By Kia Croom
Richmond will celebrate its 10th Annual Juneteenth Family Day Parade and Festival, Saturday, June 22, presented by the Neighborhood Block Association, Chevron Richmond Refinery and the City of Richmond.The parade will start at 10 a.m. at the intersection of Marina Way and Cutting Boulevard. This year’s grand marshal will be former Richmond Mayor Irma Anderson, the first African-American female mayor in the state.
The parade will feature a West Contra Costa County Unified School District parade of scholars. The parade ends up at Nicholl Park, at 33rd and MacDonald streets, where the festival starts at 11:30 a.m.
This year’s event includes two stages of entertainment featuring headliner Lakeside; host and comedian J-Red; Gospel headliner Consonance; the Stars of Judah; The Priesthood; Michael Butler and friends; the Bay Area Blues Society Caravan of Allstars; and a musical tribute to the late Blues legend Jimmy McCracklin by Sue McCracklin and Sweet Nectar.
Other performances will include the Bay Area Steppers, Easter Hill United Methodist Church Praise Dancers and Gospel Hip Hop artist Transparent.
Among the activities will be a Juneteenth Poetry Contest hosted by Richmond youth volunteers. Youth between the ages of 10 and 23 are encouraged to participate. A portion of the festivities will commemorate the lives of children who died from violence.
The celebration of Juneteenth is a national movement. It presents an opportunity to teach the history of freedom from slavery, according to Jerrold Hatchett, president of the Neighborhood Block Association.
Sponsors include: PG&E, Sims Metal Management, Mechanics Bank, DP Security, LifeLong Brookside Community Health Center, Marin Clean Energy, the City of Richmond Office of Neighborhood Safety, KDYA Gospel 1190 The Light, Richmond Community Foundation, Richmond Black Fire Fighters Association, Richmond Police Department, Wal-Mart, Richmond Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the East Bay Center for the Performing Arts.
For information or to volunteer call (510) 620-6516 or visit www.richmondcajuneteenth.org.