While Juneteenth celebrations date back to 1865, the day’s newly-minted national holiday status has given way to a whole new variety of celebrations that honor the contributions of Black Americans to our country.
Here’s all the ways that you can celebrate Juneteenth 2022 in Iowa this year:
Celebrate songs at the Singing Black Stories Showcase
The Des Moines Metro Opera is commemorating Juneteenth 2022 in its own music-infused way. The Singing Black Stories Showcase will act as a concert that brings together the talents of Black composers like Terence Blanchard, William Grant Still, Shawn Okpebholo, Nkeiru Okoye and more. The musical event will take place on Thursday, July 16, and RSVPs are required. For more information, visit www.forms.office.com.
Tee off at the Juneteenth Golf Outing
On Friday, June 17, Iowans have the chance to tee off in tribute of Juneteenth at Bright Grandview Golf Course’s Juneteenth Golf Outing. Beginning at 8 a.m., the golf tournament encourages community members to take to the course in celebration of the emancipation holiday. For more information, visit www.iowajuneteenth.com.
Marvel at Urban City Magazine’s Black Art Exhibit
Mainframe Studios will play host to one of Iowa’s buzziest art exhibition showcases—with unique work and curated art collections from local Black artists on display. Marvel at the creativity and craft of Black creators at this artistic event on Friday, June 17, from 5 to 10 p.m. For more information, visit www.iowajuneteenth.org.
Get reading at the Black’d Out Book Drive
Happening now through the end of June, Des Moines Art Center is hosting a Black’d Out Book Drive to commemorate the historical significance of Juneteenth, the power in Black literature and the need to increase access to these resources for the betterment of our society. Not only can locals donate works by Black authors to the drive, but they’ll also have the chance to browse a wide variety of new offerings from the Art Center, as well. For more information, visit www.desmoinesartcenter.org.
Celebrate big at the xBk Juneteenth Celebration
If you’re looking for the Juneteenth celebration to end all celebrations, then the xBk Juneteenth Celebration is definitely it. With everything from community wall painting and informative panel discussions to a comedy act by Aloe Mean, soulful tunes from Allen Juneau, the premiere of “Juneteenth: The Movement 2022” by Iowa PBS, and a DJ/dance party to cap it all off, this event really has it all. For more information, visit www.xbklive.com.