Tag Archives: Juneteenth

Juneteenth at Reed Bingham State Park 2024-06-22

Food and activities for children will be provided by Fannie Gibbs and Macedonia Community Foundation.

WWALS will provide boats for new paddlers at this gathering of people from Brooks, Cook, and Tift Counties, Georgia, and beyond in celebration of Juneteenth.

When: 11 AM, Saturday, June 22, 2024

Put In: Reed Bingham State Park Beach, 542 Reed Bingham Rd, Adel, GA 31620. Take I-75 Exit 39, turn west on GA 37, right on Evergreen Church Road (CR 99), left on Reed Bingham SP Road (CR 221), in through the gate and across the dam, and the beach is on your right, in Colquitt County.

GPS: 31.162563, -83.548506

[Boating and family fun at Juneteenth 2021]
Boating and family fun at Juneteenth 2021

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Video: Fannie Gibbs Begins WWALS Webinars 2024-01-11

Thanks, Fannie Marie Jackson Gibbs, for the first WWALS Webinar 2024-01-11.

[Fannie Gibbs, first WWALS Webinar and sample slides]
Fannie Gibbs, first WWALS Webinar and sample slides

Fannie Marie Jackson Gibbs of Brooks County, Georgia, has long been active in issues near the Little and Withlacoochee Rivers, especially involving African-American family history. She talked about Brooks County Georgia Settlers, family history, Old and New Macedonia Cemeteries, the Little River, Okapilco Creek, the annual Juneteenth celebrations she organizes at Reed Bingham State Park Lake where WWALS brings boats, and the ongoing sewage problems in Quitman.

Here’s the video: Continue reading

Fannie Gibbs Begins WWALS Webinars 2024-01-11

Update 2024-01-14: Video: Fannie Gibbs Begins WWALS Webinars 2024-01-11.

Hahira, Georgia, December 26, 2023 — WWALS Webinars is a new monthly series of lunchtime talks via zoom about topics related to the Suwannee River Basin.

On Thursday, January 11, 2024, from noon to 1PM, we are starting with Fannie Marie Jackson Gibbs of Brooks County, Georgia, long active in issues near the Little and Withlacoochee Rivers, especially involving African-American family history. She will talk about the ongoing sewage problems in Quitman, the annual Juneteenth celebrations she organizes at Reed Bingham State Park Lake where WWALS brings boats, family history, and anything else she wants to discuss.

[Fannie Gibbs in a boat at Reed Bingham State Park, Junteenth 2020]
Fannie Gibbs in a boat at Reed Bingham State Park, Junteenth 2020

“We thank Fannie Gibbs for speaking at WWALS River Revue 2023 in September, and we welcome her back to speak longer in this first WWALS Webinar,” said WWALS President Sara Jay Jones.

“I’m honored to have worked with Fannie for many years, and I hope you will all zoom in to hear what she has to say,” said Suwannee Riverkeeper John S. Quarterman.

Register in advance for this meeting:
https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZAuf-igpjsuG9JKDeCUtmqgxujGcIkFZIz3 Continue reading

Winners: Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest 2023-09-22

Hahira, GA, September 25, 2023 — Hahira, Georgia, September 25, 2023 — Ten musicians wrote songs and seven sang them, about the delights of the waters of the Suwannee River Basin and the need to preserve them against numerous threats. Jane Fallon came all the way from Dunedin, Florida, to the Turner Arts Center in Valdosta, Georgia, to sing a story about legendary Sun Daughters reflecting on a proposed mine near the Okefenokee Swamp, the headwaters of the Suwannee River. The three judges marked her high on storytelling and presenting the value of the waters, on originality of lyrics and music, and on performance, with extra credit for naming waterways. She took home First Prize in the Sixth Annual Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest.

