Taste of Soul Event Highlights History


The worker’s from Ray’s Wings and Things preparing the meals. Photo By: Bowie Chappee

Ava Boley, Reporter

On Monday, Feb 27 from 7-9 p.m.the school hosted the first annual Taste of Soul event showcasing models who expressed African American culture from their time in Africa all the way to the 2000s. These models included Miyera Davis, Chamill London, Golden Patterson, Lela Howard, A’miyah Pittman, Samoyiaa Mildred Woods Walker, Bianca Jackson, Tracy Cooley and Adrian Cooley. The event was hosted by the Alton Success Academy director and truancy officer, Paula Covington as well as Sean Williams, a local attorney. 

Covington handled all problems that arose, such as a small delay from the models or an issue with the music, with grace and charisma. She had the audience laughing and murmuring their agreement through the whole event with her comedic approach to the show. At one point she even delighted the audience with an impromptu dance with a man from the crowd to music showcasing their 70s themed models. 

There was a difficulty in finding models for the show and some were recruited mere hours before the performance. “Some of the models showed up the day of, in all I only had about 6 hours total to prepare,” senior Lela Howard said. Even with this inconvenience they still persevered and the show went on. 

There was also catering provided by Ray’s Wings and Things in Belleville, Illinois. They provided food that was packaged up for participants and members of the audience to take home. 

Though there may have been a few bumps in the road, the presentation seemed to please the audience. “I don’t let hiccups stop me, I drink some water and move on,” Covington said. At the end she expressed her hope that this will be an annual event and that next year even more will come to participate.