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Where to Celebrate Juneteenth Around Baltimore This Week

From bingo nights and Black History lectures to live music and the city's annual AFRAM festival, here are 10 events to commemorate the holiday.

Fireworks, red-themed eats and drinks, and barbecues in the sweltering early-summer heat will fill the city this week as many Baltimoreans celebrate Juneteenth—the holiday marking the anniversary of the effective end of slavery on June 19, 1865, when the last enslaved people were freed from Galveston, Texas.

While Juneteenth has been celebrated since the late 1800s, it wasn’t recognized as a federal holiday until 2021. Since then, celebrations have only ramped up across the country—especially in the years following COVID-19 shutdowns—and Baltimore is no exception.

From bingo nights and Black History lectures to live music and the city’s annual AFRAM festival, here are 10 ways to celebrate Juneteenth this week.

6/17: Juneteenth Celebration: Beats-n-Bingo
The Enoch Pratt Free Library is partnering with DJ B-Eazy to host a 21-and-older event featuring bingo, tunes, and free food. Attendees can even win prizes—from merchandise to special giveaways—if they’re the first to call out “bingo.”

6/18: Juneteenth Presentation at Enoch Pratt Free Library
Baltimore Black History maven Bradley Alston will give a presentation about the origins of Juneteenth and its significance during a talk at Enoch Pratt’s Central Library. He will also answer audience questions during a post-lecture Q&A.

6/18: Online Juneteenth Discussion
Learn more about equitable access to education from the comfort of home with this online discussion organized by the social justice pros at Impact Media Partners. Panelists from NAACP, Maryland Public Television, and Brooklyn College will answer audience questions and preview clips from upcoming PBS documentary The Five Demands, which follows the 1969 student strike calling for more diversity in higher education.

6/19: Rhythm Liberation Fest
Head to the Baltimore Museum of Industry for this lively festival hosted by BLK Ass Flea Market and Love Groove Entertainment. Highlights will include scratch-made goods for sale by 30 Black-owned small businesses, as well as workshops, panel discussions, a vinyl swap, and a kids’ corner. The night will end on a high note with performances by multidisciplinary artist Akilah Divine, Love Groove founder John Tyler, and vocalist Ashley Lakayla Yates—more fondly known as Black Assets—against the backdrop of the sparkling waterfront. 

6/19: Juneteenth-Solstice Celebration
This faith-based event at Leakin Park will include African American and Native American drummers, crafts, storytelling, fishing lessons, native plant gardening, a bug hunt, and guided walks in the woods to honor freedom and environmental justice. Attendees are encouraged to bring a zero-waste picnic, yoga mat, and gardening gloves.

6/19: Brown Sugar Fashion Gala
Celebrate Juneteenth in style with a fashion show featuring works by designer Stevie Boi at The Assembly Room. The downtown showcase will use culture, elegance, and soul to highlight fashion while commemorating the holiday. 

6/19: AFRO News Celebration of the Black Press
At the Center Club, Karsonya “Kaye” Wise Whitehead, the founding director of Loyola’s Karson Institute of Race, Peace, and Social Justice, will speak at a two-hour event hosted by The Afro to honor leaders and institutions who have contributed to Juneteenth. The event’s theme is “Celebrating the Black Press,” which will highlight pioneering journalists who chronicled underrepresented voices in times of racial inequality. 

6/19: Reginald F. Lewis Museum Juneteenth Celebration
The Inner Harbor museum is hosting an entire lineup of programming centered on themes of freedom, jubilee, and reparations. Joan M.E. Gaither—a documentary story quilter—will host a discussion on emancipation, where attendees can create their own Juneteenth quilt block square. There will also be a concert from the Carter Legacy Singers and a monologue performance honoring Black Woman Genius fiber artists. The day will conclude with a talk about reparations in Baltimore, along with a screening of Pay Up…Get Out of the Way with filmmaker John Comer. Visitors will enjoy Juneteenth refreshments while supplies last.

6/22: Juneteenth in Carroll County
Carroll County is hosting its third-annual Juneteenth commemoration at its community college, which will offer children’s activities, a DJ, live music, and vendors. The event will provide a space for reflection and rejoicing to commemorate African American freedom.

6/22-23: AFRAM
The city’s beloved AFRAM festival—one of the largest African American fests on the East Coast—is returning to Druid Hill Park for two days of energetic entertainment, local food, and shopping. Crowds of more than 150,000 are expected to fill the 745-acre park for the festivities, which will highlight headliners like Busta Rhymes, October London, Alex Isley, Mya, Big Daddy Kane, Karen Clark-Sheard, and Morris Day.