Perhaps we’re witnessing a history in the making – Do I feel excited?

Let’s backtrack a bit first. Last October, I attended a community seminar at the Youth and Family Services (YFS) on Nantucket Avenue. The seminar’s theme was centered on families and communities in the neighborhood. In that seminar, we proposed a community event in the city to celebrate the cultural heritage and diversity.

The city used to have a similar event several years ago. The event, known as “The Taste of College Park (TOCP),” – was mainly focused on multi-ethnic food shared by city residents. My fellow NCP blogger Joe Smith wrote about this now-defunct event here on his blog.

A few months ago, the possibility of having such a city-wide event surfaced again following a slew of emails among city residents. Thanks to a few kind-hearted residents and city officials, who agreed to host the first exploratory meeting, we had our first meeting at Davis Hall in early March. I wrote this post on the day we had our first meeting.

Since the first meeting, we had two more sessions at City Hall. We also expanded the core group to include many representatives from various ethnicities, schools, faiths and student groups. The M-NCPPC, the YFS, and the City Public Service were also involved. We plan to include a few more groups in the coming months for a broader representation of this event. A number of subcommittees (food, media, outreach, activities etc.) are already formed.

The date has been set for October 9 this year. Location: Paint Branch Elementary School and the College Park Community Center. A ‘Save the Date’ flyer is being designed. A website solely dedicated to the event is also in the making. We’re hoping to reach out to as many city residents, participants and vendors through this website and the flyer.

The city has set aside $ 5,000 in the draft FY2011 budget for the event, yet we need to raise more funds to cover the expenses.

All in all, it’s a great, coordinated movement. Thanks and kudos to everyone who’s working hard to make the event a success – in an effort to bring communities together.

Please stay tuned for further updates as things progress. In the meantime, if you have ideas, please feel free to send those to us.

The first ever College Park Day poster