Phan Anderson does her magic on Skye’s coiffure. [ GLOW | Contributed ]
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SGI UMC helps girls get their GLOW on

The St. George Island United Methodist Church’s winter GLOW (Go Light Our World) event on Jan. 13 in the church’s fellowship hall offered 26 middle and high school girls an environment to boost self-esteem, to learn and grow as well as simply be giggly girls for the afternoon.

GLOW is based upon Ephesians 5:8, “for you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light.”

This annual biannual event drew girls from Carrabelle, Eastpoint and Apalachicola, and of the eight events this year this was the best attended. “Credit goes to Oyster Radio, which provided us not only with Facebook exposure, but an amazing advertisement,” said Teresa Manning, GLOW’s founder. “As well as eye-catching flyers that were designed by Sophia Harrell with the Franklin County Sheriff Office.

One of GLOW’s components is to provide area girls information on occupational choices. Guest speakers for this event were retired Air Force Col. Chris Anderson, who oversees the Franklin County High School Cadet Core program, who provided the girls with overall information about the program as well as how it has impacted their everyday lives, specifically in leadership and self-confidence. 

Retired Air Force Lt. Col. Nancy O’Pry Gentry, and Army 2nd Lt. Karen Bauer, a Vietnam veteran, spoke about their individual experiences while serving in the military and the perks they enjoyed then and now, such as paid college education, travel around the world and a monthly retirement check.

Entertainment this year was provided by Phan Anderson and her ukulele students, Leilah Wayt, and Bailey and Josh Allen. Singalongs included This Little Light of Mine, Stand By Me and He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands.

The group activity, in keeping with the winter theme, was making knot blankets to take home.

The girls were pampered with hair styling by Anderson, Valerie Lambert and Fran Harrell as well as manicures by Lucy Cooke, Debbie Flowers and Alexis Petty. Through individual financial donations, beauty and hygiene product bags were given to each of the girls.

The girls shopped for sweatshirts, hoodies, sweaters, jeans, leggings, long-sleeved tops, jewelry, shoes, handbags and home decor for their bedrooms. Bags were overflowing with items for the girls and for their moms and sisters.

With the help of generous financial donations by the St. George Island Civic Club and several individuals, each girl received multiple books on individual growth, faith, friendship and family.

At the end of the afternoon the girls enjoyed a sit-down meal of tacos, beans and rice followed by a sundae bar. All food and beverages were donated by the island’s own Piggly Wiggly, i.e. “Little Pig” as well as El Jalisco Mexican restaurant in Eastpoint. 

Plans are being made for the next GLOW, to be in mid-to-late July, just in time for back-to-school prep. The occupational component will be a panel consisting of local self-employed women who will give the girls information on their specific businesses, required education or training and answer the girls’ individual questions.

Any area females who would like to participate in the panel or with GLOW in general please contact Manning at (813) 833-9025. Support within the community for this program has had an impact throughout Franklin County.

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Meet the Editor

David Adlerstein, The Apalachicola Times’ digital editor, started with the news outlet in January 2002 as a reporter.

Prior to then, David Adlerstein began as a newspaperman with a small Boston weekly, after graduating magna cum laude from Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts. He later edited the weekly Bellville Times, and as business reporter for the daily Marion Star, both not far from his hometown of Columbus, Ohio.

In 1995, he moved to South Florida, and worked as a business reporter and editor of Medical Business newspaper. In Jan. 2002, he began with the Apalachicola Times, first as reporter and later as editor, and in Oct. 2020, also began editing the Port St. Joe Star.

Wendy Weitzel The Star Digital Editor

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