A Wonderful Day in the Neighborhood: Heritage Family Day Celebration, Juneteenth

Spirits soared - along with the heat! - in Freedmen's Town on June 19, as RBHY and Shell Black Network Group (SBNG) joined forces to create a community-wide activity honoring Juneteenth - a holiday to celebrate the announcement of freedom form slavery in Texas. Congressman Al Edwards made Juneteenth a state holiday which is now being recognized nationwide. RBHY, U of H, HCC, the Urban League Guild, area churches, SBNG, and Houston Archaeological Society members donated over 300 volunteer hours to provide a variety of activities for visitors from far and near. Activities included:

*Hands-on archaeology at the Yates House for kids of all ages. Young children learned to screen artifacts, were given "Junior Archaeology Steward"certificates.

*Lectures by the Buffalo Soldiers, historians, archaeologists, and a poet were held at three neighborhood churches.

*1900's wallpaper style hand printing demonstrations by Suzanne Manns, Dean of Faculty at Glassel School of Art.

*Art exhibitions by Charles Criner and Mosheh Adamu including a John Biggers' Print)

*Antique dolls loaned by Betty Taylor Thompson, antique chairs, and a tricycle exhibit by Dr. Sarah Trotty, Celia Anderson, and Catherine Roberts.

*A raffle of Gift Baskets, plants and toys, book sales, music, and more?

*St. James United Methodist Church and Mt. Horeb Missionary Baptist Church provided delicious grilled burgers, hot dogs, salads, and cold drinks made possible, in part, by a generous donation by Fiesta Market.

* New Zion Temple Missionary Church hosted a film series, as well as, Tiffany Gilbert's "Praise and Grace" dancers. Mt. Horeb also provided shuttle transport to and from the various venues.