A unique way to spend some time with friends, family or with a date can involve civic pride and participation in community activities. Just such an opportunity came to pass at the annual Richard Somers Day Memorial. Sadly, civic pride has been lost on many who find busyness in other matters more important than getting involved with community. While many people don’t see the significance of civic duty, your date, mate, friends and family may actually hold you in high esteem because you show that you care about more than the score of a ball game, the latest in designer shoes or the gossip coming out of Hollywood. In essence, all Americans are bound together inexorably, by their heritage. If they cease to embrace it, they may just lose it.
Every town and village all across America has local heroes who are memorialized by parades, street signs, building dedications or perhaps a statue of a horse with the general mounted as if charging into battle. While on your date into history you may want to sound erudite by claiming that with equestrian statues (horses with leaders a top) the number of feet that the horse has off the ground tell how the hero died: one foot off the ground means wounded in battle, two feet off…died in battle. All feet on the ground…hero died of natural causes. While making this claim makes you look smart to your date, it’s actually a myth, urban legend. If you are dating a history major or city planner don’t try this method of impressing them.
So who was Richard Somers? He was a local boy of the South Jersey shore born near his family’s farm. When less than 16 years old, Richard Somers was already sailing his boat along the river where he would eventually go to sea traveling to New York for trade. These nautical skills allowed him to become one of the youngest naval commanders in America history. Sadly, he died at the young age of 26 while sailing his ship Intrepid into hostile Tripoli waters. He and his volunteer crew planned on crashing the ship, loaded with explosives into the enemy flotilla. However, the explosion was premature and Somers and his crew died in the attempt. However, the pirates and the kingdoms surrounding the Mediterranean realized the Americans were dead serious about no longer paying tribute (lots of money) to travel these waters as did the Europeans for many years.
Many memorial gatherings offer no more than a parade and a few speeches. If you do your research, you may find events like the Richard Somers Day Memorial where non-profit, Liberty and Prosperity, sponsored a fund raiser event with good food being served at Sandy Point Restaurant. Besides a great meal, for dessert you get a big helping of civic pride.
If you act friendly and are receptive, you may even meet the most interesting, nice people.
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