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Get Ready for The 2023 Columbus County Juneteenth Festival!

“…it’s a part of the history of this place.
It’s not Black History; it’s everyone’s history!
-Shelle Blanks

The Columbus County Juneteenth Planning Committee is gearing up for it’s 4th year of celebrating the freedom, resilience and cultural contributions of African Americans; led by Community Organizer, Shelle Blanks. This will be the 2nd year that the festival will be held at the Columbus County Fairgrounds and the 4th year overall that Blanks and her team have organized to bring the community together for this annual observance.

The 2023 Schedule:
This year’s Juneteenth celebration is spread across 3 days at different locations in Whiteville, NC. View all the events in the CC Juneteenth Calendar.

• Friday, June 16th
The Miss Juneteenth Pageant will take place at 501 N. Madison Street(6pm).

• Saturday, June 17th
The Juneteenth Parade in Downtown Whiteville at 10am
Lunch on the Lawn at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences, following the parade.

• Monday, June 19th
The Juneteenth Festival will take place at The Columbus County Fairgrounds(12-6pm).

Vendors, Sponsors, Parade Participants and Pageant Contestants are asked to click the following link for Registration & Details »

Who & What to expect:

This year’s parade is set to feature Corvette, Bike and ATV clubs from across the state of North Carolina, The Cowboy Tar Heels Triple K Ranch, and dance teams all the from Atlanta, Georgia. The festival at the fairgrounds will offer attendees a black business expo, food and craft vendors, a ‘black farmers market’, music, performers, games (spades tournament and bingo) and an expanded kid’s zone with bouncy houses and other activities.

A notable addition to the festival is the cultural museum exhibit; with life-size figurines including Harriet Tubman and Columbus County’s own, Millie and Christine McKoy. Members of the McKoy family will be present at the festival as well.

An invitation to all!

When discussing the importance for all of Columbus County’s residents to attend and be engaged in this event, the festival’s founder and organizer says “…it’s a part of the history of this place. It’s not black history; it’s everyone’s history!” In addition to the fun activities, Shelle Blanks encourages all (African Americans as well all ethnic groups) to take advantage of this opportunity to be educated on the journey from the first Juneteenth to today. On the topic of history, Blanks says “The more awareness, the better we can become as a people and how we can move forward. When you understand history, you get a more in-depth understanding of where you are… and where you can go.”

For more information about the Columbus County Juneteenth Festival contact Shelle Blanks at 910.207.8982.

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