VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – Juneteenth at the beach continues at The Oceanfront. The 3-day festival invites families out for a long list of activities. 

“We have the opportunity to make Virginia Beach one of the go-to destinations to celebrate Juneteenth,” said Micah Walls, the L.A.M.B.S. Foundation creative director. “There is so much history that, comes along with African American culture.”

The L.A.M.B.S foundation stands for Love All My Brothers and Sisters, and was started in 2011. The foundation was started after the loss of a close friend Cordaro “Lil Lamb” Simpkins, Walls said, who was a professional boxer here in Virginia.

“I think he [Cordaro] would be really happy,” Walls said. “His spirit is always with us. It’s just crazy how far we came.”

Walls said with the support from the city of Virginia Beach, T.E.A.M. L.A.M.B. was able to host the event for the third year.

“We actually got a sponsorship of $100,000 this year to help put this on,” Walls said. “We want to continue to keep growing and continue to partner with the City and make it bigger and better each year. Next year, we want to be on the sand! That’s our vision.”

The weekend of events is for the entire community.

“We provide a platform for local businesses, local emerging artists, brands and just people… it doesn’t matter what race, color, [or] creed you come from, just come together, celebrate this day,” Walls said.

The event is meant to help bring awareness to what Juneteenth stands for and experiences marginalized group of people have felt in the past, said Michele Naughton, the Norfolk Assistant Police Chief and National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE) Hampton Roads Virginia Chapter.

On Sunday, Virginia Beach Councilman Chris Taylor organized the first ever “Jubilee Run to Celebrate Juneteenth 5K and mile run” with the Tidewater Striders.

“I decided to do my first 5-K today and it was not as bad as I thought it [would be],” said Walls. “I feel awake, alive, ready to take on the day.”

On Wednesday, the 24th Street Stage will be packed again for a day of events starting at 11 a.m.

The NAACP kickoff is at 11:30 a.m. Later in the day, Black Brand will host a panel and pitch competition. 

“It’s an exciting time to celebrate Juneteenth,” said Dr. Eric Majette, Virginia Beach NAACP President. “Come down and have an opportunity to see all the vendors and the festivities that are going in Virginia Beach.”

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