Juneteenth, the newly recognized federal holiday commemorating the emancipation of enslaved African Americans in 1865, is a time to celebrate Black history and contributions on the East End.
The Hamptons has a rich Black history dating back to the era of slavery. Sag Harbor now has a thriving Black community and had one of four known U.S. beaches that allowed Black people to swim.
Here are some Juneteenth celebrations that highlight the inspiring and powerful history of Black people in the Hamptons and North Fork.
Recognize Juneteenth on the East End
Southampton African American Museum Annual Juneteenth Celebration
Friday, June 17, 6–8 p.m., Saturday, June 18, noon–5 p.m., 245 North Sea Road, Southampton
Featuring Keynote Speaker A’Lelia Bundles, author of On Her Own Ground and great-great-granddaughter of CJ Walker; a flute performance from Dwayne Kerr; Stephen Sylvester & Rum Punch Mafia; and Halo Vocal Ensemble with additional discussion “Race and Real Talk.”
Black Women in Media Juneteenth: Celebration of Liberation
Sunday, June 19, 5–10 p.m., Southampton
Award ceremony honoring Brenda Simmons, Dr. Georgette Grier-Key and Robin Brown. With Black-owned shopping, beachside performances, open bar and exclusive tour of Southampton African American Museum. RSVP via Eventbrite.
Sylvester Manor on Shelter Island — Juneteenth Observations
Saturday, June 18, noon–1:30 p.m., 80 North Ferry Road, Shelter Island
A 90-minute history walking tour about the enslaved and free people of color at Sylvester Manor. Free admission. Attendees are encouraged to bring and leave tributes at the Burial Ground in commemoration. Not recommended for children under 12. No pets allowed.
Riverhead Library Juneteenth Celebration
Saturday, June 18, 1–2:30 p.m., 330 Court Street, Riverhead
Music, refreshments and a guest speaker.
Film: Juneteenth Tribute to the Heroes of Black Music
Friday, June 17, 8–9 p.m., Suffolk Theater, 118 East Main Street, Riverhead
Rare footage featuring performances of the most iconic Black musicians of all time.