The nonprofit Black Scranton Project held its second annual Juneteenth Jubilee on Saturday at the organization’s new home in Providence Square.
This year’s Juneteenth Jubilee Block Party was held outside of the Black Scranton Project Center for Arts and Culture, a 1926 landmark former bank at 1902 N. Main Ave. donated last month to the organization by PNC Bank.
Large crowds turned out Saturday at the Black Scranton Project’s headquarters to celebrate Juneteenth, which two days earlier became a federal holiday with President Joe Biden’s signing of legislation.
Also held as a ribbon-cutting for the Black Scranton Project Center for Arts and Culture, the Juneteenth Jubilee Block Party was promoted as an opportunity for the community to come together in love, joy and solidarity with Black people and for fundraising for the center. Gaining the building is a big step for the Black Scranton Project, but more will be needed, said organization founder and CEO Glynis Johns.
“There’s a lot of people in the city that don’t believe that we deserve to have it and I’d love to change the narrative of that,” Johns said. “I would love to get more community support from the people that claim to support nonprofits and organizations like ours, because clearly we have this beautiful building that needs tons of support.”
On Juneteenth, Americans throughout the nation celebrated the 156th anniversary of the ending of slavery in the United States when Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1865, declaring slaves were free. Though Juneteenth was first celebrated in 1866, it largely had not been widely known until recently.
Check out our photos of the event in the gallery below.
A reporter for more than two decades, Jim Lockwood covers Scranton for The Times-Tribune, which he joined in 2011 after working at newspapers in New Jersey. His 2012 reporting of Scranton’s deepening financial crisis garnered him a statewide first-place award for news beat coverage in the Pennsylvania Newsmedia Association’s Keystone Press Awards. He also won the Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association’s Public Notice Journalism Award in multiple years plus national journalism awards from The Public Notice Resource Center, including a first-place win in 2015, and a second-place showing in 2017. Married with three children, Jim lives in Pike County. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or 570-348-9100, x5185.