By Kati Weis

DENVER (CBS4) – Events will be happening all weekend long in Denver to celebrate Juneteenth, the day celebrated as the end of slavery in the United States. Friday’s kick-off concert at Levitt Pavilion at Ruby Hill had some fans emotional, thinking about what the event really stood for.

(credit: CBS)

At the intersection of the end of a year-long quarantine and the holiday finally being nationally recognized as a federal holiday, fans were overjoyed to be able to come together to celebrate black culture.

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“I’ve got chill bumps,” said Tiffany Rollerson, a fan at the Juneteenth R&B Summer Kick-Off concert. “It just feels good to be around my people, have some good entertainment, and just be able to relax.”

For concertgoers Philip and Tarsha Turner, who were visiting Denver from Miami, celebrating Juneteenth during the first year it’s nationally recognized meant everything.

(credit: CBS)

“I’m just grateful to be able to celebrate culture, without limitations,” Tarsha said.

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Her husband agreed, saying the concert was a great way to reflect on what the Juneteenth weekend is all about: freedom for all.

“It’s a celebration of liberty and independence,” Philip said. “There’s still a lot of work to be done, but keep the faith, keep fighting, and keep hope.”

The concert’s headliner was Grammy-winning R&B group 112, notable for their hit 2001 single “Peaches and Cream.” The concert also featured local Colorado artists KDJ, Grand Alliance, and Rachel Bailey.

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(credit: CBS)

Don’t want to miss out on the fun? Here’s a list of all the Juneteenth events this weekend: https://denver.cbslocal.com/2021/06/16/guide-denvers-juneteenth-celebrations/.

Kati Weis