Festival Extends to Two-Days and Kicks Off in front of City Hall

Syracuse Common Councilor Rasheada Caldwell and SU Women’s Basketball Coach Felisha Legette-Jack serve as Grand Marshals

Syracuse, NY—The Syracuse Juneteenth Committee Inc. announced the 32nd annual Juneteenth Cultural Festival and Parade is returning to Downtown Syracuse on June 17 and 18. The Juneteenth Festival will take place on the 200 block of East Washington Street in front of City Hall. The festival kicks off Friday June 17 at 12:00 p.m. during a City Hall flag raising ceremony.

The parade procession begins Saturday, June 18th at 10:30 a.m. in front of the Dunbar Center. The route will travel through the Southside and proceed up N Salina Street to arrive in front of City Hall to continue day two of festivities. Grand Marshals for the 2022 parade will be Syracuse Common Councilwoman Rasheada Caldwell and Syracuse University Women’s Basketball Coach Felisha Legette-Jack.

“Bringing the festival back has been a big lift but we’re excited to do it and to bring residents and vendors back together to celebrate the national holiday with the rest of the county. Each year we’re making Black contributions more and more a part of American history. We’re so appreciative to new and returning vendors and sponsors who are making this possible,” said Kevin Henry Syracuse Juneteenth President. “We are still looking for food vendors and most importantly for families and workers to step away from home and come down to City Hall to enjoy the festivities.”

Festival entertainment lineup continues to bring together local and national acts:

  • DJ John
  • DJ Zulu 
  • R&B Soul Band Meditations
  • R&B Soul Band Trump Tight 315
  • R&B Soul Band UAD
  • R&B Show Band Atlas
  • R&B National Recording Artist Jon B
  • Gospel Group Burnell Reid (Syracuse)
  • Gospel Group Salvation Army Gospel Choir (Syracuse)
  • Gospel Group Lindsey Williams and Divine Connection (NYC)

The festival is also bringing back games for children and families, crafts, an African dance collective from across New York State, and is partnering with youth organizer, Kenyata Calloway, to bring back the Miss and Little Miss Juneteenth Pageant which will be Friday June 17.  The committee is also bringing back the annual Ancestral Dinner on June 24. More information will be made available on the syracusejuneteenth.org website in the days to come.

Syracuse’s annual celebration of Juneteenth commemorates with what is now a national holiday commemorating the June 19, 1865 announcement to the slaves of Galveston, Texas that the Civil War was over and that slavery was abolished. The festival, like many other public gatherings, had been canceled because of COVID-19. The interruption hindered opportunities for many pop-up vendors and retailers to earn income and connect with consumers. Vendors wanting to sell goods or purchase a slot at the festival can apply online at syracusejuneteenth.org. Questions about Juneteenth can be emailed to syracusejuneteenth315@gmail.com

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