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Out & About in Cleveland

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Liberian Independence & Irish Food Fest

Saturday, July 26th, was mostly spent with events surrounding Liberian Independence Day which started off with a soccer tournament at Humphrey Park on Grovewood Avenue in Cleveland. Mr. Martin Zeinway, the President of the Liberian Association in Cleveland, had sent Margaret W. Wong and Associates a really nice letter asking us to attend so we drove over there and watched soccer for a little while.

Liberian Independence Day Soccer Jersey Liberian American Day Soccer Game Martin Zeinway Liberian Association of Cleveland and its Environs
 

What was really neat about this was that many of today's players were visiting Cleveland from Liberia (or other African nations) and other players came from Columbus or even New York to play with them here. We recalled another event that we attended at the Happy Dog around the time that the World Cup tournament was taking place where it was noted that foreign born people from countries where soccer is the Number 1 game just don't like soccer; they have an intense passion for it which was certainly apparent to us today as we listened to the discussion that was taking place amongst the players as they waited to go out on the field.

It was also really very fulfilling to meet a man named Mr. William Hookes who used our services when he immigrated to the United States from Liberia in 1980. What's more our office helped him bring three young people to the United States fairly recently who were Diamond Miller, Praise Miller and Victorious Hookes and we got to meet all three of them. Mr. Hookes said that the paperwork that we did was perfect and no one asked any questions. Mr. Hookes particularly praised Mr. Brian Marek from our office for his contribution.

In the early part of the evening, we stopped off for a few minutes at the East Side Irish American Club where the "Flavors of the East Side Food and Beverage Fest" had been taking place. Things were getting ready to wrap up by the time we arrived but we still had a half hour or so to have a plate of grilled potatoes (not french fries-rather unpeeled potatoes that had been cut into several pieces, grilled and served on a stick and are quite good) and listen to the Irish musical group "Craic" play some songs.

Craic Plays at Irish American Club
 

We said hello to our friend Mr. Francis McGarry of the Ancient Order of the Hibernians who had helped us obtain tickets to their banquet on St. Patrick's Day. We also gave our contact information to a person who has relatives in Mayo County in Ireland who someday might be in need of our services. When we asked about Mayo County we were told that the most of the Irish people who immigrate to the United States and settle in Cleveland are from there.

Later that evening we attended the Liberian Ball at St. Helena's Party Center on West 65th in Cleveland where we met and visited with some more people including Pastor Scott Low from Solon United Methodist Church who brought his family, all of whom have visited Liberia and have made friends with a lot of people there.

We sat at the same table as Mr. and Mrs. Delroy Bryan who are both involved in the Jamaican Cultural Association; an organization that we had sent a speaker to earlier his year. Mr. and Mrs. Delroy said that our speaker was very well received and told us thank Ms. Wong once again.

Later that evening we got to meet Ms. Janjay Brass who is involved with a group called Plant a Seed for a Child, Inc. and told us a little about it. After we got home, we looked up the website to find out more about it and learned that it is "an organization whose mission is to enable Liberian Children to obtain an education so that they may experience the joys of literacy, learn to use modern technology, and play their part in rebuilding society." This sounds like very worthy work and we extended to Ms. Brass our best wishes in this venture.

Ms. Janjay Brass at Liberian Americans of Cleveland and its Environs
 

Just before we left around 11pm we spoke with Mr. Oliver Sailey Jr. who was the official photographer both for the ball and for the soccer tournament. We both agreed that we had had a long day indeed.

Out & Aboutimwong