Fresno getting ready for Juneteenth celebration

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Fresno is getting ready for its annual Juneteenth parade on Saturday, but the celebrations kicked off Friday night with a festival at the African American museum.

Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer played the cowbell at the event and joined several other musicians on stage Friday night.

Juneteenth is a nationally celebrated holiday which commemorates the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863.

Along with music there were also educational speeches to celebrate a critical milestone in American history.

"What we do, we call it Juneteenth every year this weekend we celebrate freedom, being free in America," Fresno City Council Member Oliver Baines said.

The Emancipation Proclamation was announced in January 1863 but it wasn't until June of that year that word spread throughout the country informing all African Americans of their freedom.

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