Sometimes, getting the community together means lots of food, fun and honest conversation. That's what the Radford City School District is hoping will happen on Friday.
Early Thursday morning, I walked into the Taco Inn in Radford. Mandy Queen and Carole Burke were busy getting ready for their lunch crowd, but it was the sound and smell of fresh sugary cinnamon chips was just too doggone much
"You all want to try one?
My daddy didn't raise a dummy, so I took it.
Here's the story, Taco Inn and nearly 30 other Radford businesses, are donating all kinds of food, drinks and services Friday, for what's being called a community tailgate party, "A taste of Radford."
"So I'm going to try and make it up there' said Queen, 'If not then I'm going to probably have somebody up there representing us and I'm making these lovely cinnamon chips!'
Radford High School's last home football game is tomorrow and it's free if you come to the tailgate party next to the stadium.
This tailgate is part of a new effort called the "Be There" program. Radford city school leaders are encouraging parents, students and teachers to build stronger relationships.
"Be There" co-coordinators Kelly Morris and Lee Slusher stood side by side. They're friends and it shows. One woman starts a sentence and the other seems to finish it. Slusher said she's been a teacher for more than thirty years, while Morris has eleven years under her teaching belt. Slusher said during her career, she saw how important relationships with parents can be.
"We hope these relationships will lead to parents understanding that they are the first and most important teacher in their children's lives.
Brewin' Around is another Radford business that's donating coffee and hot chocolate for Friday's free tailgate party.
In it's second year, I asked owner John Long, why get involved?
"It's kind of a give and take. You can't always give and you can't always take. You have to give and take and this is our turn to give."
My mind's going back to those cinnamon chips. I thought if I leaned over, Mandy might offer me some more. I was Wrong.
The Taste of Radford Tailgate party starts at 5-thirty, lasts one hour and it's absolutely free.