From Crystal Cauley and staff reports Blue Ridge Now
The first Community Festival held at Sullivan Park on Sept. 5 was a success, according to Crystal Cauley, one of the organizers.
Cauley, along with Reggie Harrison, Bilalian Caldwell and Indián Jackson, held the event to pay tribute to the Brooklyn community, also known as Green Meadows.
"The goal is to unite the Green Meadows Community and highlight local businesses, community outreach businesses and preserve history," Cauley said.
Earlier this year, Cauley proposed changing the Green Meadows name back to Brooklyn. A decision hasn't been made by the community yet.
At the Community Fest, YaShara Lynch sang The National Black Anthem, "Lift Every Voice and Sing."
There were several speakers at the event including U.S. Congress North Carolina 11th District candidates Eric Gash and Jay Carey, Hendersonville Mayor Pro Tempore Jerry Smith (who is running for re-election), Connie Knight with local coalition group Grow Our Own Teachers of Color" and Hendersonville City Council candidate Raphael Morales.
Smart Start Partnership for Children distributed free books to children. The Carolina Diva Diamonds and DJ Twan provided entertainment.
Cauley said community awareness was the focus of the festival. Cauley and Diamond Cash, who is a professional artist, plan to highlight the Brooklyn community in art that will depict African American life and history in Henderson County.
Cauley is going to write spoken word poetry and short stories, including nonfiction children's books.
There are plans to bring back the Harambee Festival next year. It was once headed by community leaders including Diane Caldwell who will be a resource to bring the festival back, Cauley said.