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Creative Arts Showcase – Announcement & Details


The City of Bloomington Human Relations Commission in partnership with the McLean County History Museum and the Bloomington Normal Black History Project invite students to participate in the 2021 Juneteenth Creative Arts Showcase.   We are excited to offer an opportunity for our students to express themselves through their creative talent and help tell the story of the resistance, recognition, and reclamation of African American history. 


What is Juneteenth?  

it was on June 19th, 1865 when Union soldiers, led by Major General Gordon Granger, arrived in Galveston, Texas with news that the war had ended and that the enslaved were now free.  This delayed notice was two and a half years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation - which had become official January 1, 1863. 


Who can participate in the 2021 Juneteenth Creative Arts Showcase:    All Elementary, Junior High, and High School students can participate, and their entries will be judged based on the 3 age group categories.  


Why should students enter?   It is more important than ever to engage, reach and teach our children, and empower our community to embrace the history of black people in America as we all grow, heal, and enrich our diverse and inclusive community.   Plus, Students’ can earn a cash award if selected.  Also, during the week of the 2021 Juneteenth Celebration, the entrants and winners will be showcased during our virtually hosted events scheduled from June 14th – June 19th!   


What is required to enter?   

Students are invited to enter any original work and express the creativity of their choice that represents a historical event or topic in African American history, which is aligned to our Juneteenth theme, “Justice Delayed” and our host of topics that will be covered through the week.   


  • Example topics may include: Emancipation Proclamation, Destruction of Black Wall Street, the Civil Rights passage, Voting suppression, Dred Scott Laws, etc.   

  • The Artistic submission can be a poem, essay, drawing, a song, dance, even a sculpture.   We encourage the students to be creative and expressive. 


How to enter?  By April 30th, complete the form located on our website:, and upload your artistic creation or talent.  All entrants will be announced during the virtual events, scheduled June 14th - June 19th. 


How can our schools, administration, teachers, and community help us?  

  1. Please share this opportunity with your organization's students and their families, refer them to our website to complete their submission,  Also, consider sharing on your website and social media.  Attached is a flier for distribution.  

  2. Save the Date!  Join us at our hosted virtual daily events that will begin on Monday June 14th, continuing daily, through our finale event scheduled on Saturday June 19th, Juneteenth.  

 For more information:  Please refer to our website:  For questions contact Jeff Woodard, McLean County Historical Society, Director of Marketing & Community Relations, (309)827-0428; or Willie Halbert, program chair, (309)287-1954.

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