Various NAACP members filled the Eureka Women’s Club kitchen yesterday, keeping food warm and passing out plates to those who were in attendance.
The Eureka chapter of the NAACP was hosting their 48th-annual Soul Food Dinner and provided a full meal that included fried chicken, greens, cornbread, macaroni & cheese, sweet potatoes and dessert.
“Almost the same people who cooked last year came back to cook again. I think that says a lot because it is hard work to cook, serve and clean up–but it’s really fun,” said Sharrone Blanck who is the NAACP Events & Membership Coordinator.
The event is the NAACP’s largest fundraiser and its success is due in part to the different people who work together to make the event possible.
The upbeat atmosphere was aided by DJ & NAACP member Lorna Bryant’s mix between Cinco de Mayo inspired tunes and songs that are staples in the Black community. At one point, community members and students joined in to dance to the popular “Cha Cha Slide” song by DJ Clasper.
Roman, a freshman History major at HSU attended the event and went home with enough food to eat for upcoming finals week.
“I liked the food it was an ineffable display of unity in a remote area of minorities,” he said.
The DJ played R&B group Tony! Toni! Toné! “Anniversary” for Second Vice-President Safar Ghaffari and his wife Lori–who had their first date that same day 43-years ago in 1975. Seven months later they married.
“The power of love & respect for others will overcome and conquer disparities,” Ghaffari said.
He also shared that the key to a lasting marriage is love and healthy and respectable debates. He applies this to his everyday life and this has taught him to have compassion for others despite different viewpoints.
Ghaffari also touched on the importance of looking beyond materialism in life. “Man gives awards and God gives rewards,” he said.
“We look for reward in protecting people’s civil rights. Sometimes it is not popular but that is what the NAACP stands for.”
Joy Soll works in the Academic & Career Advising Center at Humboldt State and drove 30-minutes from Westhaven to attend the soul food dinner.
“The food was great, the music was fun and we happened to run into friends,” said Soll. “I totally appreciate what they are doing and their stance in terms of Josiah Lawson and everything that is going on, so I really just wanted to support.”