Lufkin Gets Ready For A Historic Holiday - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

06/17/05 - Lufkin

Lufkin Gets Ready For A Historic Holiday

by Ramonica R. Jones

From a week-long display at Lufkin City Hall to the historic celebration at Brandon Park, plans are in place for Juneteenth.

Members of the Friendship Social Club first fired up barbecue pits at 8:00 a.m. Friday morning, but Juneteenth isn't just about celebrations, food, and parades. It's a historic date everyone should want to be a part of.

You can bet there'll be a big crowd at Brandon Park Saturday, but J. W. Johnson admits some of the people who'll show up won't know what's behind the celebration.

"Don't forget [from where] we've come; your forefathers, grandfathers, grandmothers - the struggle they had during the hard times. When I say hard times; back in the days of slavery."

Two hundred fifty-thousand of those slaves were freed in Texas, but they didn't find out until June 19, 1865. That's almost three years after President Abraham Lincoln officially freed slaves around the country.

That day is now celebrated as Juneteenth, a day that'll never be forgotten.

Johnson said, "We just want everybody in East Texas, if you get a chance, stop by and visit with us at Brandon Park on June 18th and enjoy yourself."

The Friendship Social Club will have a parade starting at Brandon Park at 11:00 a.m. Saturday. There'll also be a program at 2:00 p.m., also at Brandon Park, followed by a free barbeque dinner at 3:00 p.m.

There'll be a Juneteenth parade at 10:00 a.m. at McGrimm Park in Nacogdoches. There's also a volleyball tournament planned, as well as a domino tournament.

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