Resiliency was unmistakable in the delivery of the Feb. 18 youth show, standing for 15 years of active, educational learning, involving youth through cooperative parents, community, and organizational support for a huge turnout by the audience.
The 15th Annual Youth Black History Reality Show – presented by the Youth Black History Reality Committee of the African American Cultural Society – increased knowledge of famous African-Americans, little-known Black history facts, and facts as the source of history in the making.
Emcee and high-school senior Donald Jamal Bryant introduced himself, sharing his plans to earn a baccalaureate degree from the University of Central Florida, a continuum of history in the making, as well as his future legacy.
From dancer to inventor
In addition, Mt. Calvary Baptist Church youth, were leaders in their own stories, each one set on becoming either a dancer like Michael Jackson or Misty Copeland, or former First Lady Michelle Obama, and adding on the aspirations of becoming a lawyer, police officer, or architect.
Engineer/inventor Dr. Lonnie Johnson has 80 patents and is the inventor of the Super Soaker water gun, as defined by Alex Harvey.
“If this is a great opportunity for us to learn about our history, why aren’t we being taught about our actual history?” inquired Stefany Ecklin, while re-enacting a classroom scene.
“What I Was Not Taught in School” was depicted by Ecklin and other members of the Boys & Girls Club. Among the others less known, this writer’s classmate, Dr. Patricia E. Bath, M.D., was cited as the “Laserphacoprobe” inventor for removing cataracts.
‘Young, gifted and Black’
“Little Known Black Historical Facts” – inspired by the AKA Ascend Network, Emerald Legacy, and the Ebony Society – included Congresswoman Frederica Wilson, who tackles serious issues, as expressed by Shekinah Moorings. The other presenter’s resilience was expressed as a source of history in the making.
Darryl Doyer described his difficult start, but has risen to become the Ebony Society president, homecoming sophomore prince, homecoming king, soon-to-be president of his school’s positive support team, a dual-enrolled, honor student, who will be entering Stetson University for an undergraduate business degree – and a future legacy of giving back to his community.
“Young, gifted and Black” orchestrated singer/songwriter Nina Simone, narrated by Savannah Ryan with a rendition of performing on keys.
“Dreams Begin with Dreamers” like Madam C.J. Walker, a millionaire hair-care entrepreneur, was brought to the forefront by the Delta Academy GEMS, along with their dreams of becoming lawyers, doctors, teachers, astronauts, a U.S. president, and where possibilities are boundless.
Entertainment racked up the poem, “Everyone Can’t Be in Your Front Row,” recited by Stefany Ecklin; “He’s Got The Whole World In His Hands,” sung by Aminah Taite-Headspeth; Negro spirituals by the First Church Youth Choir; Eric Dangerfield and his original guitar pick as a songwriter; and from the onset, the invocation delivered by 5-year-old Azarious Seldon.
“We’ll Take You Back,” cited by Edwina Mezo Brown, highlighted civil rights activists Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton.
The Rev. Jesse Jackson was appointed a special envoy to Africa by President Bill Clinton. The Rev. Al Sharpton was in leadership, opposing racial discrimination in the high-profile protests involving Tawana Brawley and Trayvon Martin.
“Top Female Million-Dollar Executive” Cathy Hughes was recognized by Bryanna Ivey as an entrepreneur, radio and television personality, and business executive. District of Columbia-based Radio One – owned and operated by Ms. Hughes – has 53 radio stations that have expanded to TV One and online ventures.
Samira Taite-Headspeth announced that Marian Wright Edelman began practicing law with the NAACP Legal Defense Fund and helped to establish the Head Start Program. She is founder of the Children’s Defense Fund, which is supportive of children’s needs.
Salute to the arts
Eric Dangerfield asserted that it was never about the flag for NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who protested that Black kids are being killed daily by police officers.
As described by Oslyn Bryant, Chakaia Booker is known in the performance arts, photography, textiles and clothing, but is especially known for her sculptures.
Oslyn, moreover, did a quick makeover of Afrocentric beauty and expressed her art in dancing, singing, visual arts – and developing a character to encourage young girls that they are beautiful, strong, and talented.
Smack dab, in the middle of the 15th Annual Youth Black History Reality Show – much to the surprise of Jeanette Wheeler, the show’s founder/chairman – tributes were read from the show’s former participants: Kassy Eugene, Sasha Eugene, Samantha Brown, Kedron Abbott, and others, thanking Mrs. Wheeler for helping them discover their potential, and providing them with scholarships.
Mrs. Wheeler responded, “I just want to say thank you – and I’m going to ‘kill’ by committee. I’m an old lady; you don’t do this to me. I’ll end up having a heart attack!
“But again, you know, God is so good,” Mrs. Wheeler added. “We are all here to do His work, and this is my way to work with the youth.”
The Youth Black History Reality Committee members are Richard Barnes, Patricia Bottoms, Erma S. Brooks (emerita), Redonia Johnson, Elaine Koonce, Loretta McCray, Harriett A. Whiting, and Annette Williams.
‘Get Out to Vote’campaign Tuesday
On Tuesday, Feb. 27, 6 p.m., the Flagler County Branch of the NAACP will conduct its 2018 “Get Out to Vote” campaign at its general membership meeting.
The meeting will be held at the African American Cultural Society, 4422 U.S. 1 North, Palm Coast.
The kick off will be presented with the following partner organizations: Indivisible, Sierra Club, League of Women Voters, ACLU, and the Democratic Caucus.
Each group will present our citizens with its programs, information and support of voter registration to get out the vote.
This is only the beginning of the Flagler NAACP’s plans for this election year. There will be future events involving other group partners.
For further information, call 386-446-7822.
Church to discuss ‘Black Panther’
A First Church presentation will focus on the No. 1, box-office blockbuster, “Black Panther.”
Nile Valley historian Robert Whiting will address the ancient, historical implications that are brought with the film.
The Rev. G. Vincent Lewis, Leadership Development Pastor, will approach the theological implications.
That’s Feb. 24, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., at First Church, pastored by the Rev. Gillard S. Glover.
First Church, at 91 Old Kings Road North, Palm Coast, can be contacted at 386-446-5759.
Propel series convenes Feb. 26
Minister Carmen Caldwell is excited about a conversation series that will push your call to leadership forward.
She says that women are the answer, and Propel will show how to strengthen your leadership skills, which will enable the community to grow powerful women.
The Propel Women Leadership-Passion Conversation Series, initiated by the Propel Women Calvary Group, will convene Feb. 26, 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., at 20 Red Clover Lane, Palm Coast.
Minister Caldwell says, “I would love for you to join us as we grow in personal leadership.
“Please register and order the workbook, ‘Passion, Growth and Momentum,’ from propelwomen.org.,” she said.
Please feel free to contact Minister Caldwell at 732-646-0002.
As always, remember our prayers for the sick, afflicted, the prodigal son, or daughter, and the bereaved.
Birthday wishes to Shauntice Shephard, Feb. 25; Renata McCarthy, Feb. 26; Jasmyne D. Hendrix, Douglas Brown, Feb. 27; and Jennie Timmons, Feb. 28.
Happy anniversary to Roy and Gloria Benjamin, Feb. 25; and Dr. and Mrs. Irving W. (Christine) Robinson, Feb. 28.