William & Mary will host its first in-person Juneteenth celebration on Friday, June 17 at the site of the recently completed Hearth: Memorial to the Enslaved.
The event, which runs from 3 to 7 p.m., will feature speakers, performers, food trucks, vendors and more. It is free and open to the university and surrounding communities. People who plan on attending are encouraged to bring folding chairs or blankets.
“This community collaboration has been a wonderful partnership,” said W&M Chief Diversity Officer Chon Glover, co-chair of the W&M Juneteenth Committee. “We are very honored to host the Friday events at the recently dedicated Hearth: Memorial to the Enslaved on Historic Campus. We look forward to welcoming the community to see this space of reverence where we honor the known and unknown individuals who built and maintained the university for over 170 years.”
W&M’s event will begin with welcoming remarks, an explanation of the history of Juneteenth and a musical performance. Poets, musicians, speakers from the campus and local communities will perform at the main stage throughout the rest of the event. Vendor and food truck options will include local community organizations and Black-owned businesses. More information is available on the W&M Juneteenth website.
The memorial, which was dedicated in May, is located near Jamestown Road, across the street from the Undergraduate Admission office. Parking will be available without a pass in the Campus Center and Zable Stadium lots.
Editor’s note: According to a June 3 email from Human Resources, all W&M faculty and staff members planning to attend this event may leave work early to attend. This is a signature tradition like Charter Day or Convocation, and all are encouraged to come for part or all of the program as their schedule allows. For staff members, there is no need to request or report leave when attending the event; please coordinate with your supervisor or dean. Individuals not attending the celebration would continue working their normal schedule.
Erin Zagursky, Senior Associate Director of University News