On March 17, 2016, Gov. Ducey signed Rep. Bolding's HB2226 recognizing June 19 as Juneteenth Day in Arizona – making Arizona the 45th state to recognize Juneteenth as a state holiday or special day of observance. Only five states remain: North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana, Hawaii and New Hampshire.
The annual Valley of the Sun Juneteenth Celebration, which will again return to Eastlake Park and Community Center, will be a time to celebrate this historic moment for the state! This year, we invite you to continue the celebration. Join us for this one-day free festival, which includes several guest speakers against the backdrop of music and dance, sports activities, entertainment and vendors.
Eastlake Park, now Eastlake Park Community Center, opened in 1914 and provided a gathering spot for local African American residents when Phoenix was segregated. Juneteenth was originally held at Eastlake Park then moved to South Mountain Community College in 2004.
Juneteenth is the oldest celebration of the ending of slavery in the United States. It specifically celebrates the state of Texas announcing the abolishment of slavery in 1865, two years after the Emancipation Proclamation was issued in 1863. But Juneteenth offers a time to come together and celebrate the rich cultural history of African Americans.
Valley of the Sun Juneteenth Celebration
Arizona State Director
National Juneteenth Observance Foundation