Valdosta Daily Times

Top News

June 19, 2014

Boosters celebrate Juneteenth

VALDOSTA — On June 19, 1865, Major General Gordon Granger came to Galveston, Texas, with the news that the war had ended and that the enslaved were free. In honor of this historic day, the celebration known as Juneteenth was created.

For 22 years, the Southside Library Boosters have hosted the annual Juneteenth Celebration, with a special dinner as the kick-off event.

To kick off the 2014 celebration, the celebration dinner was held Tuesday night.

The program included several performances and special song selections. The Family of Aya Community Rhythm Movement Organization performed two authentic African-style dances. As for songs, Renee McKinnon performed a solo while the Juneteenth Mass Choir performed three separate selections.

The featured speaker for the evening was Elder Edward D. Mack.

Mack is a graduate of Lowndes High School, who earned his bachelor’s from the University of Central Florida and his master’s from Ashford University. He helped found New Destiny Temple of Deliverance.

Mack’s message focused on three points. “I’m going to talk about the journey of where we began, where we are today and where we have to go.”

As for where African-Americans began, he spoke about the history of Juneteenth. He then moved onto where they are today.

“We need the world to stop focusing on how much we are tweaking or how many people we are shooting. These are not the real issues we face. We need to focus on the condition of where our people are,” said Mack.

“We need our counterparts to understand that we are more than a choir or a man with a mic. We can raise our children; we can change our community. We account for more than half of the population in the city, but the problem is that we hardly own anything. And we won’t go to board meetings for it. We are the heartbeat of Valdosta. Valdosta was built on the backs of our ancestors, but regardless of where we are now, we are no better than where we were in 1865.”

He spoke of the importance of power economics and compared life to a game of Monopoly.

“We can’t play the game if we don’t have money. Integration didn’t help us; we didn’t want to go to school with them. We wanted the money. It’s not about color, it’s about money. Go out and start businesses and get your licenses. Do what you’ve got to do. We have to create and produce,” said Mack.

Near the conclusion of his speech, he focused on encouraging words of community power.

“Please raise your right hand in the air. Now ball it into a fist. I’ve been told that when a large group of black people raise their right hands in the air like this it makes white men uncomfortable.”

The dinner concluded with special presentations to both Mack and Evelyn Ford. Ford is the only surviving founder of the Southside Boosters, according to organizers.

To conclude the Juneteenth celebration, Southside Boosters will hold a Community Awareness Day Saturday, June 21. The event will be from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. with opening ceremonies beginning at 11 a.m. The event will be held at the Lowndes County Courthouse Square in Downtown Valdosta.

1
Text Only
Top News
  • Johnson family files second suit against school system

    Two months after filing a civil suit against Lowndes County Schools, Kendrick Johnson's parents have filed a second suit against the school system which again claims that negligence and bullying led to their son’s death.

    July 29, 2014

  • Bears spotted on Baytree Road

    A pair of bear sightings along Baytree Road could indicate a growing black bear population in Lowndes County.

    July 29, 2014

  • photo.JPG Dump truck suspects apprehended

    LCSO has apprehended both of the suspects believed to be connected with the theft of a dump truck in Macon on Monday.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dollar Tree-Family Do_Rich copy.jpg Dollar Tree buys Family Dollar

    The fight for penny pinchers is intensifying.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • APTOPIX Mideast Israe_Rich copy.jpg Gaza war rages despite Hamas, Israel truce pledges

    Israel and Hamas launched new attacks Sunday in the raging Gaza war, despite going back and forth over proposals for a temporary halt to nearly three weeks of fighting ahead of a major Muslim holiday.
    The failure to reach even a brief humanitarian lull in the fighting illustrated the difficulties in securing a more permanent truce as the sides remain far apart on their terms.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ga. woman sentenced in child abuse case

    The mother of a 1-year-old boy who was hospitalized with a fractured skull in 2012 has been sentenced to nine years in prison.

    July 29, 2014

  • AP81072904918 copy.jpg Today in History for Tuesday, July 29, 2014

    Today is Tuesday, July 29, the 210th day of 2014. There are 155 days left in the year.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • United Way presents fundraising prom

    Save the date — and make sure to find one — for The Prom, a retro-celebration to benefit the Greater Valdosta United Way.

    July 29, 2014

  • Times hosts blood drive

    The Valdosta Daily Times will participate in a blood drive, 12:30-5:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 1, with the American Red Cross Bloodmobile visiting The Times’ 201 N. Troup St. parking lot.

    July 29, 2014

  • Free health fair planned for Quitman on Aug. 9

    A free health fair hosted by the 100 Black Men of Brooks-Grady-and-Thomas Counties, Inc. and sponsored by Archbold Hospital will take place Aug. 9  from 8 a.m.-noon. The second annual 100 B-G-T Health Fair will be located at the Courtland Avenue Church of Christ in Quitman. All Valdosta-Lowndes County residents are welcome to attend.

    July 29, 2014

Top News
Poll

Do you agree with the millage rate increases?

Yes. We need to maintain services
No. Services should have been cut.
     View Results