Though Juneteenth is still days away, events celebrating Black freedom kick off Wednesday and last through the next week in and around Boston.
Embrace Boston is hosting an inaugural Juneteenth concert that starts at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday on the Boston Common, where the nonprofit oversees its memorial honoring Martin Luther King Jr., and his wife, Coretta Scott King.
The 1.5-hour concert features the Embrace Choir and other city groups, setting “the celebratory tone for us as we honor the national holiday and historical importance of Juneteenth.”
The federal holiday commemorates the emancipation of enslaved African Americans.
On Thursday, Embrace Boston is offering panels, keynotes, dancing and music centered around racial equity, healing, wellbeing, and joy at Massachusetts College of Art and Design, with registration beginning at 10 a.m.
Embrace Boston’s three-day celebration concludes Friday, culminating in a block party at Roxbury Community College. Grammy-nominated producer Just Blaze is headline the event, commemorating 50 years of hip hop.
The music-filled weekend continues Saturday, when the Boston Landmarks Orchestra hosts a free concert at the Salvation Army’s Kroc Community Center in Dorchester at 4 p.m. The show includes pieces from Scott Joplin, William Grant Still, Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson and more.
Remembering those who endured slavery and seized freedom on Cambridge’s Brattle Street before the American Revolution will be the focus of a Sunday afternoon outdoor community gathering put on by the National Park Service at Longfellow House-Washington’s Headquarters.
The event, beginning at 4 p.m., will feature music, poetry, speeches and a screening of Descendant, an award-winning film that highlights the descendants of the survivors from the Clotida, the last-known slave ship to arrive in the U.S.
On Juneteenth, Monday, the Boston Juneteenth Committee is hosting its 13th annual Emancipation observance at the National Center of Afro American Artists, at 4 p.m. That follows a 12 p.m. flag-raising at the Dillaway-Thomas House on Roxbury Street and 1 p.m. parade to the NCAAA.
The Congregational Library & Archives celebrates the holiday by holding a three-day exhibition of the Sacred Ally Quilt Ministry at its Boston location, 14 Beacon St. The exhibit includes nearly a dozen quilts memorializing the final words of George Floyd.