Families gather at Douglass Park for Black and White Ball events

Saturday, July 31, 2010 | 4:31 p.m. CDT; updated 7:17 p.m. CDT, Saturday, July 31, 2010
Teonona Campbell, 10, and Nailah Bonaparte push Nathan Bonaparte on the swings at Douglass Park on Saturday. Families came to the park as part of the Black and White Ball, a three-day weekend of events to bring together black alumni of Columbia Public Schools.

COLUMBIA — This weekend marks the 18th Black and White Ball, a series of events that reunites black alumni from Columbia Public School District.

A full schedule of events is available on the event's Facebook page.

Saturday morning, the Black and White Ball Parade began at 10 a.m. The parade group met back at Douglass Park for a casual afternoon of barbecue and socializing among families. There will be a formal dance for adults Saturday evening at the The Hilton Garden Inn and Conference Center. On Sunday afternoon, a talent show will begin at 3 p.m. in Douglass Park.

Robert Thompson, who was born and raised in Columbia, traveled from his home in Colorado Springs, Colo., because he didn't want to miss the events.

"It's a lot of people coming together, and everyone's getting along," Thompson said. "It's a great three-day event."

Clifford Churchill, 64, echoed Thompson.

"I love to be able to share the same area with people I've known for years," Churchill said.

Churchill, a native of Hannibal who now lives in Columbia, used to play high school basketball against the Douglass High School Bulldogs. He enjoyed the opportunity to see his old friends and foes again.

"It's a long legacy," Churchill said.


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