BOZEMAN, Mont. — Montana State University will host its first Juneteenth Celebration Monday, June 19 on the lawn north of Romney Hall.
The event will celebrate Black excellence and American history and commemorate the emancipation of enslaved African Americans.
The event includes multiple speakers, music and food.
MSU released the following information:
Montana State University’s inaugural Juneteenth Celebration will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Monday, June 19, on the lawn north of Romney Hall on campus.
This free, public event aims to celebrate Black excellence and American history and Juneteenth, the federal holiday commemorating the emancipation of enslaved African Americans. The event will feature a fun-filled, family friendly festival including speakers, music and food. It is hosted by the MSU Office of Diversity and Inclusion, the Diversity and Inclusion Student Commons, and the Associated Students of MSU.
“We hope this event will build community in Bozeman while also shining a light on an important part of American history,” said Sanai Mitchell and Kaileia Wendt, co-presidents of the Black Student Union, a registered student organization on campus. Mitchell and Wendt are also members of this year’s Juneteenth Celebration planning committee. “Through food, music and stories we can celebrate our American history and African American culture.”
Live entertainment will be provided by a jazz quintet featuring local musicians. They will be followed by Bozeman-based DJ Josh Perkins of Justus Entertainment.
Dinner will be provided with a selection of main dishes, sides and desserts that hold historical and contemporary significance, such as fried chicken, macaroni and cheese, cornbread and sweet potato pie. These dishes, known as soul food, have deep roots in African American history — emerging from slavery and symbolizing resilience — while being enjoyed by people worldwide.
“I am very excited to be a part of something so wonderful and powerful,” said Sara Teklehaimanot, an MSU employee and member of the planning committee. “It brings me joy to celebrate an important part of American history. It's important that we commemorate the liberation of slaves who’ve helped build this country.”
The planning committee members said they are excited to welcome community members to campus to participate in the event. Free parking is available after 6 p.m. in outdoor parking lots. More information on parking can be found at https://www.montana.edu/parking/.