After the recent Walmart-Juneteenth fiasco, many people are left wondering about the best practices for celebrating the now federal holiday. It became an official federal holiday in 2021. However, many people didn’t have enough time to prep since President Biden signed the bill the Thursday before the holiday. Almost a year later, brands, companies and individuals have enough time to prepare for their celebrations… but how?
Before we can get into the fun times and celebrations, you need to know why you’re doing all of the in the first place. One thing we’re not about to do is Cinco De Mayo-ize our holiday. The Mexican holiday is typically overshadowed by drinks and Mexican eats under the guise of “Mexican Independence Day” which it is not. People every year turn a blind eye on what that holiday really means and we are NOT allowing that on this Black holiday. You can watch films on the holiday and slavery. There are also several books to read as well as museums to visit. The resources are at your fingertips! You just have to use them.
Support Black Owned Businesses
Circulating the Black dollar in our own communities is essential to celebrating the freedom of our people. Now more than ever, we need to unite as one on every level starting with keeping our own businesses afloat. Although this holiday’s origins derives from the ending of slavery, I personally use it as a day to show my pride in being Black (although I typically am very Blackity-Black the other 364 days of the year). What better way to show my pride and love for myself and my people than by supporting their business endeavors?
Encourage Your Workplace/Community To Celebrate Together
Juneteenth is also a time to rejoice together. Uplifting your community is important especially as a Black person because most times we’re all we have. You can keep it simple by asking neighbors to all put up Juneteenth signs in their yards or windows. If you want to take it a step further, you could host a community event that highlights different Black people in the community. In the workplace, you could suggest doing simple celebrations in the office by having decorations in a conference room along with refreshments and give an explanation of the holiday. If you really want to shake the table at your job, you could have an open discussion about the company’s diversity initiatives to make sure employees from all backgrounds know what is offered to them but also that they know they are an asset to the company.
(The One You’ve Been Waiting For) Host A Gathering
Whether it be a small function with a few close friends or a whole cookout, we are rejoicing, ah-kay! Grab some drinks, some party favors and some music and celebrate being the beautiful Black person you are with your beautiful Black support system. We are a diverse, unique and triumphant people! We deserve to celebrate our heritage.