Hundreds celebrate Juneteenth in Dix Park

18 June 2022

— Despite the cancellation of the Oberlin Village Heritage 5K, the second annual Capital City Juneteenth Celebration went on as planned at Dix Park Saturday.

Organizers told WRAL News the attendance was at least double last year’s. At least 2,600 people came through Dix Park Saturday to celebrate together.

The theme of this year’s Juneteenth celebration was “Preserving the Past, Moving it Forward.”

“It was just a nice day! It’s Juneteenth, it’s from our roots so we just wanted to come out here and pay our respects and enjoy all the festivities that they have going on,” said attendee Rukkaya Shelton. “I’ve been up there dancing and everything! Having a great time.”

From food trucks, to live music, to a children’s area, the celebration appeals to all ages.

The chapel at Dix Park was filled with educational materials on the importance of the day.

Event organizer Sarah Moses explained not all enslaved persons were freed when Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1st, 1863.

“There were still slaves in Galveston, Texas,” said Moses.

Those enslaved persons were freed years later, on June 19th, 1865.

Remembering that experience, and celebrating freedom at Dix Park has taken months of preparation.

“This has been ongoing throughout the year,” said Moses.

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