The last thing I wanted to do on a Saturday morning was get up and go to work. But, I’m glad I did. My destination was the Crown Coliseum, and the Fayetteville Futures II event. If you didn’t make it, you don’t know what you missed.
    {mosimage} I have to admit, I was surprised when I pulled into the Crown parking lot. There were more cars in the parking lot than I have seen at some entertainment events. To say that I was pleasantly surprised is an understatement.
      I slid in just a few minutes late (remember, the last thing I wanted to do on Saturday morning was go to work,) so I missed a lot of the welcoming remarks. I did get a chance to hear Kirk deViere explain how the process works; to hear George Breece thank the long and varied list of people who made the event happen; and to hear Congressman Larry Kissell applaud the community for its efforts.
     As I looked across the room, I was again amazed by the sheer number of people in attendance. Remember, this was 9:30 a.m. on Saturday morning. The hospitality room, where the event was held, was filled almost to the point of overflowing. A rough count put the number at 500, but more people came in as the morning wore on.
     Yes,  there were the people you expected to see there: local politicians and business leaders. There were community activists and educators. But what impressed me the most was the everyday citizens of Cumberland County who took time out of their hectic schedules to become part of the process. There were men and women, and people of all races. They all had one goal: making our city better.
     If there was anything disappointing in the event it was the lack of involvement by young professionals - the 25 to 35-year-old demographic was by-in-large absent. It is those people who must take ownership of our community. They are the ones who, in the coming years, will step into roles of leadership.
     So, to all of those involved, kudos for taking the first step. Now stay the course. For that noticeably absent group, where were you? It’s your future, too.

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