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The Juneteenth Unity Walk occurred on Saturday with the purpose of educating the public on the history behind Juneteenth and uniting the community with love. Above, the Juneteenth Foundation is pictured leading the unity walk through the Dunbar Historic Neighborhood. Below, Pastor James Jacobs led the opening prayer before the walk.
Daily Record photos by Shannon West

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Top, Minister Craig Hudson, with the Greater Bethel Baptist Church, greeted the crowd before the walk and gave insight into the history behind the holiday. Bottom, Randolph Goodman poses with San Marcos Police Corporal Jesse Saavedra.
Daily Record photos by Shannon West


Annual walk brings community together
Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Annual walk brings community together

The community celebrates Juneteenth annually by taking a walk through the Dunbar Historic neighborhood starting at the intersection of MLK Drive and LBJ Drive and ending at the Willie Mae Mitchell Center, where the Juneteenth BBQ Cook-off was taking place. This year, a nice breeze took the edge off the heat, free chicken from Gus’ Fried Chicken gave walkers a pre-walk protein snack and free sausage wraps made by the San Marcos Police Department made for the perfect finish line treat.

“[We’ve had] four amazing years of showing not just the city of San Marcos, not just the state of Texas, but the world that this is what unity looks like,” said Greater Bethel Baptist Church Minister Craig Hudson. “So what better way to show unity on this grand holiday than with a unity walk showing our love for one another?”

Hudson gave a bit of insight into the history behind the holiday and the importance of celebrating it today. He said July 4, 1776 was the nation’s Independence Day, but not everyone was freed on that day. Freedom came for enslaved people almost a century later on June 19, 1865.

“The apostle Paul said it like this, ‘I can do all these wonderful things, but if I don’t have love for my brother and sister, I have done nothing,’” Hudson said. “So you can do wonderful things. We all can. But if we don’t love one another, we have done nothing. If we don’t teach our children to love one another, we have done nothing. If we don’t teach our children that you’ve got to love everybody, no matter their social background, their race, their culture [and] their creed. If we don’t learn to love one another, we won’t make it. So that’s what this unity walk is about, walking together [and] loving one another.”

Hays County Constable David Peterson, Juneteenth Foundation board chairman, said it’s important to unite the people of Hays County through the unity walk and to pass the history of Juneteenth down to younger generations.

“Some people don’t know anything about Juneteenth,” Peterson said. “[The unity walk] is about teaching our kids about history. It’s all about history.”

At the end of the walk, Hudson started a group dialogue about how to create unity among the community.

“How do we continue to grow events like this [and] to bring awareness that … not every city is divided, that we can come together for a common goal, for a common cause,” Hudson said. “Today, we celebrate the end of what was known as a dark time for our nation. But we also celebrate. Not only did it end, but it opened up a realm of possibility.”

The crowd shouted words that embodied what they thought of as unity: inclusiveness, diversity, love and no fear.

“We don’t have to fear one another,” Hudson said. “We don’t have to fear our law enforcement. Again, thank y’all for making sure we were staying safe and for joining us on this road.”

Learn more about the Juneteenth Foundation and its festivities at this link: smtxjuneteenth. com.

San Marcos Record

(512) 392-2458
P.O. Box 1109, San Marcos, TX 78666