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Mayor Sarno and Representative Williams Held Springfield’s Juneteenth Flag Raising and Celebration on Monday

|   City News

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and State Representative Bud Williams joined to co-host a special Juneteenth celebration on Monday afternoon with a flag raising ceremony at City Hall.  Following the flag raising ceremony, a special musical celebration took place at Springfield Symphony Hall with the Springfield Symphony Orchestra featuring powerful themes of freedom, hope and unity with the Springfield Symphony Chorus, Extended Family Choir and Avery Sharpe Quartet, with soloist Kevin Sharpe, Sofia Rivera, Heshima Moja, and the Golden Voice of Springfield Vanessa Ford.

It was a beautifully sunny day on the front steps of Springfield City Hall on Monday afternoon where Mayor Sarno and Representative Williams gathered with city and state officials, residents and our business community to raise the Juneteenth Flag at city hall and officially recognize Juneteenth in the City of Springfield. State Senators Adam Gomez and Jake Oliveira, State Representative Carlos Gonzalez, former State Representative Ben Swan, City Councilors Sean Curran and Malo Brown, School Committeewoman Barbara Gresham, Chief of Staff Tom Ashe, Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer Judi Crowell, Deputy Police Chief Larry Akers, Deputy Police Chief Rupert Daniels, Board of Police Commissioners member Cee Jackson, Springfield Cultural Council President Andrew Cade, Mayoral Aide Shenell Ford, Deputy Director for Governor Healey’s Western Mass Office LaMar Cook, Fire Department Chaplain Archbishop Timothy Paul Baymon, Springfield Symphony Orchestra President and CEO Paul Lambert, MGM Springfield CEO Chris Kelley, Springfield’s Miss Juneteenth 2023 Escateryka Watts, Jr., members of the Springfield Buffalo Soldiers motorcycle club, and The Brace Brigade, an African-Amerian Civil War re-enactor's group were all in attendance.

Mayor Sarno stated, “Representative Bud Williams and I are proud and honored to co-host the city of Springfield’s annual Juneteenth celebration with a special flag raising ceremony here at City Hall.  We are also proud to support our iconic Springfield Symphony Orchestra at Symphony Hall for a unique and powerful performance to celebrate this historic event.  It is important for us to recognize this significant part of our nation’s history and I was honored to be with former State Rep. Ben Swan, State Rep. Bud Williams and all the officials, residents, and members of our business community who came out to celebrate.  My administration has always supported this important occasion and I was proud to approve and support adding Juneteenth as an official paid holiday for the city of Springfield.”

Governor Charlie Baker approved the Juneteenth holiday across the state in 2020, which was championed and sponsored by Representative Williams.  President Joseph Biden signed into law a bill establishing Juneteenth as a federal holiday on June 17th, 2021.  The new Juneteenth holiday, which is observed annually on June 19th, marks the anniversary date of June 19, 1865, when Union Army General Gordon Granger announced General Order No. 3 in Galveston, Texas, news of the Emancipation Proclamation to the residents of Texas and freed all remaining enslaved people in the state.


Page last updated:  Tuesday, March 1, 2022 01:32 pm