The sunset reflects on Peyton Scott Russell’s “Icon of a Revolution” mural on Friday, March 12, 2021 after week one of jury selection in the trial of Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd. Credit: Ben Hovland | Sahan Journal

Exactly three years after the murder of George Floyd, the Rise and Remember 2023 celebration returns to Minneapolis for three days, May 25–27. The event focuses on memorializing George Floyd and continuing to pursue racial justice. 

Rise and Remember will include a two-day conference, a candlelight vigil, a gala, and a festival. Community members and visitors can attend most of these events for free. The lineup of events will be hosted by The George Floyd Global Memorial, a nonprofit that curates spaces for people to grieve, pay their respects, and promote racial justice; and the community of George Floyd Square, at 38th and Chicago. This year’s theme is “Ubuntu: Make the Impossible, Possible”—with the South African word “ubuntu” describing a philosophical connection between the individual and the community.  

“The third year is when people tend to forget; the third year is the year where people start to get tired,” said Jeanelle Austin, executive director of George Floyd Global Memorial. “So we wanted to remind the people that we are in this work of justice together.”

George Floyd Global Memorial event details

  • Candlelight vigil on May 25: Join Thursday’s candlelight vigil to light a candle in solidarity and stand with others in remembrance of George Floyd. The Minnesota Orchestra will perform a segment of Brea(d)th, an original piece by composer Carlos Simon and librettist Marc Bamuthi Joseph, which debuted last week. Before writing the choral work, Simon and Joseph made a pilgrimage to the memorial site. The vigil performance will signify the story “coming home to its birthplace,” Austin said.
    • Date and time: 8–10 p.m. May 25
    • Location: George Floyd Square, East 38th St. & Chicago Ave. S. Minneapolis.
    • Cost: free to attend. 
  • Rise & Remember 2023’s first racial justice conference: For two days, join changemakers to network, learn from panelists, and attend sessions at the inaugural racial justice conference to be hosted by the George Floyd Global Memorial. Session topics include racial healing, building power through large coalitions, and storytelling. 

Austin sees this conference as a next step in transforming the state. “In 2020, there were a lot of promises made by different corporations,” Austin said. “Now we’re saying, ‘How do we continue to keep moving forward in the work of racial justice in all the areas of health, wealth, and power?’”  

  • Dates and times: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., May 25; 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. May 26. 
  • Location: Best Buy Headquarters at 7601 Penn Ave. S. Minneapolis.
  • Where to find parking: 7799 Knox Ave. S., Richfield.
  • Cost: Attendees are encouraged to pay what they can afford. 
  • George Floyd Global Memorial Gala: The gala provides a dining experience curated by chefs Sean Sherman (Owamni) and Mecca Bos. Keynote speaker Nbada Mandela is an author, political consultant, and the grandson of Nelson Mandela. There will also be live performances, including from South African choir 29:11, and Jamecia Bennett (a vocalist for the Grammy Award-winning group Sounds of Blackness).
    • Date and time: 6–11 p.m. May 26
    • Location: Paisley Park, 7801 Audubon Rd., Chanhassen
    • Cost: Ticket prices start at $195.
  • Rise & Remember 2023 Festival and Concert: This self-care fair will include food vendors and live performances, in recognition of community members who came together to create George Floyd Square.
    • Date and time: noon to 8 p.m. May 27
    • Location: George Floyd Square, East 38th St. & Chicago Ave. S. Minneapolis
    • Cost: free to attend. 
  • “Voices of the Unheard” art exhibit: The George Floyd Global Memorial collaborated with more than 120 youth in local schools to put together this exhibit, Austin said.
    • Date and time: The exhibit is open from May 25 to August 19.
    • Location: Chicago Avenue Fire Art Center, located inside George Floyd Square.
    • Cost: free to attend.

More ways to get involved

  • Volunteer opportunities every Tuesday: Help care for and preserve the memorial: the art, flowers, and offerings that hold the space in George Floyd Square. 
  • Make a pilgrimage: George Floyd Global Memorial welcomes visitors to experience the memorial with a community guide, and reflect on pursuing racial justice in their own lives.
  • Donate: Support the organization’s goal to build a permanent national memorial to remember and tell the stories of all stolen lives. 

Three years after the murder of George Floyd, The Rise & Remember Festival returns to 38th Street and Chicago Avenue, in Minneapolis. The three-day memorial event (May 25-27, 2023) will focus on the community’s pursuit of racial justice and equity. For more information please go to: #georgefloyd

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Katelyn Vue is the housing reporter for Sahan Journal. She graduated in May 2022 from the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. Prior to joining Sahan Journal, she was a metro reporting intern at the Star...

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