County Commissioners have issued a Proclamation declaring Nov. 9-16 Highlands County Week of the Family. This is the fourth year that the commissioners have set aside a week to pay tribute to families, and we salute the board for again recognizing the importance of family.
Impetus for the proclamation came from Bette Prine, founder and chair of Highlands County Week of the Family. “In today’s busy, technological world filled with so many outside distractions, it’s easy for family members to be pulled in many different directions. We don’t want families to lose sight of the importance of spending quality time together,” she said.
Prine says it’s the simple things that can make a family stronger.
This year, Week of the Family is advocating that families choose at least one night a week when all family members can be home doing things together. Besides eating a meal together, activities might include preparing the meal and, after dinner, playing a game, watching a movie, listening to music or working on a family or community project.
“Keep conversations positive, look for the good in one another, compliment one another, and use the time to connect spiritually and instill family and community values and responsibilities,” Prine said.
This year, as in years past, Highlands County Week of the Family also will sponsor a Celebration of the Family, a special event which will take place Saturday, Nov. 16, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Bert J. Harris, Jr. Agricultural Center at U.S. 27 South and George Boulevard in Sebring.
This very popular event has been held each year, and drew over 400 participants and 32 vendors last year.
A Boy Scout Color Guard comprised of Scouts from various Highlands County troops will lead the opening ceremonies. Reverend Cecil Hess, Palms of Sebring chaplain, will deliver the invocation. Mayor George Hensley has been invited to give the welcoming remarks.
Live entertainment will follow with performances by the Mountain Dew Cloggers, Heyman’s Martial Arts Academy, Sebring Middle School Chorus, Dance Unlimited, and other local talent.
A game lane will feature a wide variety of games and crafts for children of different ages.
The Highlands Art League will sponsor a Children’s Art Contest for children up to 8 years of age, and Week of the Family will sponsor an essay contest for fourth-graders. The topic will be “What Family Means to Me.” Small cash prizes will be awarded.
The Palms of Sebring has graciously offered to cater a child-friendly lunch, prepared by Chef Gentleman Mac.
Vendor and exhibitor booths will be located inside and outside the building. Each vendor and exhibitor is being asked to provide educational, hands-on activities or a door prize.
This year, Week of the Family would like to receive feedback from attendees. In return for providing comments, each respondent will receive a cupcake, compliments of Publix Supermarket.
The Celebration of the Family event is made possible through generous support from local companies and community-based organizations.
Visit the website at www.highlandsountyweekofthefamily.org to find out more about Highlands County Week of the Family. You also can contact Prine at 863- 386-1791 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.