Six weeks ago, I described seven ways to ensure Georgetown will be known as a community of hope and promise and that our people will be acclaimed for their resilience and resolve – pray and care for one another, stop bickering, delight and rejoice in one another, extend genuine Southern Hospitality, shop Front Street first, and share our talents.
The events of the past eight weeks affirm that the people of Georgetown are doing these seven things. Today, I write because we need to focus on number seven -– share our talents and step it up a notch.
As noted in the front page story in today’s Georgetown Times, we have discovered that our parade theme —Honoring First Responders — provides an opportunity to set a Guinness World Record for the largest county parade with that theme. It is a good and noble thing to honor these brave men and women and a delight to have our city and county law enforcement and fire chiefs as the Grand Marshals.
The parade is also an opportunity to draw state-wide and potentially even national media attention to our community. One of the anchors from the Charleston WCBD-TV News 2 Team will be the MC. The media coverage of Georgetown has been excellent and Saturday, December 7th is an opportunity to showcase the special spirit of this special town.
While some may say that trying to set a Guinness World Record is hokey or even foolish, the reality is Georgetown needs some good PR and I am confident we can and will be depicted like the little engine, as “the small town that could.”
December 7th isn’t just the parade. There will be the Friends of the Library Historic Home Tour and entertainment in Francis Marion Park in the afternoon, and a lighted boat parade and Christmas tree lighting ceremony in the evening.
We have 22 days to pull off a major parade with floats and bands and marching groups. A daunting task that necessitates the help and cooperation of everyone or as number seven says, “share our talents.”
Certainly GBA and the Chamber are doing all they can. The merchants are decorating their establishments and helping with the details associated with the parade and the other events on the 7th. Superintendent Randy Dozier and the principals are providing leadership in the schools and we’ve appealed to the Georgetown Ministerial Association to engage their churches by entering floats and choirs in the parade.
At the end of the day, the only way we can pull off a world record parade is if individuals step up and assume responsibility to make it happen.
We need individuals with access to flat bed trucks to volunteer their vehicles to the schools and churches. We need two or three teachers and ten or twelve parents in each school to help the children build floats. We need pastors and a core group of parishioners to work to build floats and arrange for choirs to march in the parade.
And we need city and county employees and our city and county elected officials to get behind this effort.
Will you be one of the flat bed truck owners to make your vehicle available? Will you be one of the teachers and parents to work with children to build floats? Will you be one of the pastors and parishioners to make sure your church has a float and a choir? Will you be the city or county employee who works harder than ever to ensure the city looks beautiful? Will you be the elected official who exercises his or her leadership to make this a spectacular day in Georgetown?
Will you be the one to share your talent?
I hope and pray there will be hundreds of people who will answer these questions by saying, “Yes, I will help.” And I hope that Front Street will be lined with people celebrating the Christmas spirit at the parade and throughout the day.
As the volunteer helping to coordinate these events I ask you to e-mail me – email@example.com — to offer to help noting the specific task you wish to perform and the school or church.
My father told me often, “Son, you do the right things for the right reasons and you will reap wonderful and unexpected benefits.” Working together to help Georgetown bounce back from the devastating fire is the right thing to do. Working together on the parade is the right thing to do. Sharing our talents is certainly the right thing to do.
If we do the right thing, we will reap wonderful and unexpected benefits like the media attention we deserve and even more wonderful the strengthened sense of mutuality that will permeate our community.
Share your talents and celebrate together! That’s Georgetown Strong, Part Two.