“Got everything but snow,” is the repeating line in Jimmy Buffet’s song, “Christmas in the Caribbean”. With no snow and often warm temperatures, individuals who still don Santa and Mrs. Claus, elf, and assorted other holiday costumes deserve an extra round of thanks. Devontae TP Miller, playing Santa Claus and Chamere Littlejohn as Mrs. Claus, both teachers from SBC Community Development Corporation after school care program, delighted children Sunday, December 19, 2021 at Roby George Park in Homestead.

Sharon E.A. Coleman, Program Development Coordinator, described the event. “The 3rd Annual Cookies & Crafts Holiday Extravaganza in Southwest Homestead creates a day of free art activities for local families. On Sunday, December 19th, the City of Homestead Councilwoman Jenifer N. Bailey along with the Southwest Advisory Committee & Artwalk Presents hosted a day full of art activities, local performances, and holiday cheer free to the community. The event at Roby George Park offered ten interactive art stations including decorating stones with artistic and motivational messages that were placed around the park to bring positivity and holiday cheer to residents year-round. Families also enjoyed icees, hot chocolate and cookies by Snowie, and photos with Santa Claus & Mrs. Claus by Smiles to Go Photobooth & SBC Community Development Corporation, a candy station, and connecting with local organizations like Greater New Mt. Zion Youth Department. Performances from Greater Miami Youth Symphony, Prodigy Dance Studio, and a runway show with Homestead Native Ms. Florida (US Continental) 2021-2022 Lolisa Torbert were the highlights of entertainment. The event was largely attended by the community along with City of Homestead Council Members. Volunteers from nonprofit organizations Impact Painting, SPROUT, Movement Church, and Intentional Provisions Outreach IPO made the experience great for every child.”

Coleman also provided a Facebook video tour of activities, stopping for greetings along the way. She moved among the crowd and paused for comments from Councilwoman Bailey. “Thank you to everyone who put this together. As you can see, everyone is having a good time and it’s all because of amazing community partners, fabulous producers and a lot of holiday cheer.”

From a fire truck on hand, talented performances, to paint in multiple ways, there were engaging activities for all ages. Facebook posts reflected the day’s fun. “Absolutely beautiful!!!, I enjoy seeing community outreach. Great job”; “Really Nice! Love it!!!”; and “This is an awesome event!”.

The event was sponsored by This Is For The Kids nonprofit; Miami-Dade County Commissioners Kionne McGhee and Danielle Cohen Higgins; City of Homestead Mayor Steven D. Losner, Councilwoman Patricia Fairclough-Staggers and Erica G. Avila, and Councilman Larry Roth. 

For more information on upcoming arts events produced by Artwalk Presents, go to www.artwalkhomestead.com or email artwalkhomestead@gmail.com.  

The event was also made possible with the support of the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs and the Cultural Affairs Council, the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of County Commissioners.

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