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Juneteenth Celebrations The upcoming week in the Lexington and Rockbridge County area features multiple opportunities to honor Juneteenth and connect with the local community.  

5414647-scaled-800x533wp-1140x759 Juneteenth Celebrations

The Lexington and Rockbridge area will host multiple events in the upcoming week honoring Juneteenth, the federal and state holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States.

On Friday, June 14, the Glasgow community will hold its celebration beginning at 6 p.m. at the James E. Thompson Sr. Community Center at 207 Catawba St. The event will feature an illustrated slideshow presented by Rockbridge Historical Society Executive Director Eric Wilson, followed by an audience Q&A. The event will also involve a screening of “Ruby Bridges,” a family-friendly film about the first student to integrate at an all-white elementary school in Louisiana. The film screening will be preceded by a talk given by Alison Bell, Washington and Lee University professor of anthropology, about an oral history project on school desegregation in western Virginia, pioneered by the late Professor of History Emeritus Ted DeLaney.

On Saturday, June 15, Lexington will host a celebration in Richardson Park from 6:30 to 9 p.m. featuring live music, food trucks, children’s activities and a voter registration drive coordinated by 50 Ways Rockbridge and the NAACP. In the case of inclement weather, all activities will be moved inside nearby Lylburn Downing Middle School.

On Wednesday, June 19 at 5 p.m., the DeLaney Center will offer its final film screening in its popular Screen to Square film series in Stackhouse Theater inside Elrod Commons. “The Watsons Go to Birmingham,” based on the 1997 novel of the same name, will be followed by a panel discussion involving local middle school students. The book on which the film is based is taught annually within the Lylburn Downing Middle School curriculum.

For those unable to attend this week’s upcoming events, Nelson Gallery in downtown Lexington is once again offering its annual Juneteenth Art Show throughout the month of June, sponsored by Project Horizon. Visitors will be able to view the exhibition, which explores the themes of domestic violence and the legacy of slavery, until June 26.

Learn more information about upcoming Juneteenth events in the area; and visit the DeLaney Center’s website for more on the academic forum that promotes teaching and research on race and Southern identity.