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Organizer: Juneteenth event to celebrate all cultures

By Johnathan Silver
June 13, 2014 at 1:13 a.m.
Updated June 14, 2014 at 1:14 a.m.


IF YOU GO

• WHAT: Multicultural Taste of Soul

WHEN: 9 a.m. June 21

• WHERE: Riverside Park, Special Events Area

• COST: Free

CONTACT: If you are part of a musical group or want to share your culture in another way, such as having a booth at the event, for example, contact Verlinn S. Avery at 361-573-4187.

Victoria resident Verlinn S. Avery wants all people, especially children, to experience Juneteenth celebrations.

"If we focus on young children, we can make some headway," the Old Landmark Committee president and founder said.

Juneteenth celebrations mark the date - June 19, 1865 - when Union soldiers arrived in Galveston to announce the end of the Civil War and enforce the end of slavery in Texas, more than two years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation.

Celebrating this moment is important to the black community in America, but Avery wants it also to be an opportunity to bring other cultures together and celebrate all people.

Her organization is hosting Multicultural Taste of Soul on June 21 in Riverside Park to promote just that, and she hopes to see children, other young people and a display of cultures.

She said her group wants to display a positive example of how to observe Juneteenth, the oldest known celebration of the end of slavery in the United States.

"We're trying to teach them about their culture and keep it in perspective," she said.

Though a dark time in the history of America and the black community, Avery said, she wants events such as Taste of Soul to be a reminder of what ancestors endured, overcame and celebrated.

"It's up to us to take it and make it better," she said. "I know it's going to take a long time, but we will get there."

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