I had to post this as I have been doing a bit of thinking about what a real Juneau Fest would look like, in the absence of improperly acquired and unethically dispensed kickbacks for religious conversion — and I think I have it figured out. Juneau Fest is a 365 day celebration of community, goodwill, compassion and most importantly the entirely altruistic belief in the Golden Rule, doing unto others. Whether one lives by the guidance of the Ten Commandments, the Christian theological virtues of faith, hope and love, the Ten Perfections of Buddhism or the most recent episode of South Park, we are defined by our actions, both as individuals and collectively.
Our community gives without expecting things in return, it lends a helping hand without giving it a seconds thought. We live in a community where social capital (define it for yourself... I believe it to be the wealth of resources and support that each one of us can at any time and for any reason contribute to or make withdrawals upon depending upon our need knowing who and where to turn to) and a genuine interest in the well being of others is what gets us through the long winters (with a side of Framboise Lambic or a mug of eggnog).
It doesn’t take free shiny stuff to bring us together as the true indication of character is not how we behave when things are good, but how we respond when things are bad. Sure the promise of “gifts” could draw us together, but it is during the toughest of times that we rally... call it a revival of sorts... we revive one another’s spirits, we revive a sense of purpose, we revive, revitalize and reinvigorate.
It doesn’t take a big screen tv to bring this community together, it takes an apartment complex fire, it takes a house burning down, it takes children leaving this world too soon and it takes long, dark winters and short rainy summers and it doesn’t happen in 5,7 or 9 day increments, it happens day in and day out.
When the going gets tough, the tough group hug. We come together, we bounce back, we celebrate the big and little victories of those in our community, not with the promise of spendy electronics or weaponry, but with the certainty of a friendly face, a shoulder to lean on, a wealth of good intentions that drive us toward action and a damn-near tangible spirit of good will toward all.
Sadly, the religious group that had hoped to bestow upon us a sense of holiday hope and joy has been met with an X-tra Tuff approach to dishonest donation solicitation and the less-than forthcoming approach for gathering our community together... for they have grossly overestimated our interest in free gadgets and greatly underestimated our Festiveness, a pervasive spirit of community, non-denominational, readily available and free with the purchase of a one-way airline or ferry ticket to the capital city of Alaska... only redeemable 365 days a year.
Director/ Lead Pre-K teacher
TLC Child Care
Sam Adams Design