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Check it Out: Library to celebrate Juneteenth

The James V. Brown Library, 19 E. Fourth St., will be part of the community-wide Juneteenth celebration in Williamsport, which takes place June 19 in Brandon Park.

To promote the event, the week before the celebration the library will host a series of videos created by Lycoming College students projected throughout the day in the Rotunda, along with book displays about Juneteenth and books written by Black authors. The videos will be on display from noon to 2 p.m., June 12, in the Library’s Rotunda.

Students in Lycoming College’s Digital Storytelling First Year Seminar, taught by Lynn Estomin of the art department and Amy Rogers of the education department, partnered with community members to create a series of digital stories about the people and history of the local Black community. The premiere screening was held on April 27, 2016.

Student partners were Kaitlin Adams, Kyra Beltrandi, Sophia Davis, Ryan Donofry, Bob Elias, Janiece Gonzalez, Jen Grove, Kelsea Kenniff, Sam Lamport, Jake Lewis, Perla Licona-Vazquez, Cali Miller, Billie Strickler and Chris Sniscak.

Community partners were Tonya Anderson, Sam Belle, Marie Brown, Lucille Evans, Emily Gale, Velna Grimes, Vanessa Hunter, Linda Jackson, Richard James, Shaheed James, Marguerite Royal, Spencer Sweeting Janice Todd and Jeremiah Washington.

For more information about the event, visit https://calendar.jvbrown.edu/home/event/16984/community-wide-juneteenth-celebration.

Juneteenth is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States. Dating back to 1865, it was on June 19 that the Union soldiers, led by Major General Gordon Granger, landed at Galveston, Texas, with news that the war had ended and that the enslaved were now free. It is intended to be a day of joy, celebration, and recommitment to the values of freedom and building a good community for all.

The Juneteenth event in Williamsport is hosted by the Lycoming Tri-County NAACP group along with Transitional Living Centers and the Williamsport YWCA and other community organizations. The event will start at 9 a.m. June 19, starting at Freedom Road Cemetery and proceeding after a Peace Walk down the road to Brandon Park with celebration there from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information about that event, visit https://naacptricounty.wordpress.com/2021/05/06/juneteenth-celebrating-who-we-are/.

— The library supports the PA Forward statewide initiative, which believes that when Pennsylvania residents improve their command of five types of literacy — basic, information, civic and social, health and financial — they can achieve greater success as students, parents, employees, consumers, as citizens. Libraries are community centers of information, technology and learning that will fuel educational and economic opportunity for all of our citizens.

For your safety, all returned materials are quarantined for three days.

The James V. Brown Library is open for browsing and holds pick up from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday; and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. To place a hold, visit www.jvbrown.edu or call 570-326-0536 during the library’s operating hours. The James V. Brown Library, 19 E. Fourth St., Williamsport, Pa., is the place to go to learn, connect and grow. Founded in June 1907, the library champions the love of reading, opens new doors to lifelong learning, provides a haven to those who seek and ensures the preservation of public library services for future generations. The library has more than 225,000 visitors in a year and circulates a half-million items annually. A member of the Lycoming County Library System, the James V. Brown Library participates in PA Forward, a statewide initiative to promote literacies in our communities to power a better future for everyone.

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