Juneteenth Celebration

Juneteenth_Banner 2023


Juneteenth marks the day in 1865 when federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas to take control of the state and ensure that all 250,000 enslaved people were freed. It came a full two and a half years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. Honoring Juneteenth is more complicated than just recognizing the emancipation of enslaved people in our country. It is a day that focuses on fighting racism here and abroad that prevents equity, creates disproportionate suffering, and harms Black adults and children across the globe.

It was the emancipation of enslaved people in the US that allowed this country to turn the page from its most heinous past and chart a more prosperous future. Although it is a celebration, it also signifies our obligation to continue to be advocates for truth and freedom in our communities and throughout the world.

City Events for Juneteenth Jubilee 2023

KanKouran West African Dance Class
Friday, June 16, at 7 p.m. at the Bowie Ice Arena 
(3330 Northview Drive)

The community is invited to participate in a free African dance class with KanKouran West African Dance Company at the Bowie Ice Arena. All ages and abilities are welcome. Wear comfortable clothing and celebrate dance and music for Juneteenth!

KanKouran West African Dance Company

Film Showing: 42: The Jackie Robinson Story 
Friday, June 16, at dusk (around 9 p.m.) at the Bowie Ice Arena

42 the movie banner

The City of Bowie will kick off the Juneteenth holiday weekend with the screening of the movie 42 The Jackie Robinson Story at the Bowie Ice Arena. The movie honors the contributions of Jackie Robinson, who in 1947 became the first African American Major League Baseball (MLB) player in modern history. Both moving and inspirational, the film 42 follows Robinson’s trials and tribulations as he signs on to the Brooklyn Dodgers under team manager Branch Rickey. The film broke the record for highest box office opening weekend for a baseball movie. As of 2014, no major league player will be allowed to wear #42 without special request or approval.

As a review in ESSENCE magazine stated: 

In the film, Chadwick Boseman humanizes the Brooklyn Dodger first baseman and Hall of Famer and adeptly captures the challenges and hatred Robinson faced during that tumultuous time. Instead of giving viewers a sanitized version of history meant to show Robinson at his best, Boseman masterfully depicts the emotional turmoil Robinson experienced. 

Our very own Bowie Baysox staff will be onsite before the movie!  Get your Baysox promo items and enter a free raffle for a Baysox prize gift package.  

Bring food, a blanket, or chairs to enjoy the movie. The movie will begin at dusk.  

Juneteenth Family Reunion
Saturday, June 17, 2023, 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. at Allen Pond Park

Juneteenth Family Reunion Flyer 

Don't miss this FREE event!  The City of Bowie and Ruby's Southern Comfort Kitchen are partnering to bring you the Juneteenth Family Reunion!  The celebration will bring appreciation and recognition of African American history by creating an atmosphere of unity through a modern-day celebration of heritage that educates and engages the broader community, and inspires future changemakers family reunion style! 

Join us for food, inflatable rides, music, dance, games, marketplace vendors, art, health & wellness, a petting zoo and entertainment. This event is open to the entire community of all ages. We want to see you!

Third Annual Fathers & Families Juneteenth Celebration Bike Ride 
Sunday, June 18, 9 a.m. (begins at Allen Pond Park)

The City of Bowie Police Department invites fathers and families to celebrate Father's Day with a morning bike ride. There is a 20-mile option, or a 45-mile option, both are for experienced riders. The bike ride begins and ends at Allen Pond Park. Pre-registration is required. Riders will meet at Allen Pond at 8 a.m. and push off at 9 a.m.

7-on-7 Football Tournament
Sunday, June 18, 9 a.m.
Mitchellville Field
(3101 Mitchellville Road - across from Allen Pond Park)

Football Classic Flyer MAIN

The City of Bowie Police Department and My Brothers Keeper invite fathers and families to join them in a Father's Day and Juneteenth celebration. This event will take place at Mitchellville Field across from Allen Pond Park. Middle and high school teams will compete in a 7-on-7 Tournament and a Big Man's Challenge.  Teams must register to play.

Juneteenth Concert
Sunday, June 18, 7 p.m. at Allen Pond Park

As part of the Summer Concert Series at Allen Pond Park, the Proverbs Band will be on hand for a Juneteenth celebration performance at the Robert V. Setera Amphitheater at Allen Pond Park.  


Allen Pond Park is located at 3330 Northview Drive, Bowie.

Links to other Juneteenth videos:


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Black Heritage - Juneteenth - Prince George's County Memorial Library System (pgcmls.info) https://youtu.be/kJ_glcMeo3w (MNCPPC Juneteenth 2015)

Juneteenth Worldwide Celebration

Honoring Juneteenth Through Art in Galveston, Texas - The New York Times (nytimes.com) The Historical Legacy of Juneteenth | National Museum of African American History and Culture (si.edu)

Freedmen’s Bureau Transportation Records: Letters of “Sold” Former Slaves Seeking to Rejoin Loved Ones by Damani Davis, Reference Archivist at the National Archives in Washington, DC. From Rediscovering Black History, the National Archives blog of the Black History Guide, sharing records relating to the Black Experience at the National Archives.

Video: Genealogy and the “Freedman’s Bank:” Records of the Freedman’s Savings & Trust Company by Damani Davis, Reference Archivist at the National Archives in Washington, DC. Handout online. 

Video: Freedman's Bank 150th Anniversary Celebration

The Freedmen’s Bureau Preservation Project, by (retired) archivist Reginald Washington, Prologue Magazine

Sealing the Sacred Bonds of Holy Matrimony, Freedmen's Bureau Marriage Records, by (retired) archivist Reginald Washington, Prologue Magazine  

National Archives Safeguards Original ‘Juneteenth’ General Order, National Archives News

The Freedmen's Bureau records at the National Archives

Video: Let No Man Put Asunder: Freedmen's Bureau Marriage Records, by (retired) archivist Reginald Washington

Online resources: African American History National Archives News special topics page

Records of the Freedmen’s Bureau and the Reconstruction of Black Families, Rediscovering Black History, by Bob Nowatzki, Archives Technician, National Archives in College Park, MD.

Links to Freedmen's Bureau Resources

Select Images from the Freedmen's Bureau

The Rost Home Colony, St. Charles Parish, Louisiana, Prologue

From Slave Women to Free Women: The National Archives and Black Women's History in the Civil War Era, Prologue

Slave Emancipation Through the Prism of Archives Records, Prologue

The Freedman's Savings and Trust Company and African American Genealogical Research, by Reginald Washington, Prologue