Young Professionals to Celebrate Aiken Youth

The Aiken Chamber Young Professionals (AYP) are preparing to showcase the future of Aiken with a community event that supports the "Celebrate Aiken" 4th quarter program - Aiken's Future.  
The event, called "AYP Celebrates Youth" will be held Friday and Saturday, October 15 and 16 in downtown Aiken.  Friday will feature a family oriented celebration at the Newberry Festival Site.  The event will offer kid friendly interactive attractions, music by a DJ, and entertainment, including dance teams and robotics demonstrations, and food and beverages.
A 5-K run, promoting Aiken's "Fit Future," will be held on Saturday.  The run will also include a one-mile walk/run for kids, those pushing strollers, and other participants.
 "We're really excited about this opportunity to help Aiken showcase the future," said AYP Chair Josh Stewart, Stewart Builders.  "It's so important that the young professionals are involved in celebrating the fourth quarter of Aiken's 175th because we are the future of this community, and we want to make a positive difference for tomorrow," Stewart said. 
"AYP Celebrates Youth" Chair Nealie Godbee, Veracity Payment Solutions, sees the two-day event as a way to celebrate youth in a fun way while also promoting the need for a "fit' Aiken in years to come.  "We want everyone to come out, have a good time, and see some of the talent of our youth right here in Aiken.  At the same time, we want people to understand the importance of exercise to our health," Godbee said.
The two-day "AYP Celebrates Youth" event is the young professionals' first solo community project involving the total planning and implementation of an event.  The group of 22- to 39-year olds participated in Celebrity Waiters night in May, when they raised $ 1,800, along with Soiree, for Children's Place.
"The Aiken Chamber Young Professionals are working very hard on this project," said Chamber Chair and Celebrate Aiken Co-chair Liz Stewart, Stewart and Associates.  "They are committed to celebrating Aiken with a successful family oriented event that showcases our youth," said Stewart, who is mentoring and working with the young professionals on the two-day event.
The "AYP Celebrates Youth" community service project supports the AYP strategic plan developed this past January to take the group to the next level.  The group's steering committee and others participated in the in-depth, five-hour planning session that resulted in a well defined vision and bold action steps for 2010 and beyond.
The aggressive plan features five bold steps with a vision that focuses on three areas - networking, community service, and educational events designed to nurture future leaders of the Greater Aiken area.
For more information or to join the AYP group, please go to or call the Chamber at (803) 641-1111. The AYP is also on Facebook.
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