Written by: Alyssa Prophet
The past few months have been full of some tough lessons in all aspects of our lives. As a new member of the area, I was eager to see what summer in Jacksonville was like and what those “No Brit Parking” signs are really for, especially for a town that doesn’t even have a stoplight. I was excited to take my family to a show, try out some restaurants, and immerse myself in the community. As you all know these “fun” lists were quickly replaced with “how to survive” lists. We were presented with a new challenge as a community. While navigating these challenges I have learned many valuable lessons during my short time working with the members of the Jacksonville community. Here are three that I think would be helpful to you all.
1. SENSE OF APPRECIATION
Within my first month or two of living and working in the area, I quickly realized Jacksonville was the gem of the county. The people were genuinely happy to sit down to have a cup of coffee or take you on a quick tour to see the hot spots for live music. How did I get so lucky to accept a position in a town with such generous and caring people? I had no idea how important this network of people that I was slowly starting to create would become during the upcoming months of stay at home orders and social distancing. This network of people worked effortlessly on projects to continue to keep people of Jacksonville connected. I was grateful to have such determined people to connect with and an inspiring community to be a part of. Thank you, Jacksonville for teaching a newcomer how to be appreciative.
2. SENSE OF COMMUNITY
I have been overwhelmed by the sense of volunteerism Jacksonville has. If there is a job that needs to be done, all you need to do is make a call and there are people ready to get their hands dirty! This sense of community makes the ones that serve it, like me, grateful to be a part of the experience. It’s a time that feels truly special and I feel privileged to have the opportunity to be a part of the growth of something that could enrich people’s daily routines and lives. Members of the Jacksonville community have shown me a new sense of small-town hospitality and encouraged me to extend this same hospitality to visitors I encounter at the Center. Thank you, Jacksonville for teaching a newcomer how to serve their community.
3. SENSE OF NATURE
It’s hard to write about all things Jacksonville without mentioning how the town’s landscape has impacted me. From coming into town through the vineyards and orchards to daily run-ins with the “local” deer on the way to work, the area offers any outside adventurer the opportunity to fully immerse themselves into the forest. It’s these surrounding forests that seem to bring a sense of peace to the people that venture through them. This sense of peace extends through the dedication and commitment the people of the community show to continue to help the town stay connected through these tough times. Thank you, Jacksonville for showing me how to bring aspects of nature into my life and workplace.
Thank you, Jacksonville
Your Eager Student
About Alyssa Prophet
Alyssa Prophet is an administrative and marketing professional with four years of customer service experience and three years of honing her skills as an event planner and marketer. Alyssa manages rentals and assists with marketing at the Center. Whether it’s drafting a customized event estimate, designing JCC collateral, or setting up for Friday morning yoga, she assists in making the JCC operations run smoothly. With a bachelor’s degree in business, Alyssa has been eager to use her skills and experience to help nonprofit organizations such as the Jacksonville Community Center.