For immediate release - February 18, 2011
Leesburg Black Heritage Festival to Include Dedication to City Commissioner John Christian
The Leesburg Black Heritage Festival will feature four days of celebrations, food, entertainment and recognition for several community trendsetters.
City Commissioner John Christian will be honored at 5:30 p.m. Feb. 24 for years of hard work and dedication to encourage construction of the Leesburg Recreational Complex, 1851 Griffin Road in Leesburg. The 11-acre, 14,000-square-foot facility - one of only two municipally owned gymnasiums in Lake County - improves the quality of life for local residents as a safe, friendly venue for youth and adult recreational programs.
Christian will be recognized with a bronze plaque to be unveiled at the Recreational Complex along with presentations by city officials. “This gym is a safe haven for so many kids who could potentially become so easily seduced into negative activities,” said, Dr. Erika Jasper, who headed up recognition efforts. “The gym affords the opportunity for so many children to turn potential negative energy to be used constructively into activities that allow them to fine tune their athletic and social skills. The gym is a sense of family - a place where many find a sense of worth.”
The Black Heritage Festival will continue with the Leesburg Apollo talent competition at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 25 at the Leesburg High School Auditorium, 1401 Yellow Jacket Way. The show, which will be judged by the spectators, features cash prizes up to $500. Talent entry is $10. Show admission is $5.
For more information about the talent show, contact Tiffany Myles at 352-255-5390 or Marcus Niblack at 352-504-7120.
The Heritage Festival heads to Pine Street near downtown Leesburg for an outdoor event from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Feb. 26. Activities include live entertainment by jazz bands, minister Darrel Poitier, solo artist Derrick Smith and various mime performers, gospel rappers Preacha Man and Funk Boi DJs. Ethnic food and displays also will be available.
The final event of the Heritage Festival is a gospel concert at 4 p.m. Feb. 27 at the Christian Worship Center, 929 County Road 468 in Leesburg. The concert will include minister Javis Mays, Sherryl Anderson and Thomas Ware. Three community trendsetters will be recognized: Dr. Jeffrey Kerina, Marcus Niblack and Juanita Russell.
Leesburg is a progressive city of more than 20,000 residents in northwest Lake County. The city government serves twice as many people with its electric, gas, water, wastewater and fiber-optic public utilities. Leesburg also is a central hub for commerce, attracting 50,000 people to work each weekday.