By Ivy Richter

Community members gathered at Newport City Hall on June 19 in honor of Juneteenth, a national day marking the end of slavery. People of all ages spoke about the day’s history, read poems and celebrated with vegetarian soul food and homemade hibiscus tea.

The event was organized by Sankofa Community Connection, a nonprofit driven by building “pride of place” for the Black community in Newport through community gatherings, discussion on racial issues and historic education.

Prior to the event, Sankofa board members and Mayor Jaime Bova gathered to read Sankofa’s proclamation, which officially recognized Juneteenth as a holiday in Newport.

“It just felt really good to see the flag at City Hall and it just showed the progress we’re making,” said Gabby Brown, a 15-year-old Newport high school student who spoke at the event. “Even though it’s something small, it just shows we’re actually making progress.”

Newport historically had a 25 percent Black population, according to Niko Merritt, Sankofa executive director. Today, it is hovering around 6 percent. (Read More)


Juneteenth Vegetarian Soul Food


Vegetarian kale and collard greens by Latisha Michel with red beans and rice by Ellen Pinnock and yams and cornbread by Ms. Pauline.

Hibiscus flower tea by Niko Merritt
(Dried hibiscus flowers, cinnamon stick, allspice, limes and hint of sugar)

Shout out to the kitchen volunteer crew Nycole Marvelous, Steven Heath , Chris Gross, Michael, Dorothy, Gianna.


Juneteenth Event Continues Awareness | Newport Now

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