Third annual Juneteenth Jubilee announces headliners

By Staff Report, posted 2 months ago
Graphic provided by CSDD

On behalf of the City of Fayetteville, Cool Spring Downtown District (CSDD) is pleased to announce the return of the third annual Juneteenth Jubilee: Their Wildest Dreams. 

The Juneteenth Jubilee will kick off in the heart of downtown on Saturday June 15, 2024, with a full-day celebration in Festival Park (335 Ray Avenue) from 1:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. featuring nationally touring headliners, local performance acts, food trucks, small-businesses and corporate vendors, artists/artisans, history, games and other entertainment for the whole family. 

The opening headliner for the event is two-time Grammy nominated Pierce Freelon. Freelon’s music blends hip-hop, electronic jazz and soul. His modern and dynamic sound is inspired by his journey as a millennial dad and is carefully crafted for today’s modern families. Through honest and playful lyrics, rich melodies and fresh beats, he shares his story and welcomes kids and adults to his world. 

Pierce’s critically acclaimed work has been featured on the TODAY Show, NPR, Billboard, Rolling Stone, Parents Magazine and the PBS Kids animated series’ Alma’s Way and Work it Out Wombats! He founded Blackspace, a digital maker space offering teens free programming rooted in Afrofuturism. He is also the co-creator and talent of the PBS Kids podcast “Jamming on the Job” and has written two children's picture books with Little Brown. 

The marquee headliner this year is Skip Marley. The maternal grandson of Bob Marley, Skip Marley is part of the legendary reggae family that also includes his mother, Cedella, and uncles Ziggy, Stephen and Damian Marley, yet his own sound adds touches of contemporary pop, rap and rock forms. Skip is a self-taught musician who first performed at the age of 15, when his uncle Stephen prompted him to sing the chorus of "One Love" on-stage. In 2016, Skip debuted on the family's Island-distributed Tuff Gong label with the ballad "Cry to Me." After he signed with Island Records proper, he debuted on the label with the pop-oriented anthem "Lions." A week later, Katy Perry released "Chained to the Rhythm," a collaboration with Skip, and the two performed it at the 59th Annual Grammy Awards. The single quickly became a Top Ten pop hit in several countries. 

Skip spent the next three years developing his sound with dynamic tracks like "Calm Down" and "Refugee,” as well as 2019 collaborations with his uncle Damien ("That's Not True") and H.E.R. ("Slow Down"). In 2020, Skip enlisted Rick Ross and Ari Lennox for the track "Make Me Feel," which was included in his debut EP, Higher Place, which was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album. That same year, Skip was also nominated for an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding New Artist. 

The City of Fayetteville is the title sponsor of the Juneteenth Jubilee. In 2021, when Juneteenth was made a federal holiday, the City voted to make it an official holiday, as well as contract with CSDD to curate a new celebration here in Downtown Fayetteville. 

“[The] Juneteenth event is about commemorating a pivotal moment in history; and affirming our commitment to diversity, equality and community,” said City of Fayetteville Mayor Mitch Colvin in a press release. “It’s an opportunity for us to reflect on our past, celebrate progress and unite in our ongoing journey towards a more inclusive and equitable future.” 

CSDD’s Director of Special Projects, Ashanti Bennett, shared the inspiration for this year’s event theme in a press release: “When I first started thinking about this year’s Jubilee, the phrase ‘we are our ancestors’ wildest dreams’ kept catching in my head. I look around at the accomplishments of Black Americans across the country and the globe, not to mention the inspiring excellence right here in Fayetteville, the barriers that we continue to break, the leadership and advancement of the culture, and the joy we continue to express even in the face of turmoil. I can’t help but reflect on the wonder and pride that our ancestors would feel if they could see us now. Current events both here and around the globe are so tumultuous; for this year’s celebration, we truly want to lean into a vibe of joy and uplifting positivity.” 

The Can-Do Coldwell Trolley will also return this year to offer festival-goers a chance to take an educational tour focused on the history of Juneteenth and Black history here in Fayetteville, curated in partnership with local historians from Fayetteville State University. 

The current list of confirmed Juneteenth Jubilee event sponsors includes ABC-11, Healy Wholesale Company, Inc., Beasley Media Group, and Cape Fear Valley Health System, with additional sponsorships pending. To learn more about becoming a Juneteenth Jubilee sponsor, please email Bianca Shoneman, CSDD President/CEO at 

One of CSDD’s stated objectives with Juneteenth Jubilee is to showcase Black culture through Black artists, performers, and Black-owned small businesses. For additional information or vendor application links, visit CSDD's website at 

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