June has arrived in Rector with festivities galore, a full moon and even some much needed rain; not all on the same day of course. That would have been both tacky and impossible. We are having some pretty typical June weather and I am glad of that. Nice and warm without the searing quality of August fire. It is good to ease into summer. At least for now.
A little over 200 people made their way into the community center Saturday to pay tribute to our own Joey Pruett. Poor guy was worried sick that no one would come to the party. Even as members of the Clay County Arts Council were running around revising guest counts, adding tables, changing table arrangements to allow for more seating, he worried. And all for naught.
It was a great night for a great guy! The entertainment was wonderful. Scottish dancers fresh from the dance workshop directed by Sandy Furrer warmed up the audience. Group 1 was made up of Anna Wimberly, daughter of Ashley and Neal Wimberly, Morgan Garner, daughter of Tracy and Amy Garner, Olivia Sutherland, daughter of Carla Essman, Karrin Henderson, daughter of Nate and Heidi Henderson and Erin Baker, daughter of Elizabeth and Dax Fitzgerald and Kelly and Ann Baker.
Group 2 consisted of Sarah Robinson, daughter of Nate and Heidi Henderson and the late Josh Robinson, McKenzie Baker, Sarah Baker and Cecily Baker daughters of Jeffrey and Barbara Baker and Sophie Simmons, daughter of Jamie and Stephen Simmons.
Erin Baker then gave a dramatic reading from "Romeo and Juliet" by William Shakespear, directed by Whitney Conley.
Starting with Joey's first band experience, "Country Stache" was resurrected, then we witnessed it's metamorphosis into "Rockin' Country". Then came "Perfect Peace", "Patchwork" and "Doc's Friends." The musical genres ranged from blue grass to rock and roll to gospel. Although many members of these groups still live in the area, talent we get to enjoy often, several of them are no longer local and we really appreciated those that traveled far to be a part of this tribute to Joey. There was, of course, a reunion feeling to the whole thing that spread to the entire crowd.
Paula Benton presented Joey with a portrait she painted just to add her own bit of gratitude. A scholarship was given in Joey's name and a plague was presented to applaude all he has done for the community.
The evening wrapped up with a group that Joey still enjoys playing with and many of us make every effort to see when they perform. The Ultimate Oldies group were as full of energy and excitement as they always are.
Also honored Saturday night were the recipients of the Clay County Arts Council, Inc. scholarships for 2012. Kailyn Conley and Travis Lee Laughlin of Piggott High School, Ryan La Rue of Rector High School and Rocio Cavazos of Crowley's Ridge College were all on hand.
I also met some soon to be newcomers to Rector. Weldon and Melba Bradberry have purchased a house in Rector and plan to move here in a few months. No strangers to town of course, Linda Robinson was only one of their old friends that stopped to chat. I also got to hear a couple of their stories and I personally cannot wait to hear more from them.
Well enough about the gala. I want to say a few words about Lindsey Ford. She is currently on a mission trip to Kampala. What a moving way to spend the beginning of summer. We are all so proud of you, Lindsey and of the others that are with you. I know you will return with a heart full of love and you will know that you have left that much love and more with those you have touched.
For those of you who have not been following my facebook page, I feel the need to tell you that my "other worldly" housemates have been extremely active lately. Starting with a picture leaping off the wall to land several feet away, then getting up the next day to find my laptop with 20+ internet explorer windows open to Southwest .com and almost as many instances of the recycle bin open. It gave the distinct impression of a ghostly tantrum. Then my nook turned itself on (not me or anyone I noticed standing by) as it lay on the table beside me. So I have taken out the garbage and I am going to plan a trip today. And I have to get the formatting straightened out with the Nook for "We Were Army Wives". If anyone else has any different interpretations, please let me know. I like to keep Merlie happy.
I suppose I should close for today. Let me know what is going on with you. You can email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org or call me (870) 595-3173. You can even drop me a line at 514 West 3rd St., Rector AR 72461. Bye for now. Stay safe and enjoy today. It could be the best day ever.
One more thing about the Joey tribute. It was scheduled to run from 6:30 -- 10:00. Barbi Anderson opened the program at 6:01 and the closing remarks ended at 10:15. Pretty much on schedule. Thank you Barbi.
Bless our military everywhere.