News Release: Annual Eiteljorg Juneteenth and Jazz Community Celebration Returns June 15

Celebrate Juneteenth with live music, performances, activities and more; admission is FREE

The Rob Dixon Quartet is scheduled to perform at the Juneteenth and Jazz Community Celebration,
June 15 at the Eiteljorg Museum; the event has free admission.

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Tuesday, June 4, 2024

INDIANAPOLIS – The Eiteljorg Museum’s 9th annual Juneteenth and Jazz Community Celebration returns Saturday, June 15. Admission is free that day, and events include jazz performances by Cassius Goens Quartet and the Rob Dixon Quartet, as well as poetry readings, storytelling, art-making activities and more. The Eiteljorg will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. June 15 with FREE admission.

“It’s wonderful what the Juneteenth holiday has become across the country. With the help of numerous community partners, the Eiteljorg Museum hosted its first Juneteenth Community Celebration in 2015 on the 150th anniversary of Juneteenth,” said Kathryn Haigh, Eiteljorg president and CEO. “Our free celebration has developed over the years to include a focus on cultural and musical performances. Back in 2015, we were one of a few local Juneteenth events, and now we are part of what has become a larger city-wide celebration.”

The Eiteljorg is also partnering with Indy Juneteenth to host an Indy Juneteenth Art Gallery inside the museum. Juneteenth festivities begin at 11 a.m. June 15 with a welcome from community activist, influencer and college professor Dr. Tammy L. Cooper, member of the Eiteljorg Community Board of Advisors. In addition to jazz music, other performances include “Str8 Up Frederick Douglass” by Asante Art Institute, SITEAW Drum Circle and poetry readings by Patrice Stokes. Most performances will take place on the museum’s outdoor stage under The Sails with some being indoors. In case of inclement weather, all performances will be moved indoors.

Visitors can enjoy family-friendly activities such as creating Juneteenth buttons and designing paper fans. Johanna M. Blume, curator of Western art, history and culture, will lead a gallery tour at 10:30 a.m. June 15 about African Americans in the West. The Eiteljorg’s volunteer Guides will be in the galleries discussing artwork in current exhibitions throughout the day. Other nearby celebrations include the neighboring Indiana State Museum, as well as Indy Juneteenth in Military Park.

For a full schedule of performers and a list of additional Juneteenth resources, visit

Community activist, influencer and college professor Tammy L. Cooper, Ph.D., will speak at the Juneteenth and Jazz Community Celebration, June 15 at the Eiteljorg Museum.

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“The history of Juneteenth unites the Eiteljorg community, family and friends to celebrate history and freedom. The Eiteljorg Museum is committed to honoring the importance of Juneteenth,” Cooper said. “Juneteenth recognizes the abolition of slavery in the United States – specifically, Juneteenth celebrates the ending of slavery in the last state, in Galveston, Texas, in June of 1865. We will celebrate and honor all those who fought for freedom and liberation. I am honored to celebrate Juneteenth at the Eiteljorg Museum.”

June 14 – other Juneteenth-related programming; 2-5 p.m.: The day before the free celebration, in conjunction with the Center for the Study of Religion and American Culture Conference, Eiteljorg visitors can join panelists and conference attendees on Friday June 14 for events related to Juneteenth and African-American religious expressions:

  • At 2 p.m. Friday June 14, visitors can attend a lecture and Q-and-A with Dr. Keri L. Day of Princeton Theological Seminary on the connection between Juneteenth and religion.
  • At 3 p.m., enjoy a concert by the Freetown Village Singers, who perform traditional folk songs and spirituals and preserve African American traditions and culture through storytelling and song.
  • At 4 p.m. is a roundtable conversation with local scholars. Attendees also will have an opportunity to explore the powerful and thought-provoking exhibition Acts of Faith: Religion and the American West.

The June 14 programing is included with paid museum admission.

 About the Eiteljorg
For 35 years, the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art has been an integral part of the cultural fabric of Indianapolis and scenic White River State Park. The Eiteljorg Museum explores the intersection of the arts, histories and cultures of the past and present by sharing the diverse stories of the American West and the Indigenous Peoples of North America. Located on the Central Canal at 500 West Washington St., the Eiteljorg is a 501c3 nonprofit organization.


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