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Where to Celebrate Juneteenth in Los Angeles, 2023 Edition

Where to commemorate the Juneteenth holiday, from barbecues to block parties, live music, and workshops

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MLK Kingdom Day Parade Photo by David Crane/MediaNews Group/Los Angeles Daily News via Getty Images
Mona Holmes is a reporter for Eater Los Angeles and a regular contributor to KCRW radio. She has covered restaurants, dining, and food culture since 2016. In 2022, the James Beard Foundation nominated her for a Jonathan Gold Local Voice Award.

Juneteenth not only became a federal holiday in 2021, but the Los Angeles City Council also voted last week that June 19 is an official day off for city workers. Juneteenth commemorates the emancipation of enslaved African Americans, and specifically observes when the news reached Galveston, Texas, more than two years after President Abraham Lincoln issued an executive order “that all persons held as slaves” within the rebellious states “are, and henceforward shall be free.”

Throughout the Southland, cities and municipalities have celebrated Juneteenth for decades. Below is a guide on where to participate in and celebrate Juneteenth — also known as Freedom Day or Emancipation Day — in Los Angeles with live music, bike rides through historic Los Angeles neighborhoods, and more. Many places will offer food and drink specials from Saturday until Monday, and beyond.

Friday, June 16

Juneteenth at a cookware shop in Venice

Saturday, June 17

  • The City of Hawthorne will host its Juneteenth celebration this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Holly Park: 2058 W. 120th St. in Hawthorne. It’s a family-friendly event with food trucks and music.
  • Culver City’s Juneteenth Celebration and Resource Fair on June 17 includes professional dancers, drummers, and a Black business expo lined with food trucks from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Santa Monica will host its 31st annual Juneteenth Celebration in Santa Monica on Saturday at Virginia Avenue Park with live jazz, soul, blues and reggae performances with food and local vendors selling their wares from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Sunday, June 18

Monday, June 19

  • Every year Leimert Park celebrates its Juneteenth Festival on the actual holiday. This year, it’ll run from noon to 9 p.m. in the historic Leimert Park Village. The festival will showcase 300 Black-owned businesses, three stages, two DJs stages, a spoken word stage, and food vendors stationed throughout, including the Afrocentric restaurant, Two Hommés. If taking the Metro, head to the Martin Luther King Station near Crenshaw and MLK Boulevard.

Monday, June 26

  • At Alta in West Adams, chefs Miles Thompson and Keith Corbin will prepare a four-course dinner with wine pairings from Adams Wine Shop for $80 per person. Get a seat via Resy.