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Juneteenth 2023 Ferris wheel lighting at the Santa Monica Pier

Published on June 13, 2023

The Santa Monica Pier Ferris Wheel will be lit green, gold, red, white, and blue on Monday, June 19 in recognition of Juneteenth.

Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day or Emancipation Day, is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the end of slavery in the United States. It is also called Emancipation Day or Jubilee Day in Texas. The holiday is celebrated on June 19, which is the anniversary of the announcement of General Order No. 3 by Union Army General Gordon Granger on June 19, 1865, proclaiming that all enslaved people in Texas were free. This came two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation had been issued by President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863.

Pacific Park will join other landmarks in lighting red, white, blue for this special occasion. The Pacific Wheel will also display colors of the Pan-african flag, red, green, and gold.

Juneteenth is a day of celebration and reflection for African Americans. It is a time to remember the long and difficult journey to freedom, and to celebrate the progress that has been made. It is also a time to recommit to the fight for equality and justice for all. Juneteenth is a time to come together and celebrate freedom and equality. It is a time to remember the past, and to work for a better future.

This special lighting event will take place on the evening of Monday, June 19. The Ferris wheel lights can be seen from dusk until 11:35 PM each evening. Enjoy watching the light program online at

Special Lighting of the Pacific Wheel for Juneteenth 2023

Monday, June 19
dusk (around 8 PM) to midnight

Pacific Park on the Santa Monica Pier


Juneteenth is celebrated in a variety of ways across the United States. Some people attend parades, festivals, and other public events. Others gather with family and friends for cookouts, barbecues, and other gatherings. Still others participate in educational and cultural events that focus on African American history and culture.

Pacific Park’s special lighting of the Pacific Wheel on Juneteeth includes a rendition of the Juneteenth flag, a symbol of the end of slavery in the United States. It was designed by Ben Haith, founder of the National Juneteenth Celebration Foundation, in 1997. The flag is red, white, and blue, with a bursting star in the center. The colors represent the blood, sweat, and tears of the enslaved people who fought for their freedom, as well as the hope and promise of a better future. The star represents the new beginning for African Americans after the end of slavery. The Juneteenth flag was first flown in 2000, and it has since become a popular symbol of Juneteenth celebrations across the United States. It is often flown alongside the American flag, as a reminder that Juneteenth is a day to celebrate the freedom and equality that all Americans enjoy.

Pacific Park regularly programs the Ferris wheel to display seasonal programing and themed light designs for holidays and special occasions. The Pacific Wheel’s state-of-the-art lighting package was installed in 2016 and can display over 1.6 million different colors and animate patterns and icons in 24 frames per second. The energy efficient LEDs on the face of the Ferris wheel are powered by solar arrays inside Pacific Park. The light programs are curated and designed by Pacific Park staff. Each design is manually animated; some designs can take hours of programming. The aim is to provide fun, high-energy, and sometimes whimsical designs to entertain guests on the Santa Monica Pier and surrounding beaches.


Feature image courtesy of @mr_selvin