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Boston celebrates Juneteenth!

Celina Colby
Celina Colby is an arts and travel reporter with a fondness for Russian novels.... VIEW BIO
Boston celebrates Juneteenth!
The ICA is free on Juneteenth. Enjoy live music from local jazz musicians. PHOTO: Meg Elkinton

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Wednesday is Juneteenth, a national celebration commemorating the end of slavery in the United States. Boston is showing up to celebrate, with parades, festivals, block parties and free museum admission around the city.

H.I.V.E Street: A Juneteenth Celebration

When: Saturday, June 15, 6-9 pm
Where: Starlight Square , Cambridge
Info: Gather under the stars in Central Square for a block party in celebration of Juneteenth. Vibe out to beats by DJ Gilly, DJ NIIC and DJ Imperial, purchase food from local vendors, shop a marketplace of Black-owned businesses and more. Free.

Soul Weekend: a Juneteenth Celebration

When: Saturday, June 15 and Sunday, June 16, 11 am-10 pm
Where: 25 Kingston St., Boston
Info: Fete, a downtown restaurant and lounge, will celebrate Black culture, music and community all day, all weekend with a special soul-food pop-up with Chef Jones and live music performances. $10.

Embrace Ideas Festival

When: Tuesday, June 18-Friday, June 21
Where: Venues around Boston
Info: Embrace Boston hosts an annual week-long celebration of Juneteenth featuring insightful lectures, an awards ceremony for civic and community leaders, and a free block party at Roxbury Community College June 21 at 3 pm. Free to $350, varies per event.

Enjoy free admission to MFA Boston, along with live performances, art-making and more. PHOTO: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Juneteenth Open House at MFA Boston

When: Wednesday, June 19, 10 am-5 pm
Where: Fenway
Info: Admission to the MFA is free for Massachusetts residents on Juneteenth, including access to the special exhibit “Hallyu! The Korean Wave.” The day includes live performances, art-making activities, a drag story hour, face-painting and more. Free.

Cambridge Juneteenth Parade

When: Wednesday, June 19, 10 am
Where: Cambridge City Hall
Info: Honor Juneteenth by joining a celebratory parade from Cambridge City Hall to Riverside Press Park. At the park participants will hear speakers, listen to music, and participate in arts and crafts. Free.

Juneteenth at the ICA Boston

When: Wednesday, June 19, 10 am-5 pm
Where: Seaport
Info: The ICA is free to all on Juneteenth and so is the water taxi across the harbor to the museum’s Watershed location in East Boston, although advance reservations are required. On the Seaport side, enjoy live music from local jazz musicians from 12-4 pm with partner Jazz Urbane Cafe while overlooking the waterfront. Free.

Juneteenth with Boston Harbor Islands

When: Wednesday, June 19, 9:30 am-5 pm
Where: Boston Harbor Islands Welcome Center & Georges Island
Info: Listen to live music by R&B and gospel recording artist Aric B. at the Boston Harbor Islands Welcome Center and take a ferry to Georges Island for a special guided tour focusing on Boston’s maritime underground railroad. Free to $25.

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Juneteenth Free Day at the Gardner Museum

When: Wednesday, June 19, 11 am-5 pm
Where: Fenway
Info: Celebrate this historic day with free admission to the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. Activities include art-making, film
screenings, panel discussions with Black artists and leaders, live performances and more. Free.

Juneteenth Block Party: A Family Reunion

When: Wednesday, June 19, 12-4 pm
Where: Florida Ruffin Ridley School, Brookline
Info: Join Brookline For the Culture for an afternoon of live music, Caribbean and soul food, a dance party with a live DJ, ice cream, bounce houses, face painting and more in celebration of Juneteenth. Free.

14th Annual Boston Juneteenth Emancipation Observance

When: Wednesday, June 19, 12:30 pm
Where: The Museum of the National Center for Afro American Artists
Info: Begin the afternoon with a flag-raising at Roxbury’s Dillaway-Thomas House, then join a celebratory Juneteenth parade to the Museum of the National Center for Afro American Artists, where a gathering with neighbors and local vendors will commence. Free.

Hella Black Trivia

When: Thursday, June 20, 6:30 pm
Where: Grove Hall Branch of the Boston Public Library
Info: Bring friends and family to BPL’s Grove Hall Branch for this fun trivia night with questions specifically related to Black culture and the African
diaspora. Free.

juneteenth, Juneteenth in Boston