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The Kilgore Juneteenth Parade makes its way down Main Street Saturday, June 15, 2019. The parade wound through downtown Kilgore and stopped at Kilgore City Park for food, music and presentations.

A “Together We Stand” Juneteenth Unity Day celebration is set for Saturday, June 19, at the Kilgore City Park band shell. The event will include live music in a “Coming Together” concert, entertainment and a parade.

Harry Caldwell, of Longview, spoke about the event to city council members at last Tuesday’s meeting.

He said he’d taken it upon himself to arrange the celebration after last year’s Juneteenth “Coming Together” concert was cancelled. This year’s event will tie together a parade with live performances.

“I got some sponsors through Grace Baptist Church, they’re going to perform as well. We have some folks from New York, some groups out of Houston and also some surrounding areas, like Tyler and Longview, for the Juneteenth celebration,” he said.

The parade will start promptly at 12 p.m. June 19 at 401 E. Main St. and will end at the city park, where there will be free food, vendors and entertainment.

Caldwell said he hoped for the event to unite people in Kilgore, of all backgrounds and beliefs, to positively benefit the community overall.

“What we’re talking about now is coming together. We’re trying to get away from that one hour on Sunday that’s the most segregated hour in the country, all across our country. In your church, our church, no one is getting together to actually do anything. Let’s change that. We need to flip that model so we can get everybody involved.”

He said the event management had raised nearly all the money needed for the event, but was still seeking about $1,300 in sponsorships.

The concert will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. at the City Park band shell, following the festivities and the parade.

For more information, contact Jody Clements at (903) 646-0300 or Victor Boyd at (903) 576-5313.

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