The state of Texas announced the abolition of slavery on June 19, 1865. Why this date isn’t a national, everybody-gets-off-work holiday is beyond me, but Juneteenth, which commemorates the emancipation of the last remaining slaves in the United States, should be celebrated by all races, creeds and colors as one of the most significant dates in this country’s evolution. The Elegba Folklore Society will kick off a four-day commemoration of Freedom Day on Thursday, June 19, with a performance by South African singer Lira at the Hippodrome Theater. Other events include speakers, markets, music, food, workshops and activities across the city so that those who don’t know their history can’t doom the rest of us to repeat it. Call 644-3900 or visit efsinc.org.