Just as the cries of "Roll Tide" and "War Eagle" signal the arrival of Fall, so do the sights of Fall Festivals, Pumpkin Patches and benefit yard sales signify that the long hot days of Summer are finally over.
One of those celebrations coming up this week, on Saturday, October 18, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., is the Saraland Area Chamber of Commerce's 19th Annual Harvest Festival, which takes place in the grassy area in front of Saraland WalMart, 1095 Industrial Parkway.
This yearly event will feature arts and crafts and other vendors, a Scarecrow Contest, activities for children, fun, food and entertainment.
Chair Donna Jones noted a couple of participants, specifically Tracy Lister-Mabrey, whose art includes nature scenes, race cars and collegiate logos and mascots rendered in acrylics on wild turkey wings and tail fans. And Mabrey's parents, Billy and Gwen Lister and their dog, Spud, will be there in all their Alabama football finery--Spud in his Bear Bryant hat, the Listers showing their "Tide Ride" trike.
Saraland Lions Club members will have a booth at the fair and will take orders for their fruit sale. Those who can't make it to the Harvest Festival can call Martin Walker, 675-8638, for information on ordering their Christmas fruit. Jones said that it's not too late to rent a space to show acceptable wares at the Harvest Fest. Call her at 675-4444 for more information. For details on the accompanying 8K and 5K Races and 1-Mile Fun Run/Walk, hosted by North Mobile YMCA, call Rita Wright, 679-8877.
Saturday, October 18, 5-7 p.m. is "Sunset in the Patch" at the Tanner Williams United Methodist Church 3rd Annual Pumpkin Patch at 1550 Grand Bay Wilmer Road in the Tanner Williams community. Hamburgers will be available for purchase (as will pumpkins, naturally) and a band will play at 6 p.m. Activities in this Patch go on all through the month of October, and Chair Jane Cooley said that one of those, school field trips, can be arranged to for Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. Call 778-9283 for details.
American Legion District 33 Annual Picnic and Flag Retirement Ceremony are Sunday, October 19 at AL Post 250, 10950 Dauphin Island Parkway at Bayley's Corner in Theodore. The public, and especially all veterans, are invited. In addition to the above activities, there will be a baked sale, an auction, a raffle and several other events after the flag ceremony. For information, call 973-1157.
The annual Fall Yard Sale at St. Thomas Catholic Church, 251 North Craft Highway in Chickasaw, is Saturday, October 18, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. "Yard Sale" is actually a misnomer; goods for this event usually fill several rooms, and this year, said Chair Cheryl Overton, some of the items available for purchase are sofas, TVs, a pool table, Christmas and other seasonal goods, Dodger Baseball collectibles "and much more."
The Town of Dauphin Island and Mobile County Health Department are sponsoring a flu clinic, Friday, October 17, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. at the City Council chambers. The fee is $15 per shot; bring Medicare/Medicaid card, if applicable.
Our Mobile County area is filled with people who go above and beyond what's expected of them--they see a job they can do or a need they can fill, and step forward to do it, making life better for those around them. One of those people is Lori Bosarge of Coden.
Bosarge owns La Belle Embroidery in Coden, but her business has nothing to do with her activism. She's president of the South Bay Communities Alliance, which was formed in 2007 to help local residents get back into housing after Hurricane Katrina.
Now, working with a dedicated group of volunteers who, she said, "know the true meaning of charity" (particularly her good friend Pat Creel), she's helped organize many fundraisers and events to help her neighbors.
Basing activities at the Coastal Response Center on Highway 188, the group keeps a well-stocked food pantry clothes closet for those in need. They've held a Veterans' Appreciation Day, a "Hopping for Teila Graham" benefit that both raised funds for a family whose child had medical issues but also offered a day of fun for community children and SBCA is currently in the process of collecting Coats for Kids to be distributed in early December. Call 824-7265 to make a contribution.
Bosarge is also active in the Bayou La Batre Area Chamber of Commerce and other organizations that she feels empowers people and educates citizens.
Of her charitable work in the Coden area, Lori Bosarge said, "I know God has a plan. We're all here for a reason (and) we all have something to share." By working together, she said, anything is possible. ""It takes following your heart and loving your community; God takes care of the rest," she said.
And of her activitism in environmental concerns and humanity issues in south Mobile County and particularly in the Bayou La Batre area, she said: "The Bayou is a special place. It is important that we not only nurture one another with goodness and kindness, but also (do the same for) our environment. This is our way of life, the water, salty air and fishing. It is our heritage, our children's future. It is important to embrace and cherish what we've been given."
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Covering the Alabama Gulf Coast, including Mobile, Points North, and Points South