[Winners: Suwannee Riverkeeper; Cindy Bear and Franc Robert, Best Folk; Jane Fallon, First Prize; Bacon James, Best from Outside; Kyle Bird Chamberlain and David Rodock, tie for Best from Inside; Chamberlain, Best Blues; Rodock, Best AmeriKinda; Keven Stephenson, Best Country --Chuck Roberts]
Suwannee Riverkeeper with the Winners: Cindy Bear and Franc Robert, Best Folk; Jane Fallon, First Prize; Bacon James, Best from Outside; Kyle Bird Chamberlain and David Rodock, tie for Best from Inside; Chamberlain, Best Blues; Rodock, Best AmeriKinda; Kevin Stephenson, Best Country; and Robert Thatcher (not pictured). Photo: Chuck Roberts

Jane Fallon said, “Thank you for the honor in recognizing my song ‘Chant For The Okefenokee’ in your contest. It is always a special feeling to sing a song for an audience that truly understands its meaning. Thank you also for the work you do in trying to preserve the waterways. It is so important.”

Here is the first half of her lyrics: Continue reading

Ten Songwriters in Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest in WWALS River Revue

Update 2023-09-06: WWALS River Revue on WKUB 105.1 FM 2023-09-06

Hahira, GA, August 16, 2023 — All ten songs were so good we couldn’t decide, so we accepted them all as finalists. We’ve got six songwriters from Florida, three from Georgia, and one from Tennessee. Genres range from easy-listening pop to a mining protest chant. Come hear them at the Finals of the Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest, 6-10 PM, Friday evening, September 22, 2023, at the Turner Center for the Arts, Valdosta, Georgia. Also enjoy a catered sit-down meal, speakers, a silent auction, and a kayak raffle.

[WWALS River Revue Flyer 2023]
WWALS River Revue Flyer 2023
PDF

“Traditionally we extend the song submission deadline twice, but we didn’t need to this time,” said longtime organizing committee member and new WWALS Board member Scotti Jay.

Follow this link for tickets, sponsorship opportunities, and more:

https://www.betterunite.com/WWALS-wwalsriverrevue2023/

WWALS Executive Director Gretchen Quarterman said, “Your ticket or sponsorship helps support everything WWALS does, from water quality tests, paddle outings and swimming & boating lessons, to chainsaw cleanups, and beyond to advocacy to stop trash at its sources, strip mines, and pipelines. We work for water trails, solar power, and the Right to Clean Water, with growing engagement for youth and marginalized communities.”

“We’re gonna rock the autumn equinox,” said organizing committee chair and WWALS President Sara Jay Jones. “Thanks to our sponsors so far: Georgia Power, Brooksco Dairy, Landis International, Michael Smith, Clyde Butcher Gallery, Great Dame, Georgia Beer Company, Azalea City Woman’s Club, Agri-Supply, Olympia Bend Shooting Range, and Jack’s Chophouse. You, too, can be a sponsor!”

These are the ten songwriter finalists, in alphabetical order, with a bit they wrote about themselves: Continue reading

Song submission extension and Headliner for Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest in WWALS River Revue

Update 2023-08-13: PSA and flyer for WWALS River Revue: come hear speakers and ten finalists in the Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest

Hahira, GA, August 3, 2023 — We’ve got some songs, but we want more, so the organizing committee has extended the deadline another week for the Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest, to August 9, 2023. And we have a headliner, Katherine Ball.

[Trimmed Songwriting Flyer 2023]
PDF

“Submissions can be songs about any river, stream, spring, sink, swamp, lake, or pond in the Suwannee River Basin or Estuary (except not the Santa Fe Basin; that has its own contest),” said Suwannee Riverkeeper John S. Quarterman. “For those selected as finalists, in September the three judges will award the First Prize of $300, with $50 prizes for Best Song from Within the Suwannee River Basin and Best Song from Without, as well as plaques for Best Song in each genre.”

Here’s the entry form:
https://forms.gle/ZPbfnnLj5ruum5xk6

“Thanks to Katie for playing for us all,” said WWALS President Sara Jay Jones. “We’re gonna rock the Autumn Equinox.”

Katherine Ball is a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and elemental artist bringing serenity and surrealism to the stage.

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Last Day to send in your song for the Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest in WWALS River Revue 2023-08-02

Songwriters, you can still send in your song today:
https://forms.gle/gxPja2ywz7TmEm9F9

If you get into the Finals, the judges will decide in the Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest in the WWALS River Revue at the Turner Center for the Arts in Valdosta, GA, 6-10 PM, Friday, September 22, 2023. The judges are Joe Smothers from Lowndes County, Georgia, Anna Stange from Madison County, Florida, and Tony Buzella from Columbia County, Florida.

