Honoring innovative, involved residents
HUNTINGTON -- Some of the city's most involved residents were honored Thursday during Create Huntington's fifth annual Recognition Ceremony at the Frederick in downtown Huntington.
More than 80 people were honored for their work in various organizations from the Wild Ramp to the Boys and Girls Club and everything in between.
Will Holland, president of the Create Huntington board, said the ceremony was all about honoring those who are trying to improve Huntington.
"It's just about their mindset and being part of the movement to make the community better," he said. "We honor anybody who wants to contribute to the community."
Create Huntington, which launched about five years ago, is a grassroots support network that empowers people to effect positive change in their community, according to its website.
Jessica Pressman, vice president of the board and honoree for her work in organizing the Rails and Ales Beer Festival, reflected on how much the city has changed since Create Huntington was launched.
"When I think about this city five years ago and when I think about it now, the things that I love to do and my favorite things to do here in town weren't even here five years ago," she said. "All of that is the result of a lot of (our honorees)."
Thomas McChesney, who helped establish Create Huntington and emceed the ceremony, also praised the honorees.
"This city has been fundamentally transformed by (our honorees') work," he said. "When you think about what Huntington was like five years ago, certainly when you think of what it was like 10 years ago, there's just almost no comparison."
Some of the honorees included people involved with the Cabell-Huntington Convention and Visitors Bureau, Huntington in Bloom, SCRATCH, Huntington's Kitchen, the Color Run and the Orpheum Project as well as others who just contributed on their own, like Aaron Michael Fox, who helped clean graffiti around town and Megan Keelin-Ramey, who helped design and paint the mural in the 14th Street overpass.
McChesney invited anyone interested in getting involved in any of these organizations or projects of their own to attend Chat-n-Chews from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the lobby of the Frederick Building in downtown Huntington.
Follow reporter Kristi Murphy on Twitter, @Kristi_Murphy.
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