Community Forum, Black Heritage Festival, & MLK Weekend

My weekend started on Thursday, as I was the Moderator for Project Links Community Forum “Here I Stand” held at HCC Ybor campus. The forum was designed to continue Dr. MLK’s dream of non-violence.and to discuss a plan of action that would work towards building a safer and improved neighborhood. The panelists were (l-r) Rev. Dr. Glenn B. Dames, Jr of Allen Temple AME Church, Chief Eric Ward of Tampa Police Dept., Rev. Willie Dixon of the COACH Foundation, Tamara Shamburger, School Board Member, Freddy Barton of Safe & Sound. and Life Malcolm of Word Power Publications. The discussion was lively, free flowing, informative, engaging and result oriented. Starting at 6 pm and ending at 8pm, it was a great way to kick off the MLK weekend.
After the forum, I joined my wife Tampa Bay Tammy at the Black Heritage Festival Gala held at the TPepin Hospitality Center. The audience was entertained by comedian and ventriloquist Willie Brown. He st was exceptionally funny. Then Lakeside band took us on a ‘Fantastic Voyage’. By 11:30 we were out of there for all the ones who had to work on Friday morning.
On Friday evening we attended Jazz Under the Stars put on by The Hillsborough Action Plan (THAP) a non-profit organization founded by James Hammond. It was the golden opportunity for Executive Director Jannette Bradley and General Manager, Steve Marshall to showcase the grounds of 5508 50th Street. The outside mall style venue had VIPs and vendors set up outside the office spaces of their tenants. However, the performances were held inside their 10, 000 square foot facility where there were two bars to accommodate the crowd. Performances were by local artist, Cleo Hart, saxophonist Marcus Boone, The Maurice Allen Band. Ebone Cruz of WTMP was the MC. A second line (New Orleans style) was started as we marched around the building dancing to the song, ‘When The Saints Go Marching In’. It was truly a real good time. and over about 10pm. After Jazz Under the Stars was the private after party for those of us with any energy left. We stopped by a friends house and played some bid whiz and got home aftrer midnight..
Saturday morning at 9am we cranked up the radio show with the Power Hour on WTMP featuring Tampa Bay Tammy and me. Since we didn’t get much sleep from the night before we came straight home after the Power Hour and took a power nap. We need it to be ready for the engagement party of Chaz Jansen and Kim Jensen whos e wedding will be held overlooking the lake at our home. Tammy had to make her chocolate covered strawberries. We had a great time with their families and friends as we toasted to their upcoming wedding. I felt my son would have been pleased.
Sunday morning we went to our church, Bible Based Fellowship Church on Ehrlich to thank God for all the favor he continues to bestow upon us. Sunday evening our festivites continued as we rolled out to the Soul Fest at the USF Sundome. It was an YBOR City JAZZ House production, featuring Al B. Sure, Johnny Gill. and Brian McKnight.
The Show kicked off with Beatdown Band with Marcus Vance and they were off the chain. Comedian J Lamont was superb and I had no idea he was that talented. Al B. Sure sang to tracks but he gave it all he had. Johny Gill had a dynamic show with beautiful, cheeks exposed back up dancers. Brian Mcknight was smooth as always and still can help a brother close the deal.
Monday morning we dragged out of bed to make our way across the bridge to the MLK Jr Breakfast hosted by the NCNW in St Pete as guest of Senator Darryl Rouson and his wife chairperson Angela Rouson, Power CoupleTM of the Year 2013. The speaker, Rosalyn Brock was encouraging and energizing, just what we needed. Her message to reach back and help those that need it riveted throughout the audience of 1100 and even brought some to tears when she told a story about a herd of African elephants. Then I was off to the Black Heritage Festival Golf Tournament held at Rogers Park. While my team did not place we had big fun supporting the cause. The first place winners with a score of 58 under par were repeat winners from last year. This team with two teenagers were, Evan Jenkins, Fernando Fernandez, James Jones and Robert Culp.
I got to tell you the weekend was filled with things to do, places to go and people to see. It was a roller coaster weekend, with great choices and alternatives and that’s what the Tampa Bay area has to offer, sun, fun & on the run.

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| 827 views | February, 2nd, 2017
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