison Street to honor the late Decharlene Williams and her Central Area activism where, nearly 40 years ago, she established the Central Area Chamber of Commerce and brought Juneteenth to Seattle. Building on that strong legacy, this year’s will be larger, broader, and even more impactful!

“Celebrate Black resistance, Black joy, and the struggle for Black liberation.”

For more information about, to RSVP to, or to sign up as a vendor or sponsor for the March and People’s Assembly, please visit the following webpage and follow King County Equity Now’s Facebook event page.

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Juneteenth flag
Juneteenth flag (this version by Mike Tré), licensed by Creative Commons, Wikimedia Commons author: Saturnsorbit.

NAAM’s Juneteenth Week — Juneteenth Jamboree

Date: Saturday, June 19
Time: 12–6 p.m.
Location: Judkins Park, 2150 South Norman Street, Seattle, 98144

“The Northwest African American Museum and Rec’N The Streets (City of Seattle Parks & Rec) present the Juneteenth Jamboree! Full of family fun, recreation, and activity from local professional sports teams, this will be a Juneteenth that you won’t forget!

“NAAM’s Juneteenth Jamboree will feature:

  • Live Performances
  • Live Storytime
  • Youth Engagement with Seattle Sounders FC, Seattle Seahawks, Seattle Mariners, and Seattle Storm
  • COVID-19 Vaccinations and education from Seattle Fire Department
  • Blood pressure screenings, mental health tools, and COVID-19 vaccine education from OneMedical
  • Live demonstrations, education, and horseback rides from Seattle Buffalo Soldiers
  • Food, Music, and More!”

For more information, to RSVP, or to register as a vendor for the Juneteenth Jamboree, please visit the NAAM website.

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Blackout Healing Presents Juneteenth Yes Farm Kick Back

Date: Saturday, June 19
Time: 2:30–8 p.m.
Location: YES Farm – Black Farmer’s Collective, 715 Yesler Way, Seattle, WA 98104

“Blackout Healing is back to celebrate our day of liberation. Join us for a Juneteenth kick-back and healing ritual. There will be art, an opportunity to put your hands in the dirt and explore the farm, or just come with a blanket to sit and connect.

“Anyone who identifies as Black, living a Black experience is welcome.

“Please RSVP to Mary at mary@y-we.org if you would like dinner and to attend deep roots.”

For more information and a schedule of events, please visit the Blackout Healing website.

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Building Black Wealth Experience

Date: Saturday, June 19
Time: 3–6 p.m.
Location: The Collective Seattle, 400 Dexter Avenue North, Seattle, WA 98109
Cost: $10

“This unique, immersive experience will create an opportunity for people to celebrate and participate in this holiday. Over cocktails, delicious foods and networking, attendees will be exposed to relevant Black-owned businesses, entrepreneurs and the community programs currently serving them. All proceeds from the event will benefit Urban Impact.

“The event features the following:

  • Marketplace with innovative products from ten local Black-owned businesses.
  • Panel Discussion featuring community business leaders: Doug Baldwin (Entrepreneur & former Seattle Seahawk) Lewis Rudd (Ezells Chicken), and Keisha Credit (Entrepreneur recently featured in Forbes Magazine).
  • Food will be catered by Black-owned restaurant Communion.
  • Event Program centered on spotlighting the work that Urban Impact and Building Black Wealth are doing.
  • Live performance by Draze, performing new music from his soon-to-be-released album titled African American.

“In addition to the live in-person gathering, this Building Black Wealth Experience will be live-streamed by Converge Media as a virtual event, with the opportunity to donate to Urban Impact online.”

For more information and to purchase tickets for the Building Black Wealth Experience, please visit the following webpage.

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Juneteenth Outdoor Celebration at Wa Na Wari

Date: Saturday, June 19
Time: 6 p.m.
Location: Wa Na Wari, 911 24th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122

Celebrate Juneteenth with Wa Na Wari outdoors in their backyard with live music, featuring BluMeadows Trio!

The event is free, and drinks are available for purchase for 21+ from Erudite & Stone.

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📸 Featured Image: A young man carries a flag, as he marches, during the Juneteenth celebration at Jimi Hendrix Park in Seattle, Washington, on June 19, 2020. (Photo: Carolyn Bick)

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