It’s a line from a movie, but it proved true this past August 25th. We were finally in the new building and feeling like we were getting our feet under us. When talk of an open house started I will admit feeling exhausted and wanting to lay low for a while. With help from family and other community members though, we finally planned an open house. Now if you don’t live in the South, let me explain something to you. There is a very short window of opportunity to plan a party toward the end of summer before football season begins. If you hope to have anyone there you need to carefully look at the SEC football schedule and make your decisions accordingly. I have known whole weddings to be ruined by choosing the wrong Saturday in September! As the planning started it was exciting to think about showing our project to the community. This project has been a LONG and very difficult road. Every aspect of the process had been trying. Now at the completion of it though it really came together nicely. As we contacted a band, food trucks, ordered tents and chairs, my insecurities crept up. What if nobody came? What if we stand here all night just talking to each other and nobody shows up? Pushing those feelings aside we pressed onward with the planning. Finally, the big night arrived.
In August, in Alabama it’s bound to be hot, but it wasn’t unbearable. There was a slight shade on the lot next door where we were prepped and ready. I stood back and thought it looked pretty darn good if I did say so myself! About that time, a passer by at the red light yelled out the window. “Is there an admission to get in the event?” Now I admit I was confused. I yelled back, “What event? OH!!! This? This event! No, sir. No admission. Just come on and enjoy” WOW! We looked like “AN EVENT ” I felt pretty good about that.
People started wandering over and touring the building, tasting treats, buying their favorite products. About an hour into the open house a local fireman told me he guessed there were almost 300 people outside! Now I had to see that. I slipped outside and looked in amazement at people everywhere! They had brought their own chairs, they were lined up at the food truck. It was a truly humbling sight. The night went on and I saw so many people. Some had travelled from other states, some I had not seen since childhood, it seemed like everyone in the community had turned out. As the night drew to a close I thanked everyone I could, even though I know I didn’t even come close to seeing everyone who was there. Not only did the people come, but they showed up in mass! It’s great to be a part of a community where people care.
Little towns get a bad wrap sometimes but there are so many good things about small town America. That night was just one example. If you attended open house let me say thank you again. If you couldn’t be there, come see us at our new home!! We look forward to spicing up this corner for years to come!