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Rogue Valley Juneteenth Celebration Takes Shape As Oregon Declares A Holiday

Juneteenth Flag

June 19th, the date on which Union troops informed former slaves in Texas that they were free, long after the South surrendered. It is a day for a big celebration in Oregon as well as across the country.

Starting next year, Juneteenth will be a legal holiday in Oregon, thanks to a law passed unanimously in the Legislature.

BASE Southern Oregon (Black Alliance & Social Empowerment) observes Juneteenth this year with a gathering at Pear Blossom Park in the heart of Medford.

Jessica Freedman and Cassondra Smith from the organizing team talk about plans for the event, this year and in the future.

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The Jefferson Exchange is Jefferson Public Radio's daily news program focused on issues, people and events across Southern Oregon and Northern California. Angela Decker is the program's senior producer, Charlie Zimmermann is the assistant producer, and Geoffrey Riley hosts the show.