Residents observe Juneteenth


The Madison County community gathered on the square Saturday morning for the 31st annual Juneteenth parade.

Led by Madisonville Police Chief Herbert Gilbert, the parade included horseback riders, bicyclists, vehicles and floats. It departed from Lake Madison and ended up at the Juneteenth Center on Seventh Street, where a free lunch was served.

“We celebrate freedom today: joy, freedom and love. That’s what the world needs today,” said Brenda Nellums, who served as master of ceremonies for the parade. “Love yourself, but most of all, love everyone else.”

Organizer Ethel Burns said the gathering is a “community event,” and it had the feel of a family reunion as groups grilled food and caught up with old friends and relatives.

“We are celebrating emancipation,” Burns said.