Celebrate Juneteenth on Pennsylvania Avenue with PAEMS

Free Family Fun --and Chance to Write Your Vision for Penn Ave East on the Streets

Courtesy DC Office of Planning/PAEMS

Join Pennsylvania Avenue East Main Streeat (PAEMS) for Juneteenth and help imagine a revitalized Pennsylvania Avenue East.

The event takes place in two locations from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, June 19 at Soufside Market (2510 Pennsylvania Ave SE) and The Shops at Penn Branch (3200 Pennsylvania Ave. SE).

PAEMS Executive Director Latisha Atkins said the event is in part a response to requests from the community. Both PAEMS and the Office of Planning (OP) have heard from residents that they would like to see more public space activations such as pop-up markets, community events and other place-making activities where they can engage with each other, District officials and businesses. “This is kind of an answer to that request,” said Atkins. “We’re beginning to look at the public realm and ways we can use public realm to have people gather.”

But it’s also a way for people to come hang out, support local business and decide collectively what they want for the place they live. “We can no longer have the community sitting on the sideline as decisions are made about their community,” said Atkins.

Now is the opportunity for the community to set out its vision in a festival setting with vendors, music and activities for family and youth. At the black-owned Soufside Market, play Neighborhood Welcome Wheel, a game Atkins said was invented by the residents.

“It’s kind of a history game, looking at key events and places –like the Southeast white house– through out District history.” Visitors spin the wheel to get a question; if they get it right, they win a prize. They can also add ideas to the community dream wall and freeze memories in the photo booth.

Family activities can be found at The Shops at Penn Branchwith Positive Chalk DC, where kids can write their vision for the neighborhood literally on the streets. There will also be concessions with snacks, a DJ and putt-putt golfing with City Golf Adventures. “Children and families can come out and enjoy the day,” said Atkins.

The event is brought to you by Pennsylvania Avenue East Main Street (PAEMS), the DC Office of Planning (OP), the Marshall Heights Community Development Organization (MHCDO), Soufside Market, and Creative Junk Food.

Learn more about MHCDO and PAEMS by visiting mhcdo.org