How Can I Celebrate Juneteenth?

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We here at Showit celebrate Juneteenth as a company and as individuals. So, if you were wondering, “how can I celebrate Juneteenth?” we are here to help!

Why should we celebrate?

We celebrate Juneteenth at Showit because it signifies a day this country moved closer to one of its most important aspirations: unity.

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Of the many goals we have as a people, both in this company and as a country, a major one—and arguably the most important one—has always been to be united. So much so, the country was named after it (we also named a conference after it), and a pledge was written to reinforce it. You know how it goes, “…one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” It’s beautiful, and a goal the country is still aspiring to.

What are we celebrating on Juneteenth?

On January 1, 1863, then-president Abraham Lincoln signed into law the Emancipation Proclamation that pronounced “all persons held as slaves…are, and henceforward shall be free.” There were many who enjoyed its effect almost immediately and felt a new sense of life. They celebrated newfound freedom and were overjoyed to pursue happiness, love, and recreation in a way they never had before. But for many, many others, it took two and a half years before they even knew they were actually free.

Juneteenth (June 19, 1865) was the day federal troops made it to Galveston, Texas to ensure that all enslaved people were set free. It was on this day that all people celebrated; and therefore, on this day that we celebrate a moment in our nation's history when we as a people stepped that much closer to the ideal and identity upon which this country was founded: that we are united.

You can read more about the history behind Juneteenth over here.

How should we celebrate Juneteenth?

Now that we know why we celebrate Juneteenth, how exactly do we (or should we) celebrate? Good question! Here’s an easy way to remember two ways to celebrate: enjoy and educate.

  1. Enjoy yourself! 🎉 🎊
    1. Juneteenth is a celebration! Turn down for what?! Last year we celebrated by enjoying cocktails honoring the kind of drinks people would have enjoyed then. It was a custom mixture of watermelon, strawberries, mango, vodka, and a few smaller additions to make it kick just right. 
    2. You can also rejoice with those who are rejoicing. If you have friends who are celebrating Juneteenth, go enjoy life and be happy with them. If you don’t have friends who celebrate Juneteenth, be on the lookout because there might be some to you closer than you think.
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  1. Educate yourself! 📚📱
    1. Juneteenth is American history! If you didn’t know what Juneteenth was before reading this, no worries at all. This is precisely the first step in education: exposure. Now that you know a little bit, take some time (at least once a year) to learn a little bit more about this and other facts regarding our country’s history. 
    2. One low barrier to education refers back to enjoying life with friends. If you have friends that celebrate Juneteenth, ask them to give you a little more information about it and other facts about American history. If you don’t have friends that celebrate Juneteenth, that’s ok too. There are really great resources online, even one working to make it a recognized federal holiday.
    3. Reading is a great way to learn from someone else's perspective. So why not start with a book of the same title as the holiday! On Juneteenth by Annette Gordon-Reed is a historical recount of the day and days leading up to June 19th. “On Juneteenth is both an essential account and a stark reminder that the fight for equality is exigent and ongoing.” Do books move you? We have a well-reviewed list for the family to learn together. We also have a list of books to learn more about the history of our country and how to move forward honoring it. Oh, and here is a great list from the book giants behind at Random House. Don't forget! If you have a book to recommend, please let us know!

A momentous occasion

Juneteenth was not a memorial, it was a moment that we must commemorate yearly! We want to encourage you to celebrate that. And along the way, learn a thing or two, reflect and remember. Then celebrate some more because though our country has a long way to go, we have certainly come a long way.

Featured Photo Credit: Photo by Slim Emcee

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