(PHOTOS) Clarkston holds Juneteenth celebration

Fashion designer LaToya Patton, co-owner of ‘Nubian Gods Fashion Designers’ at her vendor table during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.

Clarkston, GA — On June 26, the city of Clarkston held its Juneteenth celebration a week late after rain caused the city to cancel the original June 19 date.

The delayed celebration was held at Milam Park and featured African dance and drumming, spoken word and song, vendors and food.

Clarkston Mayor Beverly Burks said, “Last week our ancestors were crying tears of joy.  We decided to reschedule to today (June 26) because it’s very important that we recognize Juneteenth because in Clarkston we have a population of over 59 percent African American descent. We are coming to remember the point that it took two years on June 19, 1865 for slaves in Texas to find out that they were free, but we still have to remember that freedom isn’t free, that it’s a constant struggle for us to make sure that we empower everyone and everyone in our community.

“So today is an awakening, a reminder of who Clarkston is. Clarkston is the most diverse city per square mile in the United States and it is home to refugees, immigrants, Blacks whites, Asians and all in between. All continents are represented here in Clarkston. What we also want to recognize is the importance of our community and the importance of our African American community and that we continue to recognize and talk about the accomplishments of what we do.”

Clarkston Vice-Mayor Awet Eyasu on left, and Ronnie Amin of Clarkston on right, learn African dance moves and their meaning from Manga African Dance during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Clarkston Mayor Beverly Burks, second from left, dances with members of Manga African Dance during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Clarkston employee Jonathan English grills burgers during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
12-year-old Mbukani passes a soccer ball with a group of young people from Soccer in the Streets during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Clarkston Mayor Beverly Burks (front row on far right) poses for a photo with a group of young people from Soccer in the Streets during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Daniel Ault (@X.D1.Dreamz) performs an original composition during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Food vendor A.Y Cuisine serves up meals during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Members of Manga African Dance perform during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Members of Manga African Dance perform during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Drummers Amara Camara, on left, and Fatima Sabbatt perform during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Vendor Mary Jenkins of ‘Friend Me Pillows’ sold her hand made creations during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Some of the merchandise for sale by vendor ‘Nubian Gods Fashion Designers’ during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
‘Yama Elegance’ vendor Mariama Lee, on left, shows some of her merchandise to a family attending the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Gwendolyn J. Napier aka Miss LuvDrop from Kuumba Storytellers of Georgia performs as Harriet Tubman during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Gwendolyn J. Napier aka Miss LuvDrop from Kuumba Storytellers of Georgia strikes a pose as Harriet Tubman during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Entertainer Obiaj performs during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.
From left, Sofi, Anna and Apendeki show their Juneteenth bracelets during the city of Clarkston Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 26. Photo by Dean Hesse.

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