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Packers to close operations Friday to commemorate Juneteenth

Richard Ryman
Green Bay Press-Gazette

GREEN BAY – The Green Bay Packers will close their operations on Friday in observation of Juneteenth, which marks the end of slavery in the United States.

It will be an annual observance, the Packers said.

"The Packers will be observing Juneteenth and taking the opportunity to reflect on our own roles and opportunities to further our awareness of racial injustices and inequities and what we can do to affect positive change in our communities," Packers President and CEO Mark Murphy said in a release.

Currently, only the Packers Pro Shop is open to the public. It reopened on Monday after having been closed since mid-March in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Packers offices reopened in a limited way at the end of May. 

Juneteenth commemorates June 19, 1865, when Union soldiers landed at Galveston, Texas, with the news that the Civil War had ended and that the enslaved were free. 

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The NFL league office, as well at the Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Arizona Cardinals and Baltimore Ravens announced this week they would permanently recognize Juneteenth.

Also Wednesday, Democratic Gov. Tony Evers announced the Juneteenth flag will be raised over the Wisconsin State Capitol for the first time in state history beginning at sunrise Friday.  

The bowl of Lambeau Field glows blue from the video boards, which thanked frontline workers during the coronavirus pandemic as part of the #LightItBlue campaign on April 9, 2020, in Green Bay, Wis.

The flag commemorating the end of slavery in the United States will fly over the Capitol’s East Wing, replacing for a day the rainbow Pride Flag recognizing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender pride. 

The U.S. flag and Wisconsin state flag will continue flying on the East Wing flagpole above the Juneteenth flag. The POW-MIA flag will continue flying on the North Wing flagpole, as it does every day.

Contact Richard Ryman at (920) 431-8342 or rryman@gannett.com. Follow him on Twitter at @RichRymanPG, on Instagram at @rrymanPG or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/RichardRymanPG/