Juneteenth Tradition in Clover Park Celebrates the End of Slavery in U.S.
Marina del Rey Argonaut (Marina del Rey, CA)
June 17, 2005
Juneteenth is the unofficial holiday that marks the end of slavery in the United States. More specifically, it stems from the message Union General Gordon Granger relayed to slaves on June 19th, 1865 in Galveston, Texas, that the Civil War had ended and that slaves were now free.
The 13th annual Santa Monica Juneteenth Celebration is co-produced by the City of Santa Monica, the Santa Monica Juneteenth Celebration Committee, Inc. and the Pico Neighborhood Association.
The theme of this year's event is "Healing the Legacy of Slavery."
One of the featured entertainers this year is African-American folk storyteller Ellaraino, who tells tales, legends, history and personal stories and will perform on the event's spoken word and sound stage. Ellaraino performs at universities and cultural events and hosted The Fox Cubhouse television show on the Fox network.
Ellaraino says she seeks to carry on the African griot tradition. Griots are members of west African tribes responsible for carrying on oral history and entertaining through storytelling, poetry, songs and dancing.
"As I think back, I realize my love for the ancient art of storytelling began long ago as I listened to my family tell how things used to be," says Ellaraino. "I have so many wonderful memories of countless stories told by my father, mother and great-grandmother," she says.
Ellaraino is the official storyteller of Allensworth State Historic Park. Allensworth was California's first town founded and funded by African-Americans in 1908.
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