Peace Together website: Meet your neighbors and begin to build a stronger, united community.
November 3, 2018 Peace Together, an inter-faith/multicultural community-building organization for which I serve on the leadership team, held a 3-mile walk, not to demonstrate, but to spend time together as neighbors and to make new friends.
I couldn’t attend one of the meetings, and Rabbi Charlie was filling me in on what I’d missed. Apparently, they wanted balloons at the end of the walk (along with music and a food truck and face painting – not quite a carnival, but fun and festive) and he said they were looking for someone who makes balloon animals. And I said, “Well, I do that.” and he looked at me and said, “You do?!?!?” And I smiled and replied, “it is amazing sometimes, the random collection of things in my skill set.”
So my 13-year old daughter and I geared up, dressed alike and hung out together at the ending point:
My favorite balloon of the day? This started out as a bunch of bananas, but without a marker, it is hard to see it. Since we popped a black one, it made sense to put them together. It is therefore a smiley emoji, otherwise known as “BananaMan,” which I promptly added to my own swan hat.
At one point, my daughter turned to me and said “some of the people I know from school are here” and I, of course, figured that at her age, she’d be embarrassed by that but apparently I am still her hero, and she said she was proud to be hanging out with her mom wearing balloons on our heads. She really loves me. It’s humbling.
Kids ask for the craziest stuff. Some asked for swords, which I get it’s a thing, but it seemed rather out of place to make weaponry at a peace event. The most challenging request of the day was a panda. I’ve never done one of those before and didn’t really have time to figure it out. The imagination is a powerful ally – this kid was really willing to play along, which is a good thing.
I think the most memorable aspect of events like this is the reminder that it takes so many people working together to pull it off – and the Peace Together team did an awesome job with all the details. I so appreciate the efforts from each leader, volunteer, and vendor that made that event what it was: a beautiful, intentional saying YES to our community. We need everyone to make this happen.
Our local news channel ran a short video; here’s a link to the Peace Together Facebook post of that broadcast.
Peace Together. Neither of these word concepts stands alone well. Peace doesn’t happen without together and together is miserable without peace. We need both.