11aThere will be no shortage of events to attend and things to do for Juneteenth this year, especially in Fayetteville. Book Black Women, No Longer Bound Entertainment, LLC, and Circa 1865 Inc. present a 3- part celebration of Black culture here in America. Honoring the Past, Celebrating the Present, and Stepping into the Future. The celebration is a collaboration of 3 organizations run by boldly talented Black women determined to make a difference in their community. Book Black Women was founded by the extraordinarily talented and multifaceted Ayana Washington. Cerenia Johnson is the mastermind behind No Longer Bound Entertainment, LLC, and the brilliant Spring Lake Mayor, Kia Anthony, is the woman behind Circa 1865 Inc.

June 19 400 Years: The Evolution of Black America
The Juneteenth Celebration will kick off with the production of 400 Years: The Evolution of Black America. Showtime is 7:30 p.m. at Seabrook Stadium located on the campus of Fayetteville State University. Tickets are $20 for general admission and $35 for VIP, which includes VIP parking, light refreshments, and a preshow Black History art show. The production took the stage for the first time last year and is back by popular demand to start the 3 part journey into Black culture in America.

June 22 Freedom Block Party
No celebration of Black culture is complete without a block party. The epitome of summer activities in the Black community, this event will feature family fun for everyone. The Block Party will give community members the opportunity to shop with Black-owned businesses and indulge in food from Black-owned food trucks. There will be live history presentations and no block party is complete without a DJ on the ones and twos to keep the crowd moving (make sure to brush up on your electric and cha-cha slide). Historic Maxwell Street will host this year’s party from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. While the event is FREE, there is a VIP ticket option for $35 that includes access to Kress Open Space, light refreshments, and bar access.
“I founded my company three years ago and I knew I wanted to curate a block party that first year. Nothing screams ‘Juneteenth’ like a block party full of your community. I love my culture and I love my community but I am a small business so I knew I needed to collaborate,” Washington remarked in excitement over the block party being successfully added to this year’s celebration.

June 23 The Juneteenth Heritage Brunch
Ending the 3-part celebration of culture is The Juneteenth Heritage Brunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The brunch will take place at Carvers Creek State Park located in Spring Lake, the burial site of those enslaved in the area. Senator Val Applewhite will be the keynote speaker and attendees will enjoy a meal powered by Er’body Eatz, a local Black-founded nonprofit focused on food sustainability in Cumberland County.
Tickets for all events can be purchased at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-juneteenth-celebration-tickets-883546329857?aff=oddtdtcreator
Juneteenth is important for the Black community. It ensures our area has celebrations that not only mark a time of freedom for Black Americans but act as beacons of light in the future we are creating in this world presently and sources of education for all.
“This event is powered by Circa 1865, Inc. Mayor Kia Anthony founded this non-profit organization specifically to spread information about Juneteenth. Before Juneteenth became a federal holiday, she made it a point to bring a Juneteenth Festival to Fayetteville and Spring Lake every year. We feel blessed to have her support and guidance,” Washington said of Anthony and her passion for projects such as this.
With so many choices, Washington wants community members to know “...support every Juneteenth event. Support 400 Years: The Evolution of Black America at Seabrook Auditorium, Support The Freedom Block Party on Maxwell St., Support The Heritage Brunch at Carver’s Creek State Park, Support the Juneteenth Jubilee at Festival Park, Support the Juneteenth Dance Party at Smith Recreation, Support Juneteenth and Coldrank at Seven Horseman Billiards, Support the Juneteenth Celebration 5k in Downtown Fayetteville, Support the Juneteenth Liberty and Legacy Celebration at Dirt Bag Ale…
"The point of the Juneteenth holiday is community collaboration, lineage education, and ancestral reverence. Honor our past, Celebrate our present, and Step into our future. To shift that focus is to miss the entire point. Remember, our ancestors told the story of Juneteenth over multiple days in multiple ways and their descendants continue that tradition.”
Events such as these wouldn’t be possible without sponsors and partnerships. The Juneteenth Celebration wouldn’t be possible without these amazing organizations.
Sponsors
The Capitol Encore Academy (providing rehearsal space)
The Core Academy (providing rehearsal space)
Kress OpenSpace (sponsoring The Freedom Block Party VIP Lounge)
Jerome The Insurance Guy (sponsoring The Freedom Block Party lights and sound)
Cape Fear Regional Theatre (sponsoring costumes for 400 Years: The Evolution of Black America)
Community Partners
The Group Theory, Inc.
Black Artist Forward
The Crown Complex

“Shoutout to every human helping us on this endeavor! It is a massive undertaking and we’re beyond grateful for the support!” said Ayana Washington.

(Graphic courtesy of Book Black Women.)

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