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Bergen County Announces Juneteenth Events

originally published: 06/12/2024

Bergen County Announces Juneteenth Events

(HACKENSACK, NJ) -- Bergen County Executive Jim Tedesco and the Board of County Commissioners announced the county's programming in celebration of Juneteenth.

The County’s Division of Cultural & Historic Affairs (DCHA) under the County’s Department of Parks will open County-owned historic site Gethsemane Cemetery in Little Ferry on Saturday, June 15, Wednesday, June 19, and Friday, June 21, from 12:00pm–4:00pm, to the public for self-guided tours. The cemetery which dates back to 1860, is a historic one-acre burial ground that served as the eternal resting place for African American who lived in Hackensack from the late 1800s to the early 1900s. Among those buried former slaves, wealthy landowners, and two Civil War veterans.

The County is also a presenting sponsor for two upcoming Juneteenth events which will also be open to the general public:

Saturday, June 15 at 12:00pm – Juneteenth Celebration hosted by the Bergen County NAACP in partnership with the County of Bergen – 199 Challenger Road, Overpeck County Park, Leonia

Wednesday, June 19 at 5:30pm – Juneteenth Celebration hosted by the County’s African American Advisory Committee – One Bergen County Plaza Administration Building Piazza, Hackensack, NJ 07073



 
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In addition, on Saturday, June 15 from 12:00pm to 3:30pm, Bergen County’s Division of Community Transportation will provide continuous shuttle transportation from Overpeck County Park to Gethsemane Cemetery to allow attendees to visit both events.

“Juneteenth marks a pivotal moment in our nation's history, celebrating the emancipation of enslaved African Americans,” said County Executive Jim Tedesco. “It's important to honor this milestone and recognize the contributions and resilience of the African American community here in Bergen County and across the nation. I'm proud that Bergen County hosts events and opens Gethsemane Cemetery to educate the public about often overlooked aspects of our history. Know that my administration is dedicated to fostering diversity, inclusivity, and understanding in our community.”

“Juneteenth serves as a significant reminder of our country’s progress towards freedom and equality for all,” said Bergen County Commissioner Mary Amoroso. “I am glad that the County is once again opening Gethsemane Cemetery to public which will allow for residents to get a deeper understanding of exactly what took place during the early days of our nation’s history.” 

The public can also access a recorded tour of Gethsemane Cemetery on the Bergen County website featuring historian Dr. Arnold Brown of Englewood, who was instrumental in saving this location. The Cemetery is owned by Bergen County, and available for private tours through the Division of Cultural & Historic Affairs.


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