California Red Tails to Fly Over Allensworth for Juneteenth Celebration

12 Jun

Juneteenth ImageColonel Allensworth State Historical Park is the only California town to be founded, financed and governed by African Americans.  On June 14, from 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m., Friends of Allensworth will host its annual Juneteenth celebration.

When: Saturday, June 14, 2014

Time: 10:00 am to 4:00 pm

Where: Colonel Allensworth State Historic Park

Juneteenth is the oldest known celebration of the ending of slavery. It was on June 19th, that the Union soldiers, led by Major General Gordon Granger, landed at Galveston, Texas with news that the war had ended and that all slaves were now free. This was two and a half years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, which had become official on January 1, 1863. This day is celebrated by African Americans in honor of their ancestors who received notice of being set free from slavery on June 19, 1865.

There will be great entertainment, great speakers and, of course, fabulous free tours of the historic buildings, given by the Friends of Allensworth docents for your educational enrichment.

This year there will be a special treat.  The California Redtails will participate in a fly-over at Allensworth State Park.  The pilots will meet at Delano Municipal Airport for a pre-flight briefing and depart for the state parCalifornia Redtailsk known as the first Black township in California.  Ten private airplanes from throughout California; Hayward, Watsonville, Compton, Whiteman, Cable, and Hawthorne will descend on the Delano Municipal Airport. They will receive a short safety briefing and pre-flight review, then remount their planes and taxi to runway 32. After receiving clearance from the tower they will takeoff one after the other and head north.

Upon receiving the signal from the ground crew, the pilots will turn south, then lineup in a formation. The lead pilot gives the command “Tighten Up, Straighten Up and Fly Right” and the formation drops down to 1,000 ft as they fly over the Juneteenth celebration at Colonel Allensworth State Historic Park.

Colonel Allensworth

Colonel Allensworth

The pilots are members of the California Red Tails, one of fourteen Black Pilots of America chapters. The Black Pilots of America is a non-profit flying organization that encourages under privileged youth to enter the field of aviation. The California Redtails are named after 332nd fighter group, the African American fighter pilots that escorted bombers during World War Two. They are better known as the Tuskegee Airmen because they were trained at Tuskegee, Alabama.

The campground at Colonel Allensworth State Historic Park is named after Tuskegee Airmen Lieutenant Colonel John “Mr. Death” L. Whitehead, Jr., who served in World War Two, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War.

For more information or to request a vendor application contact Friends of Allensworth President Thomas Stratton at 530-949-2168 or info@friendsofallensworth.org.

For more information, visit http://www.friendsofallensworth.com/index.html , blogforallensworth.blogspot.com , http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=583 and to download a flyer, click here:  Red Tails Flyer for 2014 Juneteenth Celebration at Allensworth.

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