Plaquemine mayor says Thanksgiving breakfast and 'All is Bright' Christmas celebration events were well received, well attended
The City of Plaquemine hosted its annual All is Bright Hometown Christmas celebration along Railroad Avenue downtown and Mayor Ed Reeves Jr. said the event was hugely successful in a recent interview.
The event is sponsored by two of the city’s organizations, Plaquemine Main Street Program and We Are The Difference.
“We received a tremendous amount of compliments on the festival,” Reeves said, adding the considerably larger number of vendors stretched along the railroad tracks were delighted with the turnout.
“We had almost 80 vendors, which I think is about twice as may was what we had last year,” he said. “They were pleased and I thank all of them for participating.”
Reeves said he believed the crowd was larger for this year’s Christmas event and said a couple of late additions to the celebration were big hits.
“We added the miniature Ferris wheel and the train ride at the last minute and those were a couple of the most popular attractions,” he said, along with the petting zoo, a recurring attraction during All is Bright. “The kids were just tickled to death.”
Reeves continued by saying visitors seem to love the event downtown, but he is considering moving it to another downtown location he believes would be more accommodating and safer, the Mark Gulotta Waterfront Park.
“We can pool all of out resources there,” he said. “We won’t have to worry about trains and safety, although safety has never been an issue for us because we have so many police officers out there to make sure it’s safe.”
The All is Bright event is a fundraiser for Project Care, providing funds to the elderly struggling with utility payments. The Thanksgiving breakfast held about a month ago raises funds for the same cause.
Reeves said the Thanksgiving breakfast was also more successful this year than in years past.
“The sponsorship increased and we kept the cost down so we made some good money for the area’s elderly people,” he said.
The keynote speaker for the breakfast was Hollis Conway, a two-time Olympian Reeves said impressed him at a recent conference held by the Louisiana Municipal Association. After hearing Conway speak in Lake Charles at the conference, he contacted Ellie Hebert, who does public relations work for the City of Plaquemine.
“’We’ve got to get this guy,’ I told Ellie,,” Reeves said. “He’s a dynamic speaker and he did a really good job. Everyone was pleased with him at the breakfast.”
“We also had a couple of local ministers and they did really well so it was just a good day for Plaquemine all in all,” he continued.
The breakfast was the second annual for the city and the first for the presentation of the Community Achievement Award. This year’s recipient was Johnny “Boy” Wilbert.
“Johnny Boy is not only the owner of the oldest funeral home in Louisiana but he also plays taps at many Plaquemine and Iberville Parish events,” Reeves said. “He never charges us a penny and he rarely misses an event.”