Artists showcase Juneteenth artwork at Pasco library

PASCO, Wash. — The Tri-Cities Juneteenth Community Council is celebrating Juneteenth with several events this week. One of them is an art display at the Pasco Public Library.

Artists from all over Tri-Cities submitted their artwork to the exhibit with pieces showcasing what Juneteenth represents to them. 

One of the organizers of the exhibit, Charvella McGary, says the display is meant to celebrate Juneteenth and bring the community together. 

“Support Juneteenth. Come out and see what the council has put together for the community and see how you can be an ally,” McGary said. “Come and join and plan events year-round, [that] is what I’d like to get to. To be able to celebrate year-round. Not just Juneteenth but any and every event.”

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One of the artists, Shannon Witherspoon, created a large piece that’s displayed right as you walk into the library. It showcases significant members of the Black community throughout history, alongside some of the most prolific quotes they’ve shared. 

“It’s got basically just the people who made the path for everyone today,” Witherspoon said.

Witherspoon, along with other artists, will showcase their artwork at the Juneteenth celebrations in Kurtzman Park in Pasco on Saturday, June 18th. Witherspoon says her artwork showcases strong ethnic women in powerful poses, something she hopes gives confidence to her daughter and other girls in the community. 

“My husband is Black, my children are Black. My daughter actually was in one of the pageants, so I wanted to help her feel comfortable in her skin,” Witherspoon said. “She doesn’t identify, when you first look at her, as a Caucasian girl. So I wanted her to feel beautiful in her skin and her hair.”

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“So it helped me, you know, paint more of, you know, women, and darker-skinned and hair, and she loves it, she loves watching me paint,” Witherspoon said.

Artwork will continue to be displayed at the Pasco branch through Sunday, Juneteenth. The address is 1320 West Hopkins Street.

The Tri-Cities Juneteenth Community Council will continue its celebrations throughout the week.

On Friday, the Miss Juneteenth Pageant will take place at Chiawana High School in Pasco at 6 p.m.

On Saturday, a Juneteenth celebration will take place a Kurtzman Park in Pasco. The event will showcase informational booths, a kids’ area with inflatables and games, entertainment throughout the day, and an appearance by the Seahawks 12 Tour. Kurtzman Park is located at 221 South Wehe Avenue in Pasco, the event will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

On Sunday, a Gospel Celebration will be held at Kurtzman Park in Pasco at 2 p.m.