“I’ve been living here over 12 years and this is the first time we’ve ever had anything like this,” commented Cynthia Williams on the colorful bright Christmas light display, after she and neighbor Dewarrick Quinn readily volunteered to “flip the switch” to illuminate their community as a part of Mayor Myra L. Taylor’s Beautification Initiative for the 22nd and 27th Avenue Gateways into the City of Opa-locka, during the holiday season. At 6:15 PM. the 22nd light display brought residents from their apartments to marvel at a spectacular view; the likes of which some say have never been seen on their block prior to Saturday, December 22, 2012.
After about a month of working on the idea, the Public Works Department laid the ground work and all Mayor Taylor had to do was give Florida Power and Light a one day notice and, “they gave us the electricity we needed to light the median,” she remarked. With the lights, other parts of Taylor’s beautification program included a sprinkler system and sod, to create a nice landscape.
Vice Mayor Joseph L. Kelley lead a prayer prior to Williams and Quinn lighting the street, as Commissioner Luis B. Santiago, his wife and sons looked-on. Commissioner Timothy Holmes traveled up-and-down 22nd Avenue, getting a driver’s perspective of the attractive presentation. Other drivers, observing the aesthetic change, reduced their speed, shared the Mayor’s signature “thumbs-up” with the Public Works staff, and one even honked the horn to the tune of “Jingle Bells.”
Yes, it looked a lot like Christmas on 22nd Avenue for Williams, Quinn and other residents who expressed appreciation to the Mayor and the Commission for having the insight to include their neighborhood in the City of Opa-locka’s holiday decorations. Quinn immediately named the tree, with the light socket he plugged, “Joy,” he gleamed, “to the neighborhood and to the world.”