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Springfield Juneteenth Jubilee Committee hosts Father’s Day brunch

Updated: Jun. 19, 2022 at 6:05 PM EDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) - Juneteenth and Father’s Day are on the same day this year, so the Juneteenth Jubilee Committee hosted a Father’s Day brunch in front of Springfield City Hall on Sunday.

“Not only is it Father’s Day, but it’s Juneteenth, which is a very special day for us as black men,” Springfield resident Michael Tuitt told us.

Tuitt enjoyed both Father’s Day and Juneteenth Sunday, as the Father’s Day brunch was geared toward black men and commemorating the emancipation of enslaved African Americans.

“I’ve been a father for a long time,” Tuitt said. “My eldest is 35, my youngest is 21. You don’t get paid for it, but sometimes you get paid with appreciation, and that’s good.”

The fathers were shown appreciation with food from mac and cheese to grits, waffles, and bacon.

Tuitt told us that he has also been celebrating Juneteenth for years.

“As a black man, Juneteenth is very big, and my father and people in my family celebrated it for a while before it became big like this,” he said.

At the Juneteenth Father’s Day brunch, we asked the fathers what it means to them that Juneteenth and Father’s Day are on the exact same day.

“For it to be on Father’s Day, that’s actually special, too,” said Dwight Bell of Springfield. “To actually be a father, to be present in your children’s lives.”

“It’s about time that we are really starting to really recognize Juneteenth and what it means, not just as a father, ‘cause you have mothers who are also fathers who are also holding it down, as well,” Keith Peters of Springfield added.

Springfield City Councilor Tracye Whitfield, along with the Juneteenth Jubilee Committee, put on the Juneteenth events in Springfield, including Sunday’s brunch.

“I just hope the fathers and everyone in the community appreciates all the hard work that went into it,” Councilor Whitfield said.