Arlington will be effectively replacing one holiday with another this year, following approval from Town Meeting on Monday, April 26.

National Indigenous People's Day will replace Columbus Day in Arlington, as the holiday will shift from honoring explorer Christopher Columbus, to reflecting on the lives, experiences and culture of Native Americans.

Juneteenth Independence Day, to be celebrated June 19, recognizes June 19, 1865, the day when slaves in Galveston, Texas, were made aware of the Emancipation Proclamation. The slaves in Galveston are conventionally believed to be the last slaves in the country to hear of the proclamation, made more than two years earlier. The holiday celebrates the end of formal enslavement of African-Americans.

National Indigenous People's Day is recognized in lieu of Columbus Day in 13 states. Massachusetts does not recognize the day but municipalities can elect to recognize it, with Cambridge adopting the practice in 2016 and Somerville following in 2018.

Juneteenth has been celebrated in African-American communities since 1866, but has grown in popularity across the country in recent years. Last year, Governor Charlie Baker signed a bill that would officially recognize June 19 as a state observed holiday.

The Select Board approved a resolution about National Indigenous People's Day in January, citing the struggle of Native Americans across the Americas since Columbus' arrival in 1492.

“Be it resolved that the Select Board votes to proclaim that the second Monday of October shall be commemorated as Indigenous People’s Day in Arlington, superseding local references to Columbus Day and in recognition of the position of Indigenous Peoples as native to these lands, and the suffering they faced during and since the European conquest,” the resolution stated.

The Arlington Human Rights Commission, which proposed the warrant article, have stated they want to organize some town events this October in connection with the holiday.

In the warrant, the Select Board noted the town is determining how the additional June 19 holiday would impact town employees, particularly employees that are involved in collective bargaining negotiations. In the future, June 19 is expected to be a traditional holiday where town offices and services may be closed.