Meeksville residents celebrate family and friends

Published 10:45 pm Tuesday, June 19, 2012

By Whitley Kilcrease

Harmony Community Park was filled this weekend with the sights, sounds and smells of traditional summer pastimes at the 7th Annual Scott-Green Family and Friends Jamboree and Youth Awareness Day.

The scent of smoking barbecue and hum of friendly conversations greeted neighbors and friends from Meeksville and the surrounding area as they gathered for food, fun and community involvement.

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The weekend began with a 70s-themed fish fry on Friday night and continued with Youth Awareness Day on Saturday.

“Coach” Calvin Griffin was the main selected speaker of Saturday’s event, underlining the role and importance of family and community in the lives of the local youth.

“This brings people together,” Griffin said. “I enjoy seeing people you don’t see on a regular basis and being able to see everyone in one setting together.”

“This is not a family reunion,” said Jeffery Scott, family member and founder of the Jamboree, said. “This day is for family, friends and the whole community together.

“We spend a lot of time on stuff that doesn’t matter. Family matters. Community matters. That’s what today’s about.”

Griffin spoke on celebration of community and its ties to black history.

He began with a story of “footwashings” when black families traveled to the river to wash their feet after learning of their freedom from slavery. When they came back, they held a celebration with food, singing and dancing.

“We kept on celebrating every year and started calling it a ‘family reunion,’” said Griffin. “I learned a new word today, now we call it a ‘jamboree.’”

Griffin closed the Youth Awareness portion of the day with a encouraging speech directed at the children and teenagers in attendance, derived from his experiences as an educator and coach at local area schools.

“Time passes but time doesn’t change,” Griffin said. “Sixty seconds is still a minute and 60 minutes is still an hour. Once it’s gone you can’t get it back.”

Griffin strongly encouraged the youth in attendance to “stop wasting time” and instead begin studying more or helping out the community during summer months.

Griffin was among several speakers throughout the day, including County Commissioner Homer Wright and Deputy Cedric Green of the Meeksville Volunteer Fire Department, as well as representatives from Care Ambulance Service and the Pike County AIM Project.