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A 2019 Homecoming “Thank You” message from Kevin Otis, Administrator, Masonic Home for Children at Oxford:
We realize that good weather is important, but realize even more that the real success of Homecoming is the help so many provided. MHCO especially wants to thank everyone who lined College Street to watch the parade, enjoyed the BBQ, participated in the activities, and danced to the music!
So many people and groups were involved in making this weekend enjoyable for everyone. This year, MHCO had amazing volunteer supports from United Rentals, Wells Fargo, the Rainbow Girls, several individuals, alumni, masons, and MHCO Ambassadors. Their help allowed the staging to be more effective and timelier than in past years.
The Alumni hit a record with the Charlie Burton Chip Shots for Children Golf Tournament. Big thanks to Bill and Tina Gilreath for chairing the tourney and for their entire family’s contributions to the weekend. Many may not realize how much extra work goes on behind the scenes to promote the alumni portion of the weekend. Special thanks to all who help the alumni truly enjoy coming back home.
The BBQ teams continue to increase and are energized to participate. The Soggy Bottom Boys BBQ Team’s first Homecoming was three festivals ago when Hurricane Matthew washed out everything but our enthusiasm and commitment. They have been committed ever since. Before Homecoming they do a preparation cook-off. They receive donations for anyone wanting to sample what they prepared. This year they contributed $555 to go toward the pool.
We are also blessed that the Hub had two teams including Tobacco Wood. It is important and fantastic for local businesses to want to participate and help the Home. Let them all know your appreciation. Special thanks to Brother Charles Barrett for chairing the BBQ competition.
The Shrine Parade was impressive, and several more units participated this year. There were smiles on the faces of children of all ages as the parade went over one hour! The community groups were a hit also as three bands, three scout groups, and dance and karate teams shared their support for MHCO. Big thanks to Frank Long, Gene Purvis, and Chris Richardson for their continued leadership for the parade.
Oxford Police Department Oxford Fire Department, the Sheriff’s Office, EMS, and the City of Oxford continue to support the Home in all areas, and this year was exceptional and safe. We applaud all they do to keep our kids, staff and the entire community safe.
Special thanks to our friends in the media as they helped MHCO get the word out so everyone knows the family-friendly fun that is available. We appreciate all their ongoing support. Thanks to Oxford Public Ledger, The Daily Dispatch, 98.3 FM, and WIZS 100.1 FM/1450 AM. We appreciate you sharing our good news. Special thanks to Granville County Public Schools for allowing bookbag flyers to be sent with the children to inform their families.
The music and entertainment were extraordinary this year. Special thanks to the Tams and Tonez as they got everyone dancing and grooving. As always, we appreciate Russell Ragland Productions, Ted’s Twisted Balloons, Scrap Exchange (sponsored by Creedmoor Rotary Club), Lumpy’s Ice Cream, Sheetz, and Gaming Unplugged.
Finally, we would like to thank the Board, staff and children for all their support and effort. The cottage booths are always a hit and the proceeds go toward cottage special needs and events. Special recognition to Board Members Dewey Preslar and the Andrew Jackson Boys for cooking for everyone on Friday, Nicki Perry for staying at the cottage booths all day, Don Steichen for his work on the float, and Tony Cozart for helping load up the fencing. To all, we hoped we thanked you personally, and if not, we appreciate each and every one of you.
What we collectively do for Homecoming is fantastic, but what we accomplish for the children every day is the really impressive work. If you know a family going through troubled times, please let them know to consider MHCO. If you would like to be a houseparent and help children overcome challenges and develop every day, please consider applying. If you want to help children today and tomorrow, consider setting up a recurring gift.
For any information please visit MHCO’s webpage www.mhc-oxford.org or call 919-693-5111. The children beam from the light you help shine.
Thank you all!