Penn Center Community Relations Committee Host 2nd Meeting

March 22, 2018 by

Penn Center Community Relations Committee Meeting


Penn Center, Inc. has begun a Community Relations Committee (CRC). The Community Relations Committee is a standing committee of the Penn Center, Inc. Board of Trustees. It was established on December 8, 2017 in order to improve and enhance the relationship between Penn Center and the community it serves.

The CRC meets on the third Wednesday every two months at 6 pm in Frissell Hall at the Penn Center National Register Historic District.   The group was launched in January 2018. The Community Relations Committee will host at a minimum, 1 Community Forum each quarter and will also provide leadership and coordination for the Community Sing Program.    On March 21, 2018, the second CRC meeting was held which provided the community with feedback from the Penn Center Board of Trustees and staff on the community recommendations from the January meeting.

Penn Center Community Relations Committee FeedbackPenn Center Community Relations Committee FeedbackPenn Center Community Relations Committee Feedback


The community was introduced to the new staff members at Penn Center.  Penn is accepting applications for a number of additional employees, especially for the welcome center and summer youth and feeding programs.

The executive director provided an overview on the building projects that are still underway.  The next major building project will be the installation of a football field and area for volleyball and tennis behind the child care center.   Penn Center will also begin being fenced in before March ends.   A fitness & wellness center with two pieces of fitness equipment will soon open in Frissell Hall.  In addition to these things, staff is completing plans for a number of programming activities at the historic site in order to engage the community.   Included amongst the things that will be forthcoming in the next two months will be the completion of the farmer’s market which will provide spaces to local crafts artists on one day a week for free and the other days will be for farmers and seafood.

In addition to hearing the staff and structural updates, the community did a prioritizing exercise on 17 recommendations that had been made during the first meeting that no action has been taken on yet.  The responses to those items will be made available during the May meeting.  After the May meeting, the CRC will be structured and the actual power of the group will be determined.    A primary objective of the Community Relations Committee is to establish and maintain two-way communication between Penn Center’s board, staff and community members.

The next CRC meetings will be held at 6 pm at Frissell on:

• May 16
• July 18
• September 19
• November 21


Gullah/Geechee Gold Rice Festival on Historic St. Helena Island, SC

March 21, 2018 by
Gullah/Geechee Gold Rice Festival 
on Historic St. Helena Island, SC
St. Helena Island, SC is the home to a thriving Gullah/Geechee community.  It is one of the largest contiguous Gullah/Geechee communities in the Gullah/Geechee Nation from Jacksonville, NC to Jacksonville, FL.  Many of the families on St. Helena Island can recount stories of rice fields that were planted and harvested by their elders and their ancestors.  Last year, Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation ( who is a native of St. Helena Island was presented with rice seeds by the Carolina Gold Rice Foundation and Dr. Francis Morean.  She was able to grow rice where her grandfather last grew it decades ago on the island.
Queen Quet is returning to Trinidad and Tobago in March on the “Save the Sea Islands World Tour” in order to provide a keynote address at the “TnT International Hill Rice Symposium” where she delivered a keynote in 2016.   From there, she will return to her home island to host the “Gullah/Geechee Gold Rice Festival” in conjunction with the St. Helena Island Community Market on Saturday, April 7, 2018 from 10 am to 3 pm at the Dr. Martin Luther King Memorial Park at the intersection of Highway 21/Sea Island Parkway and Dr. Martin Luther King Drive on St. Helena Island, SC in the Gullah/Geechee Nation.  This event that is being sponsored by the Gullah/Geechee Sea Island CoalitionSt. Helena Island Community Market, and All Mobile Productions™ (AMP™) is FREE and open to the public, but they do request that attendees obtain passes on EventBrite at
Gullah/Geechee Gold Rice Festival 2018
The “Gullah/Geechee Gold Rice Festival” will celebrate the history of rice amongst the Gullah/Geechee.  Traditional Gullah/Geechee rice dishes will be on sale along with other Gullah/Geechee crafts, books, CDs, and DVDs.  There will be music provided by All Mobile Productions™ (AMP™) at this festival celebrating cultural heritage and the historic legacy of the Gullah/Geechee.  Bring de famlee and jayn we!  Cum nyam pun wha we nyam pun mongst de Gullah/Geechee.

Queen Quet of the Gullah/Geechee featured by the Audubon

March 17, 2018 by

Queen Quet at Beidler Forest on Maroon Cultural Day

Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation ( is an alumni of Toyota TogetherGreen with Audubon.  She participated in the second annual Maroon Cultural Day at Beilder Forest along with members of the Gullah/Geechee Fishing Association.   During the celebration, she was asked to discuss her work with Gullah/Geechee SEA & ME which is an environmental engagement and sustainability program that she continues to lead at the Gullah/Geechee Sea Island Coalition and which is supported by the Gullah/Geechee Sustainability Think Tank.  Tune een fa yeddi bout disya:


Read the entire featured article from that day here:


Queen Quet featured on USCB’s Beaufort Blast

March 15, 2018 by


Queen Quet on USCB's Beaufort Blast

Tune in to USCB‘s Beaufort Blast featuring an interview with Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation (

Shadows of Gullah Geechee Author Talk & Exhibit Featuring Queen Quet

March 7, 2018 by
The South Carolina State Library is currently hosting an exhibit entitled Shadows of the Gullah Geechee. This exhibit showcases the photography work of Pete Marovich which explores the lives and culture of the Gullah Geechee people in communities from Hog Hammock on Sapelo Island, Georgia to Mosquito Beach on Sol Legare Island, South Carolina. The project highlights South Carolina’s ties to the Gullah and Geechee culture while capturing everyday moments of work, play, worship and resilience of the Gullah/Geechee people as they are under increasing pressures from encroaching development and rising taxes.
Queen Quet at the Mary Jenkins Praise House

Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation at the Mary Jenkins Praise House on historic St. Helena Island, SC in the Gullah/Geechee Nation. Photo by Pete Marovich from the “Shadows of Gullah Geechee Exhibit.”

Join us for a reception and viewing of this collection which is being held at the South Carolina State Library on Friday, March 23, 2018, from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm. The guest speaker at this event is Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation ( and Founder of the Gullah/Geechee Sea Island Coalition (, an advocacy organization for the continuation of Gullah/Geechee culture. Queen Quet will be presenting her involvement with the artist on this magnificent collection of black and white images, discussing issues that the Gullah and Geechee communities currently face, and the significant role the Gullah and Geechee had in shaping our shared history.

This event is free and open to the public, however, seating is limited. Please register to ensure seat availability for this event:

The schedule for the evening includes a reception and exhibit viewing from 5:00 pm to 5:30 pm. Queen Quet’s presentation is scheduled from 5:30 p. to 6:30 pm, and is followed by a book signing. This event is sponsored by the South Carolina State Library, the Gullah/Geechee Sea Island Coalition, the Library of Congress Center for the Book, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).