Colony sets tentative date for Colony Day this August, talks big name entertainment

Rev. James Fields, Jr. (center, in gray) joined Mayor Donnis Leeth and town council members Ethel Alexander, Melvin Hammond and Samuel Ashford, along with several local residents and representatives of neighboring communities, for the second Colony Day planning meeting Saturday afternoon. (W.C. Mann for The Cullman Tribune)

COLONY, Ala. – Colony’s town government on Saturday met with a group of interested locals and representatives of neighboring communities to talk about plans for a proposed “Colony Day” celebration later this year. Event coordinator/councilman Melvin Hammond was joined by fellow council members Ethel Alexander and Samuel Ashford, Mayor Donnis Leeth and Rev. James Fields, Jr. at the table. They got input from representatives of some of Colony’s founding families, as well as coordinators of the Warrior Day and North Jefferson Day celebrations from Warrior. Cullman County Commission chairman candidate Jeff Clemons and his wife even stopped by for a few minutes.

Two major announcements came out of the meeting:

  • Planners set a tentative date of Aug. 8-9, 2020 for the celebration, contingent on the availability of proposed entertainers. The main community celebration would take place Saturday, with local church events and a possible gospel concert Sunday.
  • Hammond said that he is in talks to get Candi Staton to perform at the event. Staton, a Colony native, is a Grammy-nominated Southern Soul/R&B/Gospel singer who is a member of the Alabama Music Hall of Fame and the Christian Music Hall of Fame. 


Reaching out for a big family reunion

Leeth revealed that he has heard from people as far away as Ohio and California who were asking about the date, so they could make plans to attend. Fields encouraged representatives of historic Colony families to reach out to their relatives outside Colony and called for the gathering of names and addresses for members of Colony families living across the country, so event fliers can be mailed. Planners also discussed the use of social media and broadcast platforms to get out information.

Getting organized

Fields pushed for the establishment of planning and event committees, and members were appointed to a few committees right on the spot. He called for committees to cover food, entertainment, outreach, publicity, finance, community history, recreation and cleanup.

In setting up the first committees, Fields told the crowd that Cullman-area businesses and organizations will support Colony Day if Hammond can show them a good plan when he goes to talk to them. He emphasized, though, that a well-organized effort must already be underway when Hammond goes.

Said Fields, “Melvin’s job is to appoint us to a committee, and then we just need to go to work.”

After the meeting, Hammond told The Tribune, “Colony has a rich history and is very unique. Maybe we can start a tradition where every year or two, they can get together and enjoy the past and future. Hopefully, the next Colony Days will draw more attention to the Colony.”

The planning team will meet next Saturday, March 21 at Colony Town Hall.

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W.C. Mann