LAKE CITY, S.C. – The City of Lake City held its inaugural Juneteenth Festival June 16 – June 19. The four-day celebration recognizes the federal holiday commemorating events of June 19, 1865 when slavery finally ended.

  • The festival opened with a meet and greet at The Bean Market June 16 with vendor displays and local organizations providing information.
  • A black-tie gala was held inside The Continuum on Friday evening featuring food, drinks, and live music from Soulution.
  • Celebrations continued on Saturday with an all-day festival featuring a barbecue cook-off, food trucks, vendors, mini-esports tournaments, face painting and other fun activities. Three bands also performed during the festival: Kipp Taylor & The Nu Look, Touch Band, The Company Band.
  • Celebrations wrapped up Sunday at religious organizations.

Tail-Gater Hater won the $1,500 grand prize for winning the cook-off, Smoke Central won $750 for second, and Bottom Boys took home the $250 prize for third.

Several Lake City youths won small cash prizes during pop-up esports tournaments. Look for more tournaments to come soon.

“I’m so excited about hosting the first Juneteenth event in Lake City” said deputy administrator Jody Cooper. “I want the public to get involved in celebrating Juneteenth just like they would the Tobacco Festival or ArtFields. … there are so many things our small town has to offer.”

During the gala, Fahim Temple #266 of Lake City pledged $500 towards the city’s youth programs and Hubert McFadden donated a crisp $100 bill. McFadden challenged the community to match his donation to the programs. Dwayne “Duke” Buckner donated $50 towards the Lake City youth programs.

For details about next year’s Juneteenth Festival, visit lakecityscjuneteenth.com this fall. Juneteenth T-shirts are available for purchase at the city administration building.

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