The founder of Santa Monica’s Juneteenth Festival, Laverne Ross describes when the festival was founded and conversations in the city during that time. Juneteeth festivals mark the end of slavery, news that arrived in Texas, the first site of these festivals, on June 19, 1885. Ross describes it as an “American holiday because everyone has been touched by slavery.” The first event was held in 1992, and brought 700-800 people. It was a like family picnic, but also spiritual reflection about the past and where the community is today. Ross creates a parallel with the mystical African bird Sankofa, which flies with the egg of the future in his beak, while looking into the past.