BLYTHEVILLE, AR (KAIT) - Blytheville's Second Annual Juneteenth Celebration begins Friday night.
Juneteenth marks the date when slaves found out slavery was abolished in the United States, two years after the emancipation proclamation was signed by President Abraham Lincoln.
The theme of this year's event is "Access to Information is the Key to Freedom."
Desmond Hammett, chairman of the Blytheville Juneteenth Committee, said this year's event will showcase the services available to area residents, as well as the local talent and vendors in Mississippi County.
"We want to take this time to celebrate the positive things and attributes that we have contributed to modern day society," Hammett said. "This is something we can build on. The Juneteenth celebration is roughly one day but the positive contributions can be felt for generations to come, the awareness of knowing where some people can get services and help to make them a better person and to highlight the positive things that are going on in our community."
Hammett said this event is open to all residents of Mississippi County and surrounding areas.
Friday's celebrations kick off with a sweet potato contest and youth oratorical contest.
For more information on Friday's event, call Irene Aldridge at 870-740-2054
On Saturday, a parade will begin at 9 a.m. at the old Sav A Lot grocery store on West Main Street in Blytheville.
The event will wrap up with a big celebration featuring a dress the decade contest, vendors, information booths and more.
The celebration will be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on McHaney and Elm street in Blytheville.
For more information on Saturday's events, call Michelle Sims at 501-301-4266.
Copyright 2016 KAIT. All rights reserved.