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Tulsans support Black-owned businesses during Juneteenth celebrations

Posted at 10:06 PM, Jun 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-21 07:41:50-04

TULSA, Okla. — Juneteenth celebrations are underway in Greenwood this weekend.


It's a family affair for Itale Watie. She’s working at her family’s booth appropriately called “Our Family.” All of the goods are from her grandmother and great aunts.

“Everything is handmade," Watie said. "They’ve been embroidering stuff since I was young.”

Theirs is one of many booths lining Greenwood this weekend. From t-shirts to sunglasses to food trucks and more. These vendors encourage the community to come out and support Black-owned businesses.

“We support a lot of people that are outside of our community," said Melanie Rathod with the InCrowd Clothing Company. "And I feel like this is a big-time that we can like celebrate each other and support one another as we keep that Black dollar within our community.”

While this isn’t the first year for Juneteenth celebrations, it’s the first one since being recognized as a federal holiday.

“It's about time," said Cory Green, owner of Cajun Boil Catering Food Truck. "I mean, there’s 4th of July and then there’s Juneteenth. I think it’s just a long time coming.”

Watie said it’s important people recognize and understand the significance of the holiday.

“Juneteenth is our holiday where we were designated free," Watie said. "Not just living in a free country, yay July 4th. But that was their celebration. Our celebration is that our people were actually seen as human and seen as free.”

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