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Carrousels get ‘Sweet’ in the South

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Posted: Thursday, August 15, 2013 12:05 am

"Sweet Soul of the South" was the theme of the 48th National Convention of Carrousels, Inc. Held in Atlanta last month, the convention was headquartered at the Intercontinental Buckhead Hotel

Thursday night’s weekend opener "Smooth Blues & Soulful Foods" was held in the grand foyer of the Morehouse School of Medicine. Old-school live entertainment, soul food and Southern desserts set the pace for a fabulous weekend.

Native St. Louisan Brenda Lyons Kennedy chaired the Friday night dinner dance "Sistas & Brothas...Swingin “with Swagger.”  Potpourri correspondent says the dance floor was at capacity all night long. “Southern Belles with Southern Flair" was the theme for the organization’s business meeting and luncheon Saturday. Members were greeted by the Atlanta Carrousels who sported beautiful white hats, lace gloves and Scarlett O'Hara fans. 

Staci Garrett Clayborne conducted the annual National Memorial Service. Ruth Lewis was recognized for her leadership as National Auditor. Sandra Murdock was presented, along with past National Presidents. 

"Southern Lights, Starry Nights" was the theme of the formal dinner dance Saturday night. "La Carrousel" hospitality suite was party central during the entire convention. "Sweet Bye-Bye" served the Sunday farewell breakfast, a scrumptious end to a wonderful weekend. 

St. Louis Carrousels & Carrafellas in A-town were Andrea Johnson- Lee (chapter president) and Gregory Lee, Staci Garrett Clayborne, James Oliver, Cheryl and John Jones, Frances and Charles Gooden, Gwen and Michael Key, Ruth and Floyd Lewis, Sandra and Nathaniel Murdock, Diane and John Nathan, Joyce and David Price, Peggy and James Proctor, Dianne W. Powell, Cheryl Young, Bettye and Jonathan Reed, Karen and Gary Watkins and Frances "Cookie" and Harold Whitfield.  

The 26th Annual Salute to Excellence in Education salutes Art J. McCoy, Ph.D., superintendent of the Ferguson-Florissant School District. McCoy will receive the prestigious Stellar Performer in Education award. The 2013 Excellence in Education Awardees include Wanda P. LeFlore, Ed.D., principal, Kennard Classical Jr. Academy, SLPS; and Wilma L. Slaughter, M.S., mathematics educator, Hixon Middle School, Webster Groves. Friday, September 13 is the date for this annual Scholarship and Awards Gala. Please call Robin Britt or Kate Daniel to reserve your table now at 314-533-8000. It will be a grand affair!

St. Louis Girl Friends honored charter member and founder Anita Lyons Bond with a delightful luncheon in the Magnolia Room on July 20. Girl Friends listened to jazz and interesting stories describing the origin of the St. Louis Girl Friends chapter founded by Anita. Girl Friend Joyce Price coordinated a game for guests to answer questions about Anita. There were so many interesting facts and stories; everyone received a prize/gift from the guest of honor. Girl Friend Anita was dressed to the nines in a fabulous powder blue St. John.

Joining in the fun were members Linda Wilson (manager, Anheuser Busch InBev) and National Chatterbox editor for the organization, Mary Riley Douglas, Jerda Marie Riley, M.D., Shirley Kayira, Sandra Murdock, Dr. Mary Ellen Anderson, Janet Williams, Lynn Kennedy, Adrienne Glore, Bettye Reed, Billie Jean Randolph and me.

The group had an opportunity to welcome transfer member Leisha Gordon (director and bank officer – TIAA-CREF).  Leisha transferred from the Buffalo chapter. She is looking forward to getting to know her St. Louis Girl Friends. Also transferring to the St. Louis chapter from Columbus is newly appointed VP – Diversity BJC Katrina Farmer. Welcome to St. Louis, ladies.

Kudos to artist Adrienne Jenkins Patel for her participation in Framations Gallery Juried Exhibition, “Fluid: Exploring Watercolor” in St. Charles, June through July of this year. The exhibition was a great success. Adrienne’s work was well received as the People's Choice Winner. Her Free Spirit will remain on display in the gallery through August 29. Adrienne’s works will also be featured at Art St. Louis, “Under the Influence” Juried Exhibition, St. Louis, MO, August 17-October 10. Interested in additional information? Check out Adrienne’s website

Have a great week. Blessings! Dana Grace:     

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