Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

Tarrant County's Juneteenth resolution lies on a table during the 5th Annual Arlington Juneteenth Celebration on June 16 at Globe Life Field in Arlington. President Joe Biden signed a law making Juneteenth a federal holiday June 17. 

With Juneteenth coming up, Arlington has hosted two events in honor of the new national holiday.

The holiday celebrates African American heritage and signifies the fulfillment of the Emancipation Proclamation.

The first event was the 5th Annual Arlington Juneteenth Celebration which occurred on June 16 at Globe Life Field in Arlington. The event was co-hosted by the Texas Rangers Baseball Club and the Arlington Black Chamber of Commerce. The celebration's main speakers included Theron Bowman, CEO of The Bowman Group; Rev. Michael Evans, Mayor of Mansfield; and Rob Matwick, executive vice president of Business Services for the Texas Rangers Baseball Club. A variety of people attended, including Arlington Mayor Jim Ross and UTA Interim President Teik Lim. Over 300 people attended the event, which lasted three hours.

UTA's Juneteenth Festival was the other event in Arlington this week, featuring Pamela Hill, adjunct professor of African American studies, as the speaker. Students and staff gathered to celebrate Juneteenth at Brazos Park on June 17. This festival included a variety of local artists and dancers who performed, along with free food. 

 

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

Attendees gather in a dining room for the 5th Annual Arlington Juneteenth Celebration on June 16 at Globe Life Field in Arlington. Over 350 pre-paid guests attended the event. 

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

Michael Evans, Bethlehem Baptist Church pastor, delivers the keynote speech during the 5th Annual Arlington Juneteenth Celebration on June 16 at Globe Life Field in Arlington. In December 2020, Evans became the first Black mayor elected in Mansfield, Texas.

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

Saxophonist Jeff Aycock performs at the 5th Annual Arlington Juneteenth Celebration on June 16 at Globe Life Field in Arlington. Juneteenth originated in Galveston, Texas. 

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

Arlington Mayor Jim Ross delivers a speech during the 5th Annual Arlington Juneteenth Celebration on June 16 at Globe Life Field in Arlington. This event was co-hosted by the Texas Rangers Baseball Club and the Arlington Black Chamber of Commerce. 

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

Bryan Samuel, vice president for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, stands and waves during the 5th Annual Arlington Juneteenth Celebration on June 16 at Globe Life Field in Arlington. The University of Texas at Arlington was recognized as a sponsor for the Black Chamber of Commerce at the event.

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

The crowd stands for the Black national anthem during UTA's Juneteenth Festival on June 17 at Brazos Park. "Lift Every Voice and Sing" is known as the Black national anthem. 

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

Graduation team member Phyllis Bazile receives a hug during UTA's Juneteenth Festival on June 17 at Brazos Park. Bazile said she enjoyed the event because it was informational. 

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

Pamela Hill, adjunct professor of African American studies and featured speaker, displays a chain during UTA's Juneteenth Festival on June 17 at Brazos Park. Hill has been teaching at UTA for eight years and said she strives to give students their voice. 

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

Percussionists James Hunter and Xavier Olubayo perform during UTA's Juneteenth Festival on June 17 at Brazos Park. They performed traditional music during the event. 

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

Attendees celebrate during UTA's Juneteenth Festival on June 17 at Brazos Park. The crowd took part in dancing to the traditional songs that were played by percussionists. 

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

Dallas resident James Hunter pours water out of a bottle as part of a demonstration during UTA's Juneteenth Festival on June 17 at Brazos Park. Hunter was also part of the percussion team during the event. 

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

Talent search advisor Randolph Holly helps serve food during UTA's Juneteenth Festival on June 17 at Brazos Park. Holly said Juneteenth is a special day where he can celebrate his heritage and culture with others. 

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

Event organizers hand out food to attendees during UTA's Juneteenth Festival on June 17 at Brazos Park. The event provided free barbecue to everyone who attended.

Arlington, UTA celebrate Juneteenth as it becomes a national holiday

A crowd dances during UTA's Juneteenth Festival on June 17 at Brazos Park. The event included a DJ, entertainment, prizes and food. 

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