City to host 26th annual Unity in the Community

There will be activities for kids today at the Unity in the Community event in St. Cloud.

If you’re looking to meet new people and celebrate the differences that unite us, look no further than St. Cloud’s annual Unity in the Community event.

The city of St. Cloud is celebrating its 26th annual Unity in the Community event today from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the St. Cloud lakefront.

It will be a day of activities, live music, great food and a sense of unity for the St. Cloud community.

The event will have an interactive kid-zone featuring a bounce house, face painting and more. The St. Cloud Police Department, St. Cloud Fire Rescue, Osceola County Sheriff’s Office and Florida Department of Forestry will have public safety demonstrations available to watch. Local businesses, nonprofits, mental health services and family support groups will have tents set up to visit.

The Osceola County School District’s STEM school bus will be on-site for cool learning opportunities.

It will be a day “where we come together as family and friends to enjoy a very eventful day,” said Demetrius Chappell, St. Cloud recreation manager.

The event began in 1993 in Hopkins Park as a way to celebrate Black History Month.

As Osceola County continued to grow and diversify, the city wanted to embrace the changing demographics and invite the growing Hispanic population to be more involved in what’s going on in St. Cloud.

“We wanted to show that it’s not just about black history but about families and friends of all background, cultures and ethnicities coming together as one,” said Chappell.

St. Cloud is continuously striving to make all its residents feel included in the unique fabric of the St. Cloud community, city officials said.

“As a minority and an employee of the city, we want to show that this town is not what it was perceived to be for so long in the past,” said Chappell. “We have made big strides in showing our diversity and unity amongst each other by doing different events that involves everyone and not just one particular race. I think that our long-term goal is actually already being met right now and our future looks bright when it comes to our diversity.”

The Unity in the Community event will have vendors on site for those interested in signing up their kids for activities going on in the community. There will also be exhibits to offer business advice for those looking to build their own business in St. Cloud.

Unity in the Community will be a “great opportunity to have people come out and meet new people in their local community, meet the different business owners and opportunities that are out there,” said Erin Jenks, special events manager for St. Cloud’s Park and Recreation. “This is a great networking opportunity for newcomers in the city.”

The event is free to the public and all are encouraged to attend.