The Beverly/Morgan Park Juneteenth Family Festival aims to honor our ancestors, celebrate African and African-American cultural heritage, unite our diverse community, and connect Chicago residents with resources and services.
Juneteenth Family Festival: June 17th, 2023
110th & Longwood | Chicago IL
Beverly/Morgan Park Juneteenth Family Festival
The annual Beverly/Morgan Park Juneteenth Family Festival is hosted by Juneteenth Family Festival Organization and Burst into Books.
Juneteenth Family Festival is the FIRST official Juneteenth organization in the state of Illinois! It is a non-profit organization created for the sole purpose of serving the local community and greater Chicago-land area every year in honor of Juneteenth. The first annual festival launched in 2019 as a small gathering in the Dan Ryan Woods but quickly expanded each year. With up to 3,000 attendees expected this upcoming Juneteenth, the festival continues to organically grow and serve the needs of the community.
Supported by sponsorships, fundraisers, and a plethora of individual donors, we bring to you Chicago’s premier and authentic Juneteenth celebration! Nestled in the heart of Chicago’s south-side Beverly and Morgan Park communities, the festival highlights an array of family-centered activities including health and wellness screenings, African drumming, storytelling, entertainment, retail shopping, and much, much more!
For full event details, please check out our festival summary.
The History of Juneteenth
Juneteenth (short for June Nineteenth) is a holiday that marks the end of slavery in the United States and is celebrated each year across the country. In 1863, the Emancipation Proclamation freed enslaved Black Americans of the Confederate States. However, it took a long time for word to travel across the country and slavery continued in many places as a result. As states received the word, the residing slaves were freed. Texas, the most western state of the Confederacy, was the last state to receive word. On June 19th, 1865, troops marched into Galveston, Texas and announced that slaves were free.
After the slaves in Texas finally received word of their freedom two years after it was declared nationally illegal, celebrations broke out and the day affectionately became known as Juneteenth. The following year, Texans organized a celebration called “Jubilee Day,” on June 19th, and continued to celebrate this day every year thereafter. Over the years, the celebration spread to every state in the country. Some commemorate this day by making an annual pilgrimage to Galveston, Texas, where there are many activities and events held to honor the holiday.
Juneteenth is growing in popularity across the country as a sacred day that recognizes the triumph over contradictions between slavery and democracy. On this day, observers soberly embrace the reverence and appreciation for the liberation of slaves while celebrating Black culture. People celebrate through family gatherings, BBQs, prayer services, festivals, and many other activities. As America celebrates her independence annually on July 4th, Juneteenth is also an Independence Day that many Black Americans feel a special connection to. The day is considered symbolic and meaningful in a different way, given that that perhaps “everyone is not free unless we are all free.”