[Songwriting Flyer 2023]
Songwriting Flyer 2023
PDF

“I’m very pleased to welcome Joe Smothers and Tony Buzella back again, plus new judge Anna Stange,” said WWALS President Sara Jay Jones. “We’re gonna rock the Autumn Equinox.”

Thanks to our sponsors so far, Brooksco Dairy, Landis International, Michael Smith, Georgia Beer Company, Azalea City Womans Club, Agri-Supply, and Georgia Power. You, too, can be a sponsor!
https://www.betterunite.com/WWALS-wwalsriverrevue2023/

For more about the Contest the WWALS Revue, and WWALS, see:
https://wwals.net/?p=62712

 -jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®

You can help with clean, swimmable, fishable, drinkable, water in the 10,000-square-mile Suwannee River Basin in Florida and Georgia by becoming a WWALS member today!
https://wwals.net/donations/

Judges announced for Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest in WWALS River Revue

Update 2023-08-03: Song submission extension and Headliner for Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest in WWALS River Revue

Hahira, GA, July 27, 2023 — The judges for the Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest in the WWALS River Revue are Joe Smothers from Lowndes County, Georgia, Anna Stange from Madison County, Florida, and Tony Buzella from Columbia County, Florida. Joe and Tony have judged before; Anna is new to this Contest.

“I’m very pleased to welcome Joe Smothers and Tony Buzella back again, plus new judge Anna Stange,” said WWALS President Sara Jay Jones. “We’re gonna rock the Autumn Equinox.”

[Songwriting Flyer 2023]
Songwriting Flyer 2023
PDF

Judge Joe Smothers is from Reidsville, NC, lives in Valdosta, and often plays The Salty Snapper, with a second home in Cortez, FL, with his wife Murphy. Joe’s mom Betty purchased a Stella guitar at the local pawn shop when he was thirteen. Born in the Piedmont area of North Carolina in 1950, he toured with his teenage inspiration, the legendary Doc Watson, and played on more than a dozen albums with him. Joe has performed at every Merle Fest (31) and was asked to perform at Doc’s funeral. Joe toured extensively with Jack Lawrence as a supporting act for John Prine, Leo Kottke and Emmylou Harris, to name a few. He has released two albums: These Things I Know, and ‘Terpretations. His song “The Three Buglers” — a mix of fiction and history on Taps — won him a first place at the Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield, KS, in 2007.

“We are excited to see and hear the talented songwriters and discuss future water protection goals,” said new organizing committee member Matt Prentice.

Judge Anna Stange moved to Madison, Continue reading

Juneteenth and River Ferries: Speakers in WWALS River Revue 2023-09-22

Update 2023-07-27: Judges announced for Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest in WWALS River Revue.

Hahira, GA, July 20, 2023 — We have two excellent speakers for the first-ever WWALS River Revue. Fannie Gibbs will talk about how her extensive family history research ties into Juneteenth and our rivers and creeks. Ken Sulak will talk about “Paddling into the Past: Finding Florida in the 1800s, Trails from Georgia, and Early Border Ferries.”

[2023-07-20--WWALS-River-Revue-0001-crop]
PDF

“We’ve worked with Fannie and Ken for years, and we hope you’ll like what they have to say as much as we do,” said Suwannee Riverkeeper John S. Quarterman.

This first-ever WWALS gala is an indoor fundraising gala, with catered sit-down meal, speakers, silent auction, and kayak raffle. It will be held 6-10 PM, Friday, September 22, 2023, at the Turner Center for the Arts in Valdosta, Georgia.

Follow this link for tickets, sponsorship opportunities, how to contribute to the silent auction, and more:

https://www.betterunite.com/WWALS-wwalsriverrevue2023/ Continue reading

Cancelled: Juneteenth at Reed Bingham State Park, Little River, Reed Bingham State Park Beach, 2023-06-17

Update 2023-06-16: Cancelled due to weather reports.

[Outing Cancelled]
Outing Cancelled

More: For more WWALS outings and events as they are posted, see the WWALS outings web page, https://wwals.net/outings/. WWALS members also get an upcoming list in the Tannin Times newsletter.

 -jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®

You can help with clean, swimmable, fishable, drinkable, water in the 10,000-square-mile Suwannee River Basin in Florida and Georgia by becoming a WWALS member today!
https://wwals.net/donations