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June Proclaimed as Juneteenth Month in Hays County

Hays County Commissioners voted unanimously to proclaim June as Juneteenth month in Hays County. The proclamation was approved at the June 2 meeting. Speakers David Peterson, Chair of the Juneteenth Foundation, Inc. and a Hays County Constable, and Pastor Jonafa Banbury, Secretary of the Dunbar Heritage Association, provided the Court with information about Juneteenth and its significance. They also described the ways in which their respective organizations plan to celebrate this year amid the COVID-19 situation.

The Dunbar Heritage Association is hosting two virtual events:

  • Dunbar Virtual Juneteenth 5K Run, June 19 from 7 a.m. to Noon
  • Virtual Juneteenth Celebration via Facebook Live, June 19 from 3 to 7 p.m.

Organizers of the 5K Run ask participants to register then run or walk the distance (3.1 miles/5K) to observe the day that commemorates the end of slavery in the United States. Anyone running outside should practice social distancing and observe the rules set forth for physical distancing in public parks and trails by the respective county or municipality along with following CDC guidelines (https://www.sanmarcostx.gov/3090/Physical-Distancing-in-Public-Parks-and-). Participants may complete the run in a neighborhood, around an open track, on a trail, or on a treadmill.

The virtual celebration, which takes place from 3 to 7 p.m. June 19, includes singing, praising, dancing, and ‘queing it up as participants reflect on Juneteenth.

Schedule of Virtual Events · Friday, June 19, 2020

3:00 PM to 3:15 PM
Talk: What is Juneteenth & Why It’s Important in 2020

3:15 PM to 3:45 PM
Negro Spiritual: The Language of Our Ancestors with vocalist Joshua Banbury

3:45 PM to 4:00 PM
A & B Selection with soloist Pamela Mitchell Watson

4:00 PM to 4:30 PM
Giving God the Praise: Gospel Choir led by Minister Wayne Thompson

4:30 PM to 4:35 PM
Dance by Xavier

4:35 PM to 5:00 PM
Talking Freedom: Spoken Word/Poetry Birdie Deshay Jefferson & Marvin Merriweather

5:00 PM to 5:30 PM
Get up & Get Movin’; Virtual Line Dance led by Lee Merriweather

5:30 PM to 6:00 PM
This is How WE Do It: BBQ Demonstration!!!

6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Old School Throwback Jams DJ Hour

Information for both events, along with the rule for the 5Ks, can be found on the Dunbar Heritage Association Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pg/dunbarheritage/events/?ref=page_internal

The Juneteenth Foundation, Inc. (JFI), is hosting the 2020 Juneteenth Charitable Fundraising Campaign. Organizers are asking for community participation by donating funds to JFI, which will go towards support of those in need throughout the Hays County community. 

Community members can participate in the following ways:

Sponsors: make a monetary donation.

BBQ Teams: donate the fees usually spend to participate in the cook-off; alternately, host a mini BBQ cook-off to raise funds; or sell BBQ plates and donate all or a portion of the money to JFI.

Juneteenth Volunteers: find a way to donate your time, talent, and treasures to assist anyway you can; maybe have an art contest; or make a YouTube video about Juneteenth – the more creative, the better.

The JFI requests community members who participate in any way to take pictures and email them to juneteenth.cookoff@gmail.com. Photos will be posted on the Juneteenth webpage.

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Hays County