MO, IL State Offices Closed for Juneteenth; Local Celebration Sat.
Missouri state offices will be closed Friday to commemorate Juneteenth, which has been designated as federal holiday.
The Missouri Office of Administration announced the changes on Thursday, after President Joe Biden signed a federal law recognizing Juneteenth.
The new holiday commemorates July 19, 1865, when freed slaves in Galveston, Texas, learned the Civil War was over and they were free — two months after the Confederacy had surrendered.
Illinois government offices will be closed Friday in a nod to a new federal law, making Juneteenth an official holiday.
The announcement Thursday by Gov. J.B. Pritzker supersedes state law signed Wednesday by the governor that would have made June 19 a state holiday next year.
Because the day falls on Sunday in 2022, the first paid state holiday would have occurred in 2023.
Juneteenth marks the 1865 date when the last enslaved Black people learned from Union soldiers in Texas that they were free. That was more than two years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed.
Juneteenth is the first federal holiday since the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday was created in 1983.
Meanwhile, Jim's Journey will once again be hosting a Juneteenth celebration in Central Park in Hannibal Saturday.
Activities get underway with a Juneteenth commemorative caravan at noon, followed by a performance of The Beat Arts Academy at 2, with food, fun, family activities, including inflatables and bingo throughout the day.
There will also be an interactive art project led by Douglass Community Services' Kids in Motion.
The theme for this year's Hannibal celebration is, "United in Hope."