Houston Forward Times

25 June 2014 Written by  Tyrone Willis

Houston Buzz

Juneteenth Celebrations Including Honorable Al Edwards in Galveston, Texas

Kicked off the weekend with a bang starting with Juneteenth Celebrations - What is Juneteenth? First observed in 1865, Juneteenth is the oldest nationwide celebration of the end of slavery in the United States.  There are festivals held annually on the nineteenth of June by African-Americans, to commemorate emancipation from slavery in Texas on that day in 1865.  It is considered by many to be the “African American Emancipation Day.”  


Other known names for Juneteenth are “Freedom Day” or “Emancipation Day”. On 19 June 1865, Union General Gordon Granger and his troops arrived in Galveston, Texas to enforce the new freedoms granted to former slaves by the signing of President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation in 1863. The celebration of June 19 as emancipation day spread from Texas to the neighboring states of Louisiana, Arkansas, and Oklahoma.  House Bill No. 1016 passed in the 66th Legislature, Regular Session, declared June 19, “Emancipation Day in Texas,”  a legal state holiday effective January 1, 1980.


Today, Juneteenth is promoted not only as a commemoration of African-Americans freedom, but as an example and encouragement of self-development and respect for all cultures. Houston’s Buzz was able to be part of several Juneteenth celebrations around the city that included joining the Honorable Al Edwards at the 35th Annual Emancipation Proclamation Reading and Prayer Breakfast as the Emancipation Proclamation was read to commemorate the historic event that occurred in Galveston on June 19, 1865, two years after the proclamation was enacted. Galveston holds the distinction of being the place of the first reading of the Proclamation in the South. 


One-In-A-Million sponsored a Juneteenth celebration at the Buffalo Soldiers Museum where Captain Paul Matthews, Monica Fontenot-Poindexter, and Vince Ryan were in attendance. 


Juneteenth celebration ended with a Juneteenth Parade sponsored by State Representative Sylvester Turner. Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee were among many who participated in the parade.




Houston Area Urban League Annual Gala full of surprises including a magic show!


The Houston Area Urban League - Bzzz.. The Houston Area Urban League, founded in 1968, has been a voice for poor and disadvantaged people of all races and has a long and distinguished record as an agency that offers tangible, lasting benefits to all members of the community without regard to age, sex, race, physical limitations, or ethnic background. It is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit, community-based United Way agency, affiliated with the National Urban League. Plenty of buzz at this year’s 46 Annual Equal Opportunity Day Gala at the Hilton-Americas Hotel where celebrating magic of delivering help today and hope for tomorrow was this year’s theme. Ballroom was filled to capacity that included Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee & Dr. Elwyn Lee, Mr. Cary Yates & Judge Clarese Yates, Mr. & Mrs. John Hofmeister, Judson Robinson III,  John Stanford, Judy Foston, Bryce Kennard, Karen Carter-Richards, & Liliane Bedford. The evening was filled with magic tricks and surprises by Magician Robert Strong. Mr. John Hofmeister received the Margaret Ross Barnett Leadership Award for his extraordinary leadership in the community. KPRC –Local 2 Khambrel Marshall & CourtneyGilmore served as program emcees.Thanks to all who sponsored this years gala and Congratulations to all those who were honored at this year’s Houston Area Urban League Equal Opportunity Day Gala.




Texas Black Expo


Texas Black Expo is a non-profit organization that empowers Texas Small-Business Owners and entrepreneurs by providing them with knowledge and resources needed to succeed in an evolving marketplace.


The Texas Black Expo (TBE) has been a pillar of the African-American community as a year-round, multifaceted community service organization with affiliate chapters around the state.  TBE is known for its two major events, the Houston Black Expo (for Summer Celebration) and its monthly Lunch and Learn business development seminars. 


TBE mission is to foster business growth and development, educate and expose youths to the world of entrepreneurship, and provide events designed to inform, economically empower and establish the local community.  Their specialties are:  Marketing to minority markets, small business consulting, tradeshow marketing.


On June 20, 2014, TBE will host the largest African-American empowerment festival in Texas, called “Coffee & Conversation,” a business empowerment breakfast and roundtable.  This conversation will begin at 7:30 a.m. at the Four Seasons Hotel, 1300 Lamar Street.  TBE is partnering with Houston Area Urban League (HAUL) and Greater Houston Black Chamber of Commerce (GHBC) for the event that will feature Jeff Hoffman as the keynote speaker. Forward Times were happy to join all things concerning Texas Black Expo that included kids performances, presentation by AARP, a luncheon at the Four Season’s Hotel featuring Texas State Senator Wendy Davis candidate for governor for the state of Texas and many other exciting things. 


For more information, visit texasblackexpo.com, or @TexasBlackExpo on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.




The Beat Got Sicka...


Houston’s Buzz of the Forward Times joined 93.7 The Beat & jammed all evening with incredible performances at BBVA Concert that included many artists such as Houston’s own Slim-Thug, Paul Wall, Z-RO, Future, J-Cole, Kendrick Lamar, Trae The Truth, Meek Mill, Trey Songz, & others.





MAA WereReady