Mayor Greg Fischer, Metro Councilwoman Barbara Sexton Smith, sculptor Ed Hamilton, Jecorey ‘1200’ Arthur, and WDC President David Karem today announced plans for Juneteenth Jubilee, a public celebration of the 10-year anniversary of the Lincoln Memorial at Waterfront Park. The event will take place on June 19, 2019, from 7:30-9:15 p.m.
The 2019 Juneteenth Jubilee will begin at 2nd and Main on the KFC Yum! Center Plaza with a community gathering in remembrance of the thousands of enslaved Africans sold at this site in the 1800s. Grand Marshal Ed Hamilton and the River City Drum Corp will lead participants through Downtown Louisville in a march for freedom to Waterfront Park. At the Lincoln Memorial, sculpted by Hamilton a decade ago, a sunset performance will celebrate freedom, featuring guest speakers reading excerpts of the Emancipation Proclamation embellished by artistic responses from Jason Clayborn and the Atmosphere Changers. Other performances will include the River City Drum Corp, the Lanita Rocknettes, AMPED, and many more.
The public is invited to gather at the KFC Yum! Center Plaza at 7:30 p.m. The celebratory march, a distance of approximately 1 mile, will begin promptly at 8:00 p.m., and the celebration at the Lincoln Memorial will begin at 8:30 p.m. and conclude with a beautiful sunset over the Ohio River.
This first community-wide Juneteenth Jubilee commemorates the final communication of the abolition of slavery in the United States on June 19, 1865. June 19th is “Juneteenth National Freedom Day” in Kentucky, in honor and reflection of the significant roles that African Americans have played in the history of the United States. This will be the first annual Juneteenth Jubilee celebration at the Lincoln Memorial at Waterfront Park.
Concessions will be available for purchase during the Lincoln Memorial portion of the event.
Details will be added to the Juneteenth Jubilee calendar listing on the Waterfront Park website as they are confirmed.
About the Lincoln Memorial at Waterfront Park
The Lincoln Memorial was unveiled in 2009 as part of the two-year national celebration of the bicentennial of Lincoln’s birth. The memorial features a 12′ statue of Lincoln seated on a rock and looking out over the river. Four bas reliefs (stone sculpture made by chipping away from a flat surface to make a picture that stands out) illustrate scenes that represent stories of Lincoln’s life-long ties to Kentucky.
Nationally renowned Louisville artist Ed Hamilton created both the Lincoln statue and the bas reliefs. Hamilton also sculpted the “Spirit of Freedom,” a Washington DC memorial honoring African American troops of the Civil War.
The memorial site is a tree-canopied landscape with an amphitheater that faces the river and provides a frame for the sculptural pieces. The face of the granite amphitheater seating is engraved with four famous Lincoln quotes, and the site is planted with a variety of trees, including several that were Lincoln favorites.
The memorial is free to the public and is open year-round during Park hours, 6:00 a.m. through 11:00 p.m. daily.