A parade of humanity

Published 12:00 am Sunday, March 7, 2004

Water Avenue wasn’t a street for cars on Saturday. Instead, Selmians and visitors roamed an avenue filled with vendors. Senses were filled with music as the smell of incense wafted through a hot March air. It was a day of celebration and laughter.

Rejoyce Dablah, owner of Second Generation Imports and Design, came from Atlanta on Friday to be a part of Jubilee. “I like it,” Dablah said. “There were a lot of people out here early in the day. So far, so good.”

Jubilee 2004 was Dablah’s first time in Selma. She heard about the event from several people who came last year and told her how fun it was. “I want to participate in the bridge crossing, but I may have to work my booth,” she said.

Email newsletter signup

Glen Lee, a Jubilee volunteer, was also hard at work on Saturday. On Friday he spent three hours assembling the stage, but focused on maintaining barricades on Saturday. “It’s hard considering, but not really because we had a good crew working,” Lee said about building the stage. “Everything’s been quite tremendously smooth.”

Deborah Evans, owner of African Art Atlanta, had her booth in the shade outside the offices of The Selma Times-Journal. “We’re always right here in this spot,” she said.

Evans has been to Jubilee for the past eight years. A resident of Union City, Ga., she returns for the cultural experience and to see people. In the past she’s spoken with U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters and Judge Joe Brown.

Jeannette Lee, who’s volunteered at Jubilee for three years, also enjoys the opportunity to see people at Jubilee. “It has been phenomenal,” she said. “We have got the crowd out today. It’s a part of seeing all ages, all groups, all sizes.”

Jeannette Lee said about 7,000 people had passed through Jubilee’s gates on Saturday. “You look at people’s expressions and can see that they enjoy it,” she said. “You see people here that you’ll only see once a year. It’s like a big family reunion.”

As if summoned by her words, Greg Williams walked through the entrance. Both live in Selma, but haven’t seen each other since last year’s Jubilee. “I came out to participate,” Williams said. “I came to meet friends I haven’t seen in years.”

Williams said he had already seen seven people on Saturday that he hadn’t seen in ages. “They don’t live here anymore, but they come back for this,” he said.