11 Juneteenth Party Ideas for an Empowered Celebration

Spend time with family, enjoy delicious food, and celebrate Juneteenth with these thoughtful party ideas.

Published June 5, 2023
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Juneteenth, first celebrated in Texas, marks the emancipation of enslaved people in 1865, three years after the Emancipation Proclamation of 1862. June 19th is now a national holiday celebrating when freedom finally reached everyone, including those still enslaved in the confederate south. These Juneteenth party ideas will help you commemorate this important day with family and friends. Authentic foods, educational activities, and creative party settings help you celebrate Juneteenth with empowerment.

Host a Juneteenth Cookout

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Anytime you can find a reason to host a summer cookout, you should definitely jump at the opportunity. What better thing to celebrate than freedom? Invite your family and friends over for a Juneteenth cookout, complete with your favorite grilled goodies and some time spent enjoying the fresh air and sunshine.

Pack a Park Picnic

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If you want to celebrate outdoors but you're looking for a spin on the traditional summer cookout, a Juneteenth-themed park picnic is the way to go. Pack up your favorite authentic foods - maybe some Texas-inspired recipes - and spend the day lounging on the lawn and playing tons of picnic games with your loved ones.

Plan a Low-Country Celebration

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Celebrate freedom, culture, and your community with a low-country blowout celebration. Serve traditional low-country foods like red rice, fried cabbage, and potatoes. If you're planning for a large enough crowd, live music and the best food trucks in your local area will make this celebration feel like a real low-country festival.

Go All In on Juneteenth Decor

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It's not a party without tons of decor. Spare no creative spark with your Juneteenth party decor and wow your guests with all the layers of your decorations. Be sure to snap tons of photos in front of your decorations to commemorate this special event.

Make Your Own Juneteenth Confetti Poppers

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This is a fun way to teach your kids about Juneteenth and all the reasons it's worthy of celebration. Make your Juneteenth confetti poppers to match your decor and add to the excitement of the day. Kids might get a kick out of making them, but everyone will love using them during the celebration.

Craft Your Own Juneteenth Flags

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Here's a fun craft to include in your Juneteenth party activities. These easy Juneteenth flags made with popsicle sticks are super fun for kids to make and even double as party favors or table setting decor. You could make one for each guest and include their name somewhere on the front. Let it rest on their place setting or stash it in a party favor bag with other treats.

Serve Traditional Hibiscus Tea

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Sweet and floral notes stand out in this traditional tea recipe. We love this authentic Hibiscus tea recipe and love that it's preceded by an in-depth history on the Juneteenth holiday even more. Serve this refreshing treat in pitchers or garnished glasses with ice.

Make Strawberry Soda

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Whether it's a cookout, a picnic, or just a small gathering of friends, strawberry soda is a refreshing treat for your Juneteenth celebration. Sweet and summery, this recipe includes an original version and an adult cocktail upgrade. If you're really loving the strawberry drinks, you might include some other summer strawberry mocktails at your party.

Slice Into Red Velvet Cake

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Did you know red velvet cake is a traditional dessert from the 1800s often served in celebration of Juneteenth? It's a must for your own Juneteenth party, and there's a lot of significance to the red color of the sweet treat. For Juneteenth, red foods symbolize life and resilience, as well as honor the bloodshed and the lives of ancestors who lived in pre-emancipation times.

Make Traditional Southern Recipes

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Since Juneteenth was first celebrated in Texas and celebrates the freedom of enslaved people living in the confederate South, a few traditional southern dishes are a great way to honor this special day. Look to your family members for dishes and recipes that were handed down through generations. If you need a few ideas, these dishes are popular on Juneteenth.

Order Juneteenth Cookies

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Whether you need to add some extra flair to your dessert table or offer guests a sweet parting gift, these Juneteenth cookies are a beautiful addition to your celebration. Display them with your desserts on a tray or tier, or add them to your Juneteenth goodie bags for an extra thoughtful touch.

Celebrate With Joy & Love

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No matter how you decide to celebrate or what you choose to serve at the affair, a Juneteenth party is about being with the ones you love and honoring those who endured the times before freedom was reality. Celebrate with joy on this day and look for every opportunity to hug one another, laugh together, and enjoy the beautiful parts of life.

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11 Juneteenth Party Ideas for an Empowered Celebration