News Release

University of Minnesota presents 2nd annual Juneteenth celebration and commemorative march: The Art of Freedom

Image from the inaugural U of M Juneteenth Celebration in 2022. Credit: King Nemuel Visuals/Nemuel Sereti
Image from the inaugural U of M Juneteenth Celebration in 2022. Credit: King Nemuel Visuals/Nemuel Sereti

Honoring Black joy, resistance and rest

MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL (06/06/23) – On Saturday, June 17, the University of Minnesota will host its 2nd Annual U of M Juneteenth celebration from noon to 6 p.m. in North Minneapolis.

This free block party and commemorative march — centering on the theme of The Art of Freedom: Joy. Resistance. Rest. — will feature Black vendors, speakers, workshops, poster showcases, storytellers, musicians, performers, DJs, roller skating, books, free food, free haircuts, art-making, a petting zoo, a bouncy house and more. The event will begin with a commemorative march at noon from the University’s Robert J. Jones Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center at 2001 Plymouth Ave. N., where the outdoor block party will take place from 1 to 6 p.m. Registration for Juneteenth celebration workshops is recommended.

Speakers include Makeda Zulu, Brandyn Lee Tulloch, Terresa MosesJeff Aguy. And performers and musicians include iLLism, Ntsang, Tarli, The Black Velvet Punks, The Lioness, Tish Jones of TruArtsSpeaks, DJ McShellen, DJ Miss Brit, emceed by Joseph "Juice" Sutton! Food vendors include Nashville Coop, Jambo Africa, Quiet Cat Bakery, Run Tell That BBQ, Stuff'd Food Truck, and MN Nice Cream.

Visit for a complete list of vendors, performers and activities. 

Vice President for Equity and Diversity Mercedes Ramírez Fernández said, “At the University of Minnesota, the Juneteenth celebration has been supported by the entire U of M system. Everyone – our leaders, our academic units, our administrative units – has supported this. Our tremendous event organizer has pulled together an amazing group of people. This is an effort that has united many communities because we recognize the importance of Black liberation, regardless of our individual identities. We are supporting this event in joy. In preparing for this event, there is excitement and anticipation throughout our campus communities. As we plan for the second annual Juneteenth celebration, U of M is backing up our words that we are committed to advance a community and culture where a sense of belonging is strong, accessibility is valued, and equity and diversity are promoted.”

“The event will be centered around the art of freedom in the Black experience,” said event director Terresa Moses, assistant professor and director of Design Justice in the College of Design. “This year we will celebrate Juneteenth and Black futurity by uplifting the nuance and intersectionality of the Black experience — being one filled with joy, resistance and rest. We want to create a space that supports the various identities in the Black community including various Black genders, sexualities, abilities, economic statuses, educational levels — those whose identities are the most marginalized of us. We will begin with a commemorative march for Black lives, a rose memorial and a moment of silence. We will then move into live performances, giveaways, art-making, workshops, roller skating and a very engaging interactive kids zone.” 

This event is presented by the University of Minnesota College of Design, the Office for Equity and Diversity, the Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost, the Office of the President, and the Robert J. Jones Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center. 

U of M Juneteenth celebration partners include Blackbird Revolt, Black Garnet Books, Black Trust Fund, the Breast Cancer Champions, Compassionate Action for Animals, DanSan Creatives, Gamma Tau Chapter, Imagine Deliver, Iota Phi Lambda Sorority, Inc., Pollen Midwest, Public Functionary, Swag LLC, and Twin City Skaters. University of Minnesota Celebration partners include the Black Faculty & Staff Association, the Black Student Union, the Bell Museum, the Carlson School Center for Inclusive Excellence, the Child Development Laboratory School, the College of Continuing and Professional Studies, the Department of Pediatrics, the Earl E. Bakken Center for Spirituality and Healing, the Extension African American Affinity Group, the Integrative Health and Wellbeing Research Program, the Institute for Social Research and Data Innovation, the Masonic Cancer Center, the Office for Student Affairs, the Office of Undergraduate Education in the College of Liberal Arts, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Program, the School of Dentistry, and the School of Nursing. Links to our partner organizations can be found on the Juneteenth celebration website.

Download 2023 Juneteenth event print material and digital media assets.