‘We’ve got to go back to what small communities used to be’

Vinemont Schools to host 2nd annual Freedom Fest

Vinemont Schools will host the second annual Freedom Fest Aug. 5 from 5-8 p.m. (Sammy Confer for The Cullman Tribune)

VINEMONT, Ala. – Vinemont Schools will host their annual back-to-school event, the second annual Freedom Fest, on school grounds Friday, Aug. 5 from 5-8 p.m. The free event will include food, school supplies, inflatables, face painting, games, live music and a car show. Teachers, band members, football players and cheerleaders will also be on hand to meet and mingle with students, their families and community members.

Vinemont High School Principal Robin Netherton gave a little history on Freedom Fest.

“This will be our second year hosting this event. It evolved from one of the needs of the community, which was to have more events that involved our entire community, and allowed the churches and different organizations to get involved in serving the community,” he said. “We wanted to increase community engagement, so people from the high school talked and came up with the idea of having a fest to kick off the school year. We wanted to invite the entire community to come in and we gave all of our students free T-shirts. We want to make everyone feel included.”

Netherton said he feels Freedom Fest will help bring the community closer together year by year.

“The goal is just community involvement. Everybody at Vinemont has a sense of community, to feel like they’ve got a place, and to be connected. The churches are going to come out and host the majority of the event; they’ll invite people to the church and feed them and love them,” he said. “The whole idea is we’ve got to go back to what small communities used to be. They used to be about the people and serving each other, so this event, along with some other ones, will help build the Vinemont community up to a place where people want to live and where they’ll send their kids to school. We appreciate what a great community we have.”

He added, “From the founding of America, the churches have been instrumental in all of the good that is happening in America. In our community, the churches pour a lot into the people and they’re not charging a dime. They make sure that everybody can come eat free and get free school supplies, play games. The churches take care of that, and I have to give praise to them in the area. They don’t ask for anything in return; they just come out to serve and to love our people.”

This will be the first time a car show will be part of the event.

“It was one of the things that was an idea last year. I’ve never hosted a car show before. We wanted to have one this year at the middle school because there’s a lot of people in our community that have classic cars and that’s something that they usually enjoy seeing. The older crowd will enjoy seeing it,” Netherton said. 

He added, “We will have our mascot here for a while. We will have live music and we will try to have most of our teams introduce themselves on the stage so that the community can put a face to the name and know who’s representing our community.”

If your organization would like to volunteer, or if you are a musician or own a classic car and would like to be a part of the event, contact Rnetherton@ccboe.org.

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