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Vocal Point: Valleyfest organizers deserve city’s applause

Last Friday was the Hearts of Gold parade that was the start of the Valleyfest community celebration for Spokane Valley citizens.

I was so proud as my group of six friends and I walked back to our cars, talking and sharing how our community has been led by very good leaders and hard workers.

Peggy Doering is one example of hard work and good leadership. Her selection of people to be the grand marshals to lead this year’s parade shows that she is aware of hard workers and valued leaders who do not give up. I clapped hard as I saw Pam Almeida, Barbara Bennett, Craig Goodwin and Lynnette Romney, all workers who provide food for the hungry, riding in the grand marshal cars. Good work, everyone!

We were at a luncheon at noon on Friday, hosted by Mary Alice Nelson, the Spokane Valley Senior Center president. She was celebrating the senior center being at CenterPlace for five active years, in spite of the naysayers’ prediction that inactivity would happen if we moved into the deluxe building of CenterPlace. Mrs. Nelson is an excellent leader, unafraid to move ahead with our activities.

At the luncheon, she honored the oldest member, 95 years old, belonging to the group. Along with him were two 93-year-olds, a 92-year-old and a 90-year-old. These members are still participating.

Mayor Tom Towey, Councilman Bill Gothmann, City Manager Mike Jackson and CenterPlace director Mike Stone were all invited and enjoyed the celebration and remarked on the activities and growth in our membership over the years.

Since my family has lived in the Valley 38 years, we know of the struggles of incorporation and community building. I was so proud at the parade as I watched the floats and representations of community business. They have built our city so citizens of this Valley can shop, dine at fine restaurants or enjoy entertainment right here in our own town. We all received invitations from these businesses for free meals or to shop with a big discount. It was enjoyable to see many young families watching the parade and hearing them plan to attend the following two days of activities.

It was truly community friendship brought on by Valleyfest. Thanks to all the leaders and volunteers who provided Valleyfest for us.

Margaret Cadwallader lives in Spokane Valley.