A panoply of good and evil, street theatre sponsored by 20 local churches…by the people, of the people and for the people.
Dawn broke with a big black bad-ass semi-truck gliding like the Devil incarnate onto the football field in Sunland Park. Police cadets stood at vigilant attention. Stealth panels open to reveal a sophisticated sound stage.
Then a smiling Stephen and Linda Tavani, his wife — but Peaches to us — break into song. Belting out highpowered gospel tempered by heart-felt humorous Italian jokes. A sign language specialist used body aerobics to translate the high swell of music, while Pastor Eddie translated into Spanish, a little Italian and whatever else was necessary.
The crowd gathered at booths flanking the field. Free hot dogs, soda and cones, hair cuts, face painting, plants, family photos, bicycle repair, even an inventor’s booth. Lobbing trajectories of high tech bows and arrows whizzing overhead (all legal and patented by Pastor Clayton, a police chief at his side). The crowd was enthralled.
Stephen quarterbacked footballs and basketballs into the crowd, then hurled water balloons bursting with $10 bills. Kids shrieked, their faces beaming at the booty. Some cheeks were still stuffed with marshmallows to win the Chubby Bunny Contest for iPods and TVs. A mother of 8 won a bicycle and was asked to enumerate their names: Jesus, Angel….
Stephen told them they were all special because God had made them. They knew that Jesus loved them too.
The churches united. All enjoyed a special family day. The Devil, smited once again, was last seen high-tailing it back to Santa Clarita.