Celebrate Juneteenth With These Events in Asheville

Juneteenth

Juneteenth is a time for celebration in Asheville as the community gathers to reflect on the end of American slavery 159 years ago and the work for equality that continues today.

The Martin Luther King, Jr. Association of Asheville/Buncombe County and the City of Asheville host a weeklong Juneteenth celebration. This celebration, featuring educational and festive events, is a testament to our shared commitment to honor and remember the past while striving for a more inclusive future.

Honoring the Legacy of Civil Rights Workers

When: June 17 at 12-1:30 p.m. (lunch included)

Where: Linwood Crump Shiloh Center

This free event will explore the story of three civil rights workers, James Cheney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner, who were abducted and murdered in the summer of 1964.

First African American Families of Asheville and Buncombe County

When: June 18 at 12-1:30 p.m. (lunch included)

Where: Dr. Wesley Grant Center

Learn about the history of Asheville’s first African American families and their impact on the growth and prosperity of our town.

Distinguished Speaker Presentation & Reception: “From Slavery to Juneteenth Jubilee”

When: June 19 at 12-2 p.m.

Where: Black Wall Street AVL

Enjoy an impactful and uplifting afternoon of music and history with acclaimed singer, educator, and historian Mary D. Williams. Ms. Williams’ music blends traditional gospel songs with slave spirituals to tell the story of the American South and the Civil Rights movement.

Reflections on Gentrification of the African American Neighborhoods

When: June 20 at 12-1:30 p.m. (lunch included)

Where: Burton Street Recreation Center

A lesson in gentrification and its effect on African American neighborhoods in Asheville and nationwide.

Juneteenth Gala

When: 7-9:30 p.m.

Where: Stephens-Lee Center

This ‘tie or no-tie’ gala will be free and open to the public. It will commemorate Juneteenth by featuring catered appetizers, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, a live band with dancing, and an African-attire fashion show.

Early African American Health Care & Today’s African American Inequities

When: June 21 at 12-1:30 p.m. (lunch included)

Where: Temple-Avery Montford Center

How has health care changed for African Americans? This session aims to answer that question and more.

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Asheville's Black Cultural Heritage Trail officially opened to the public on December 15, 2023, allowing travelers and locals to connect with the city's rich Black history. From well-known figures like Nina Simone, who attended boarding school in Asheville (her nearby childhood home will soon be open to the public), to community landmarks like the YMI Cultural Center, one of the oldest Black community centers in America, to everyday citizens like William R. “Seabron” Saxon, who refused to give up his bus seat four years before Rosa Parks, the Asheville Black Cultural Heritage Trail unearths intimate and fascinating stories of dignity, struggle and resilience. The trail comprises 14 stops and 20 panels across three historically significant Black neighborhoods. You can experience all the digital content here.

Updated June 17, 2024