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Kingdom Day Parade Makes Delayed South LA Return On Juneteenth

Karen Bass sits on the back of a white convertible car wearing a light green suit, a purple shirt, and glasses next to Antonio Villaraigosa who wears a white polo shirt and dark pants.
L.A. Mayoral Candidate and Congresswoman Karen Bass, the parade's grand marshal, sits next to former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa during the King's Day Parade.
(Kyle Stokes
/
LAist)
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The Kingdom Day Parade is back in South L.A.

In 2021, it took a pandemic hiatus. This year, it was forced to be postponed from its typical date, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, because of rising COVID-19 numbers.

Monday, the event cashed its raincheck, returning just in time to celebrate Juneteenth. Attendees were glad to celebrate the shifted scheduling.

“I know why I'm here,” parade spectator George Herod said. “To support this thing — knowing what Juneteenth is all about. Knowing where my roots are, my root cause it wasn't in history books when I came up."

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June 19, 1865, marked the day that enslaved African Americans in Galveston, Texas. were informed of the Emancipation Proclamation. The decree came in the form of General Order No. 3, which stated: “all slaves are free.”

U.S. Representative Karen Bass — who will face businessman Rick Caruso on the November ballot to be the next Los Angeles mayor — was the parade’s grand marshal.

"This is just an incredible celebration,” Bass said. “The first time Juneteenth is a federal holiday, a holiday that African Americans have been celebrating for decades and it's nice now that the whole country is aware of what Juneteenth represents.”

Juneteenth was signed into law on June 17, 2021, by President Joe Biden. Monday is the observed date for most federal agencies.

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This is the first year the city of L.A. observed the holiday, which is now a paid day off for city employees.

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You have the power to keep local news strong for the coming months. Your financial support today keeps our reporters ready to meet the needs of our city. Thank you for investing in your community.