This year Tattnall County held its second annual Juneteenth holiday celebration in Glennville on Saturday, June 17, 2023, on the grounds of First African Baptist Church and St. James A.M.E. Church. The event was a success and was even bigger and better than last year. Last year, the event took place at Surrency Park in Reidsville. It was the first organized celebration of Freedom Day held in Tattnall County.
Juneteenth became a Federal holiday on June 17, 2021, when President Joe Biden signed it into law after Congress passed the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act earlier that month. The state of Georgia recognized Juneteenth as an official holiday in 2022 when Governor Brian Kemp signed House Bill 1335, which expanded the number of paid state holidays for Georgia employees from 12 to 13.
Juneteenth commemorates the end of the Civil War, when enslaved people in Galveston, Texas, are declared free under the terms of the Emancipation Proclamation. The day is celebrated throughout the country with picnics, rodeos, street fairs, cook outs, family reunions, parties, and festivals.
This year’s list of vendors were:
- Karla Bacon – jewelry
- King and Sassy – body oil, handmade candles
- Cove by Lamya – handmade soaps and scents for the car
- Be’Nae’s – food truck
- Madison Williams – Krafty kids, handmade jewelry earrings and bracelets
- Marie’s Creative Designs – Fried Fish
- Naomi Creative Designs – T-shirts
- Destiny Hargrove – Puff & Stuff speciality popcorn
- Felicia Johnson – Virtuous crochet earrings, blankets and clothes
- Ashlee Harmon – face painting
Several door prizes were given away for kids and adults. There was some Juneteenth Trivia prizes. Michelle Arthur was the winner of the 50/50 raffle. Jessie Rhodes was the winner of the Father’s Day of a give-away of a $50 gift card. Krystian Lanier won the Hoola Hoop contest. Skyler Bacon and Lee Harvey were the cornhole champions. Jerrod Barlow took first in the remote control car contest.
Trai Williams was the Master of Ceremonies for the occasion. Musical entertainment was provided by Lasatress Murphy – Inspirational Soul Artist along with Katelyn Ryals. The Juneteenth committee would like to give special thanks to all the sponsors who helped make this event possible, including the Masons who assisted with parking and King Brothers who provided a tent.
The Juneteenth committee members are: Micah King, Rondale Harvey, Ricky Arthur, Sr., Gladys Butler, Angie Costen, Verdie Williams, Cyrus Purdiman, Emily Murphy, Trai Williams, Renae Haynes, Frances Byrd, JoAnn Anderson, Herman Lovett, and Tawanna Williams.
The committee promises next year’s celebration will be even bigger. The location will be determined at a later date.