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Sunday, May 26, 2024
HomeNewsArchivesPeace Day Organizers Taking Cause One Person at a Time

Peace Day Organizers Taking Cause One Person at a Time

The organizers of St. Croix’s International Peace Day celebration were not dismayed by a smaller-than-expected turnout Sunday.

"You build peace one person at a time," said Carol Stewart, one of the founder’s of the group All Ah We, which organized the event, as music and speakers entertained the crowd of about 80 at Frederiksted’s Veterans Memorial Park on the waterfront. "This is the first time for this event. We would like to have had more, but it’s not about the crowd, it’s about the message — peace."

At 3 p.m. the crowd began gathering at the park, setting up chairs in the shade, greeting each other, talking and laughing. The music played over the sound system would not have been out of place at a peace rally decades earlier, including "Peace Train," "Give Peace a Chance," "Let here Be Peace on Earth" and many other songs of similar sentiments.

At 4 p.m. the crowd, which had grown to about 70, was drawn to attention by conch shell courtesy of Junie Bomba. The program began with singer Leslie Highfield-Carter leading the audience in "Let There Be Peace on Earth." She was joined on stage by Owen Stewart, the 7-year-old grandson of Carol and Peter Stewart.

By the time musicians Bill Bass and Tom Jackson took the stage, the crowd had grown to about 80, and it continued to grow throughout the afternoon as a slate of performers culminated in an appearance by the Express Band, which drew an enthusiastic crowd.

Since 1982, the United Nations has designated an International Day of Peace, observed in many corners of the world. Monday, Sept. 21, is the actual day of the U.N. observance, Carol Stewart added, and the St. Croix event was scheduled for Sunday afternoon to allow more people to take part.

Peter Stewart said he and some friends were "sitting around, watching the moon and talking," and they realized they all wanted to do something to be involved in the Day of Peace. Their group had earlier been involved in this summer’s Hands Across St. Croix, an attempt to form a human chain linking hands between the forts in Christiansted and Frederiksted.

Everyone they contacted was enthusiastic and donated ther time, energy and services, Carol Stewart said.

Other performers included Eddie Russell, Doc Peterson, Bill Bass and Winnie "Oyoko" Loving.

For more information about All Ah We, call Heike Nilgen at 340-514-2196 or the Stewarts at 340-719-7564.

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