#Issa Grand Opening: New Black-Owned Upscale Ballroom Is Open For Business
Your newest upscale event venue is now housed in the Arlington area just beyond the overpass. On September 7th, locals Pamela & Carl Polite hosted the grand opening of The Grand Rose Ballroom.
The Grand Rose Ballroom encapsulates a dreamy fairy tale from the movies and brings it into reality. As crowds walked in, they were met by a local jazzy, soul singer and were served upscale bite-sized hors d’oeuvres including shrimp and grits, chicken and waffles, fresh pasta salad, and shrimp and steak casserole, and so much more. A bar awaited guests with ticketed spirits, while Dr. DJ Doom spun until the night could go no more.
The Polites promised an upscale opening with door prizes, surplus food and a good time, and they did not disappoint. Guests received complimentary make-up sessions, skin care products and discounted rates for the new venue-—just a little something to thank them for supporting the vision.
This new venue is quite an experience of a lifetime. More importantly, the event space is affordable and very accommodating as they offer a plethora of services. So if you’re getting married, hoisting a party or any corporate event, book an appointment to the exclusive, hottest event venue in the Arlington area.
For more information about the grand opening and prices, please click the link below.
MY REVIEW: A TALE OF MY CITY, JACKSONVILLE'S EXPO TO COMMEMORATE LOCAL ARTISTS
From August 1st to October 21st the main library is currently hosting a photo gallery titled Jacksonville: A Tale of My City. The gallery host thirteen Jacksonville artists’ work focusing on the people, neighborhoods, and history of Jacksonville. Young photographers and artists like Khalil Osborne and Tenny Rudolph; older artists like Bob Self; local legends like Malcolm Jackson, and many others have their work on display; culminating in a beautiful and insightful look at Jacksonville’s past, present, and future.
The gallery takes up portions of all four floors of the library. The first floor is where most of the artwork is located. Each wall lined with the artist’s own view of Jacksonville accompanied by artists’ write ups to give you insight to their motivations. The photos are beautiful, they all capture small nuggets of what makes Jacksonville special. The gallery has two historical sections on the third and fourth floors. One about the vanishing of Lavilla, a predominantly black neighborhood that was devastated by Jim Crow policies and the rarely talked about consequences of integration; and eventually demolished. There is also an exhibit on the Ax handle riots of August 1960. Both exhibits are powerful and provide evidence of how racial tension shaped Jacksonville’s landscape.
"The event is more of what Jacksonville needs and wants; spaces and opportunity to showcase the plethora of local talent."
A chance to uplift not just one or two special artists, but the entire arts community. Events like these should be more common and endorsed by the city. Photographers Khalil Osborne and Tenny Rudolph talked to me about how far the community has come, especially for younger artists like themselves; but the government officials and other players at the top are reluctant to give money and/or create policies that stimulate the city’s arts community. This is disheartening, but I don’t believe this will stop the community. Many artists are coming together to uplift each other by hosting events and shows just like this one. Khalil himself has curated shows featuring many local artists. Geexella recently created DuvalFolx, a safe place dance party for the youth of Jacksonville. These are just two examples, but many others are doing the same. Whether or not those at the top will embrace the arts community is yet to be seen, but until then the community will embrace themselves; and I am proud to witness and be apart of.
Meet Amari Everett
One local Jacksonville student plans to transform from a Buc to a Bison. While it is very easy to get discouraged by the naysayers, one true fighter is sticking to her dreams and plans to make it out.
Amari Everett, a senior at First Coast High School, applied to 10 colleges, got accepted into five, and is currently on the waitlist for two. She enrolled in the Early College Program, where she attended FSCJ for the entirety of her senior year. Not letting this stop her from fulfilling her plans, she will graduate from High School on May 24th. She will continue her journey to college on August 11th with 30 college credits.
When asked why Amari wanted to join Howard her response was,
“I am going to be submerged in a place where I am surrounded by people that look like me and that think like me. Push me to achieve strengths I didn’t know I had, and through all of my struggles that I come across, I am going learn from them. Being in DC is a great location to have networking and truly build on who I am and what I want to become. Lastly, it’s the MECCA!! IT IS LIT! ”
Her Credentials Speaks for Themselves...
Cumulative GPA 3.8
National Honor Society
Business Professional of America
Student Government Association
Junior Class President
Vystar Student Academy
Participated in Soccer, Cheerleading, & Flag Football in high school
Invitee to The Youth Recognition 2018 Gamma Boule Banquet
Follow Amari's journey to success on Instagram @aeverett__.
Feel free to leave Amari with words of encouragement in the comments!
Enough is enough. Every day, lives are claimed by gun violence and senseless murders. From cop killings to neighborhood crimes, Jacksonville is known for ushering young, black men into the grave before their time.
This is why City Council Candidate Kevin Monroe, hosted a live panel to discuss the effects on gun violence in the community. On Saturday, January 27, several influential leaders joined Monroe at Philippian Community Church. The panel included Channel 4’s Gil Smith, Pastor Virgil Jones, Jr., Pastor Nahshon Nicks, Dr. William Thomas and teacher Nicole Curry. With so many factors revolving around gun violence, the issues boiled down to one factor—communication. The entire panel agreed that parents need to communicate with their children, especially males, about the importance of guns and gun safety.
Smith urged the community to educate their children on gun laws. “In Florida, guns do not need to be registered, but you must have a license,” he says. Gun owners are also required to keep guns in a safe place--completely away from children.
Safety always comes first, but there are many Children who may never hear this advice from a parent, especially a paternal figure. Dr. Thomas, a Chaplain for inmates, says that 90% inmates grew up without a father. He suggested to change the dynamic of the family structure. To do that, he encouraged parents to work through conflict together to ensure a safe environment for children.
“You need a male structure in the house in order to raise your children. Without that, that child is fair game. He’s fair game to the gangs. Fair game to the streets. Much like low-hanging fruit, he’s easy –picking,” says Thomas.
Smith also suggested that we cannot continue to excuse fatherlessness. “Male figures may not be there now. They may never be there. Then do what is necessary to prepare your child(ren),” Smith says.
Several locals in the audience had questions and concerns, but one local had a devastating testimony. Earline Nixon, a regular churchgoer, recalled the loss of her 19-year-old nephew to gun violence on New Year’s Eve.
“He just wanted to feel like he belonged. Some of the people in the streets are probably who killed him. When you leave here, you’re not coming back. My nephew probably thought, ‘I ain’t gone get killed’. But guess what? He was in his car at a stop sign and he was shot in his head," Nixon says.
Much like Nixon, many grandmothers, neighbors, mothers, have lost sons and daughters to gun violence. So, what can be done to decrease the gun violence? How can parents communicate with their children more? The panel and audience agreed on multiple solutions.
Smith advised to try speaking with your children at night before they go to bed.
“There’s something about the darkness that opens up communication,” he says. He finds it easier to communicate with his daughter in this way.
Pastor Nicks encouraged the community to ban together. He pointed out that the most valuable resource in the black community is depending on each other. Communities cannot depend on law enforcement systems to restore Black communities.
“We don’t need better response times. We need police officers via residents, via citizens, interacting with the community on a regular basis. Give them incentives to stay with the people they’re supposed to serve,” says Nicks.
The issue of gun violence will never get resolved in one conversation. But you'll never know how one conversation can save your children's lives.
"It’s not up to the media to teach our children how to communicate. Talk to your kids," says Monroe. Monroe plans to have more live panels to discuss gun violence in the near future.
For more information about gun laws and safety, click on the link below.
If you've missed the live panel, below are a few photos from the event.