United We Stand: 'It's about fellowship'
By SARAH FAY CAMPBELL
This year’s United We Stand community reunion and picnic was dubbed the best ever.
“Every picnic we’ve had, to me, has been better than the last,” said Willie Pritchett of United We Stand for Positive Results.
The picnic/reunion is held each September at the playground of the Newnan Housing Authority apartments off Boone Drive.
The organizers and youth of United We Stand stay up all night smoking pork and chicken, and the grill masters were busy all day Saturday. Plenty of volunteers helped serve food and a DJ kept things festive.
“It’s about fellowship,” said Bohannon. “We hope we have humbly served the community with honor and integrity,” he said. “We we hope to continue to do so in the future.”
“It’s great,” said Strafford Newson. “I’m here every year when I’m not working. I have a good time here,” he said. “I hope it continues.
Anthony and Jennifer Stewart were at the picnic for their first time.
“It’s a great community event,” said Anthony. “I saw people I haven’t seen in 30 years.”
Charlie Jean Wood was busy serving food, including her famous baked beans. She’s been making baked beans for the picnic for all of its 18 years, she said.
“It’s a blessing for me to help others,” Wood said.
“We need this,” she said of the picnic. “To help the homeless or anybody that doesn’t have anything to eat on a Saturday,” she said.
The picnic “brings the community together,” Wood said. “It doesn’t matter who you are or where you came from.”
“It’s a beautiful thing to be united,” said Betty Ogletree.
The guest of honor at Saturday’s picnic was longtime community volunteer Carrie Mae Pritchett.
Pritchett, mother of United We Stand’s Willie Pritchett, has worked with youth in the community for years, including with Girls on the Move, a girl’s organization similar to United We Stand that was active several years ago.
She’s also a co-founder of United We Stand.
“Today is dedicated to her,” Bohannon said.
The plaque presented to Mrs. Pritchett states she was honored for her “many years of dedicated and dependable service to the youth, families and senior residents of the Newnan area.”
“You have made a difference and impacted the lives of hundreds of youth, parents and families through mentoring, tutoring, volunteerism and community involvement,” it is stated on the plaque.
“I was really, really surprised,” Mrs. Pritchett said. “It was really unexpected. Because when I do stuff, I just do it because I like to do it,” she said.
“It doesn’t make any difference if anybody else recognizes it, as long as the kids I am working with are being helped.”