Pioneers Gala to honor notable Tallahassee citizens

The John G. Riley Center and Museum of African-American History and Culture, “Riley House” is celebrating black History Month by honoring African-American mid wives from the 19th and mid 20th century.

The eighth Annual Cufflinks and Pearls Applause for the Pioneers Gala is scheduled for Friday Feb. 24 from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. in the Carriage House, Goodwood Museum and Gardens.

The gala is going to pay tribute to those who have been community trailblazers and have left a legacy in Tallahassee’s history. All of the proceeds from this event will be going to support the John G. Riley Scholarship Fund.

Some of the many honorees are Georgia Parrmore Long, Gertrude Hill Williams, Lucy Davis and Rebecca Shepherd.

The Riley House is one of Tallahassee’s many museums. The Riley historic home represents the thriving black neighborhood, Smokey Hollow, which was located east of downtown Tallahassee.

“Our mission is to preserve the rich black history throughout Florida not just Tallahassee, the Riley House offers a variety of innovative programs whether it’s partnering with other organizations or giving tours to bring awareness to black history,” said Issac Morgan, the communications coordinator.

The mission and purpose of the center is to discover, archive and illuminate the blended interrelationship of African-American, Native American and European history and preserve African-American landmarks and legacies throughout the state of Florida as an enduring public resource through tourism and education.

“For an assignment I was required to visit the Riley house , I really enjoyed all the museum and I have attended other events there, the pioneers gala seems like it will be great event,” said Nathaly Dorvil, 21, a senior occupational therapy student from Ft. Lauderdale.

According to the website, the Riley house is currently taking donations to raise funds for their Visitor Center annex building which will help promote tourism.

“As a student here at Florida A&M University I think we should visit the Riley House more and support their events and activities, from now on I will make an effort to go there more often,” says twenty-two year old Ashley Ikard-Crooms a senior elementary education student from Jacksonville, Fla.