Category Archives: Your Kids

Blues and Sweet Potato Pie Juneteenth Celebration

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By David Volz

The Blues and Sweet Potato Pie Juneteenth Celebration was held at Apollo Park in Pompano Beach. Residents of the community and visitors from around the nation got together to celebrate, have fun and enjoy some great food.

Juneteenth is the oldest national celebration that commemorates the ending of slavery in the United States following the end of the Civil War. The event in Pompano Beach was a celebration of the many accomplishments of the African American community.

“This is the 15th year we have held the Juneteenth Celebration here,” said Rhonda Walker, branch library manager for the Northwest Branch Library. She and members of Friends of the Library wore dresses from the 1860s.

Maxine York, a blues singer, participated in the event. “I love to sing the blues and I enjoy being a part of this celebration,” she said.

Kamili Nilata, an arts educator, gave a performance of foot rhythms. “I teach all forms of core subjects and I also teach movement,” she said.

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Members of the 2nd Infantry Regiment United States Colored Troops , Living History Association, offered a presentation. They came from Tallahassee to give a presentation on the Regiment which was an African American military organization that fought for the Union during the Civil War. “We are preserving living history and educating young people about what African Americans did during the Civil War,” said Jarvis Rosier, Sr., project director of the Colored Troops Education Project.

And it was a chance to have some fun. There were performances by Glory Train, New Direction Ministries, Kings School of the Arts, All God’s Children Academy and other groups. People could enjoy barbecue and sweet potato pies. Janetta Williams and her husband Bobby Williams displayed handmade quilts. There was a mobile presentation of African American history. It was also an opportunity for people to socialize and spend time together.

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Students enjoy leadership program at FAU

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By David Volz

Rachel Durrett has enjoyed participating in a military leadership program at Florida Atlantic University. She is part of a Navy JROTC program and hopes to do well in the coming year.

Durrett was among about 300 students from JROTC programs throughout Broward County who participated in leadership, confidence building and technology activities during the week long program.

“I like the environment here and the chance to meet people from other schools,” said Durrett. “I enjoyed building a submarine.”

Gabriel Dominguez, who participates in an Army JROTC program, also enjoyed the program. “I like how we are learning about new technology. I like the atmosphere of a military program because there is respect and discipline. I like the team activities we do and the chance to meet new people.”

The students participated in activities to build confidence and leadership. They completed a high and low ropes course, a climbing wall and a five mile canoe trip at the Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge. There was a strong emphasis on Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). The students built an underwater submarine and a car. The emphasis of the JROTC program is on leadership and citizenship. Also, JROTC students are encouraged to go to college after high school. There is no combat training.

Colonel Kenneth Green, coordinator for the JROTC programs in Broward County, was pleased by what he saw. “We are motivating students to become better citizens.”

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