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ROCKY MOUNT — National recording artist Vivian Green will be the headlining act during the 2019 Juneteenth Community Empowerment Festival June 1 in downtown Rocky Mount.
Vivian Green has released six albums since her debut in 2003. She is known for hits including “Emotional Rollercoaster,” “Get Right Back to My Baby” and “I Don’t Know.”
She has worked with well-known artists including Jill Scott, Jewel, Raheem DeVaughn and Jazmine Sullivan. Green also is credited for writing a song for Boyz II Men.
Green will take the stage at 7 p.m. on Saturday, June 1, as the finale to a weekend full of fun and entertainment.
A full day of action begins at 11:45 a.m. on June 1 with the opening ceremony and bike rodeo.
Attendees will also learn about the significance of Juneteenth, a festival held annually to commemorate the announcement of the emancipation of slavery. The first public reading of the Emancipation Proclamation outlawing slavery in the US took place June 19, 1865 in Galveston, Texas, two years after Abraham Lincoln issued and enforced the proclamation in 1863. Therefore, Galveston was the first community to celebrate Juneteenth, and the celebration has now spread throughout the US.
Musical performances throughout the day include the Mark Green Gospel Group, Soul Jam and Marcus Anderson who played for Prince.
All artists will perform prior to Green.
Various dancing groups, Mr. Mime and the Tabernacle Church Choir will perform on the second stage throughout the day, while a Kente and Africa drum presentation, Buffalo Soldiers and a Jonkonnu dance group will perform in the main lobby of the Imperial Centre.
Bounce houses will be available for children.
“We are excited to celebrate this moment in history with our community, and we are looking forward to a great weekend of music, culture and fun,” Special Events Coordinator Kayla Hillman said.
Vendors will be available throughout the day. Parties interested in becoming a vendor for the event can apply at rockymountnc.gov and downtownrockymount.com/events/Juneteenth, or by calling 252-314-7030.