The Transylvania Times -

Rosenwald News


Last updated 6/16/2021 at 1:12pm

A walking tour group poses for a photo on the site of historic marker #19 - Blue Diamond and Deep Cover.

There has been a lot going on. So much of it is good news.

Many of you have reported getting the COVID-19 vaccine when it is your turn. It feels good to especially be outside in bigger groups with vaccinated friends and family. Also, keep safety in mind if you go indoors at a public space. Some of you seem inclined to set the masks aside. Others are still somewhat cautious. After one-and-a-half years of living with a pandemic that is still not over, it is understandable that you may have to ease back into whatever change feels comfortable. From our local Transylvania NAACP group, "If you need help making an online COVID vaccine appointment, use our TransNAACP Buddy System: email us at [email protected] to receive sign-up and local transportation assistance associated with getting a vaccine shot. And check our daily updates at"

Yesterday, I drove past the Tannery Skate Park. It was early afternoon. The grounds looked clean and well cared for. I was happy to see that people were there and to also notice a teenage boy walking home with his skateboard tucked under his arm. It is an immensely satisfying feeling to see that facility being enjoyed. If you can remember, there was quite a journey to bring the completed park, and the bigger one over at Parks & Recreation, to fruition.

Coming down Cashiers Valley Road toward the heart of Rosenwald, I knew that the city had the concrete poured for the basketball court at Silver-steen Memorial Play- ground. It was another thing entirely to get closer and actually see the pretty blue paint on its surface and the installed basketball hoops. It's perfect timing for this Saturday's Juneteenth Freedom Day celebrations and for the upcoming Sunday basket-ball tournament. Ursula Wynn has been the organizing force for Sunday basketball along with much appreciated city sponsor-ship. She reports having a few people asking about grilling out at the park that day. This will be acceptable, providing the grill is not under cover (tent or canopy) of any sort. For more information, you can reach her online at Facebook or drop by Papa L.E.W's restaurant off of Main Street, downtown Brevard.

This Saturday, just before the Juneteenth celebrations kick off, there will be a groundbreaking ceremony over at neighboring MCJCC property at 11 a.m. This is the moment you have been holding your breath about, praying over, maybe doubting that it will ever happen, being patient or not so patient about the speed of things, grumbling or praising depending on whether you have accurate information or not. We know! We hear all kinds of things from one extreme to another, but it is all perfectly fine. We have now come to this historic point in time. Yes, time has come for groundbreaking and the building of our new community center to commence. Take your joyous feelings afterwards to the playground and let us celebrate and maintain a vision together.

In other news, on Monday, I met with a group of people for a walking tour. I did a couple of informal walks last year, but this was the first scheduled tour since COVID-19 struck in 2020. We had a wonderful group of 11. I don't usually write about the tour groups, but I wanted to share some of my observations along with the joy of offering a service that someone desired. It was good to do work that feels enjoyable, to get paid and to share wonderful history. This was the Black history walking tour, offered through Morning Glory Inspirations. We spent one-and-a-half to two hours together and enjoyed the company of Rosenwald alumna and Black historian Edith Darity further along the way.

We started off with a nice, sunny day and lovely pockets of shade along our route to Rosenwald. The group makeup was all white and all female with one male. They were a great group. No complaints about anything. They were super interested and had great questions and comments. My thanks to Barb Jackson for reaching out and organizing the group for our shared adventure. There were members present from a local church who were then joined by neighbors and other friends.

I find all aspects of history fascinating and interesting. Not just the good bits, but also the parts that can be frustrating, disappointing, sad and downright infuriating. This group wanted to know everything that could be packed in a short period of time. In the works is a way for you to take a self-guided history tour and soon for you to go online to the website and view something similar. What this group helped bring to the forefront is how valuable the human interactive piece is. So, we will plan to keep an in-person walking tour on the calendar. Our time was about history and learning, but also about the value of relationships, undestanding and appreciating each other and connection. When we met with Edith across from Bethel "A," the group was absorbed in her sharing history, her experiences and remembered anecdotes. At that point, I don't think that anyone cared if they walked anymore or not! It was all about the conversation, our positive back and forth exchanges and what could be brought to life in their imaginations. What also came across loud and clear, is that even though everyone came from different backgrounds, many coming from other states even, they were invested in positive change. The money that comes from these tours goes right back into the community. It may pay for flyers, brochures, the website, materials for community events and projects, or in this case, the group of youngsters who will be playing music at the playground this Saturday! Keep posted for a future article and photos about them!

Incidentally, if you live off Oakdale Street, Duckworth Avenue, Hemphill Circle, near the playground or the MCJCC properties and you have an interest in sharing your remembrances during one of our walking tours, reach out to me so that we can discuss how to include you.

Black historian Edith Darity discussed local history with the walking group.

Newsworthy items for submission for Rosenwald Community News are welcomed from community members, churches, clubs and groups. If you have an idea for a story or interview for me to capture, let me know. Contact Nicola Karesh at [email protected] or (828) 421-8615.


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