“Can’t understand why we treat each other in this way taking up time with the silly, silly games we play. We’ve got our love and no matter how it’s said or done. We are one no matter what we do. We are one love will see us through. We are one and that’s the way it is. Sometimes I feel that we try and make each other sad the things we do. How we make each other feel so bad. We’ve got so much; we could all be having so much fun. We are one from the very start we are one deep down in your heart. We are one and that’s the way it is.”-Frankie Beverly and Maze

I learned three things this past week. First, we don’t have lies we have alternative facts; the difference between a riot and a protest is the participants and finally the same people that offended and insulted President Obama and his family for eight years are having a hissy fit over people’s reaction to Donald Trump. I’m remembering The Honorable Malcolm X, “The chickens have come home to roost”.

“It’s a family affair” The staff at Colin’s Restaurant arrived at Colin’s Monday night for a meeting; instead it was a surprise employee appreciation party including food and a top-shelf open bar.  Restaurant manager Chris Calvi and owners Dante and Candes, toasted the staff, thanked them for a great year, and wished them success in 2017. Chris, Dante and Candes showed off their mixing skills preparing specialty drinks or the staff.

Sarah Holley’s annual event at her attractive brownstone home continues to be a sought after invitation that guarantees to be a grand time with the perfect elements for a great house party, good food, good booze and good music. Friends and family who travelled up and down the east coast to attend were Sarah’s son Howard Holley Jr. and guest Sherrain, Arthur and Vernetta Bailey, Edward and Terri Tyler, James Simmons, David and Lisa Kelly, Roxanne Williams, Sharon McGriff-Myers, Jean Durr, Ida of Ida’s Idea Boutique in D.C. and her husband Robert.

Other guests dancing the night away were, Mayor Catherine Pugh, Comptroller Joan Pratt, Susan Parker, Jesse Murphy, Marsha Jews, Trudy McNair, Patricia Tunstall, Gaines Lansey, Lafayette Carr, Patricia Roselle, Robert White, Cori Ramos, Pat Thomas, Deborah Mason, Andre and Thea, Bob Cockey, David Costow, Judy Daks, Kevin Scott and Victor Holliday. People are still raving over the scrumptious food prepared by Chef Jerome Brown assisted by sous chef Frankie. Bartender Andre kept the libations flowing as we danced the night away to the music provided by DJ Cyrus.

Guests arrived all day Saturday at Murnell Cooper’s home to celebrate her birthday. She is such a grand host, greeting family and friends with a smile that can light up a room and an anecdote about her relationship to each one. I promised Murnell that I would not reveal her age this year as I did last year, but in five years her face will be on the Smucker’s glass, Praise the Lord Saints.

Among the guest joining the celebration and the delicious menu prepared by her granddaughter Bridgett James, were Goldie  Cashiers, Vonda Reid, Los Bonnie Barber, Darlene West, Lillian and Colvin Lemely, Richard and Flora Johnson, Beverly Keys, Sara Smalley, Rosemary Atkinson, Pat Roselle, Barbara Blount Armstrong, Sterling Garners and  Edith Graham. Special thanks to daughters Dr. Charlene Cooper-Boston, Myra James and grandson Michael James. Two of Murnell’s longtime friends age 92 and 94 surprised us when they revealed their age “good Black don’t crack.”

A gift of life celebration honoring Troy Lamonte Hardy’s 50th birthday was a purple and black themed party at the Horseshoe Casino. Kim Williams-Rowland and Bonita Hardy-Hicks hosted the event.  Guests joining in the celebration were Cleveland Hardy, Jimmy Hicks, godmother Deloris Williams, aunts, uncles, cousins, childhood and best friends too numerous to mention. The prominently displayed 4-foot money tree generously adorned with expressions of love in the ballroom was a huge success. Guests enjoyed the open bar and the bountiful buffet created “some enchanted evening.”  Invitees received unique gift bags to commemorate the joyous occasion.  The Afro extends our prayers and well wishes to Troy and the family.

“Stand! In the end you’ll still be you one that’s done all the things you set out to do Stand! There’s a cross for you to bear things to go through if you’re going anywhere Stand! For the things you know are right it’s the truth that the truth makes them so uptight Stand!”-Sly and the Family Stone

Barbara West enjoyed planning parties, trips and family gatherings, so it was not a surprise that her funeral and repast would be a social event. The repast held at Martin’s West were she volunteered as an event planner was the social event culminating a life well lived. Barbara was an amazing woman who spearheaded social changes during her career at Social Security, fighting battles and resistance to bring change in an unchanging environment. She fought her biggest battle with cancer until the end, never faltering in her faith and devotion to her family, friends and coworkers.

Family and friends joined Jannette Witmyer at MICA in the Fred Lazarus Center for a memorial celebration for her husband Tim Witmyer who died suddenly at their home. After the service where special friends Joyce Scott, Lea Gilmore, and Cash Hester, singing and providing words of comfort everyone gathered at SNAC by Nancy were good Kevin Brown had prepared a delicious repast.

“Sweet sweet bitter Love.”-Aretha Franklin

It was a bittersweet gathering as The Friday Night Bunch and friends gathered at Colin’s Restaurant the day President Obama left the White House to celebrate and reflect on the last eight years.