Caribbean Flayvahz: An Island Dream in Memphis

By–Elbert Hubbard Jr.

Caribbean Flayvahz started when a local out of college couple got together for an idea. It was based on family roots in the Caribbean and in Memphis. Louis and Carla Falkner had their restaurant open since 2018, and they haven’t looked back since.

“It started with my wife, she had a dream opening a restaurant,” said Louis Faulkner.  Most of our recipes come from Kittitian style cooking. It represents the whole vision of Caribbean Flayvahz. “

Carla Faulkner family comes from Queens, New York and her heritage lies in St. Kitts. The island was formerly known as St. Christopher Island. Louis family comes from Orange Mound in Memphis. Their history lead to opening Caribbean Flayvahz a local restaurant serving the Hickory Hill area in Memphis.

Louis said owning Caribbean Flayvahz as a young black business owner is no different than other restaurants.

“It’s a lot of grinding and hard work,” he said. “It is a lot of hours in the day put in.  Me and my wife are working along with the cashiers and the chefs so that the city can come around and try Caribbean Flayvahz.”

Carla Faulkner said she is half Caribbean, with her family coming from St. Kitts. She said most of her recipes comes from across the West Indies.

“Some of our dishes include Kittitian dishes, we have Jamaican dishes, and we have Trinidadian dishes as well,” she said.   “We did not just one name, and that is why we came up with Caribbean Flayvahz. I wanted the word flavors to be different because we are different. We are relaxed, cool, vibe, energetic, and it is a fun place to eat.”

She also brought a popular dish to the table and talked about the sides that normally come with the plate. The plate included curried chicken, steam cabbage, plantain banana fritters, and coco bread which is like a giant sweet roll. Some of their dishes came with rice, cabbage, and the coco bread.

Carla Faulkner’s favorite dish is a Caribbean favorite and American south favorite as well.

“My favorite dish is oxtail and macaroni and cheese,” she said. “I also recommend my favorite with coco bread. Coco bread goes wonderfully with any of our patties. We have jerk, curry, beef and vegetable patties.”

Carla Faulkner wanted to let customers know that this restaurant is on the rise.

“I would say to our customer base come and savor the Caribbean flavor, come and relax,” she said. “We have great food, spices, and great music and a great atmosphere so you can come a be yourself.”

The restaurant gained positive reviews from customers in the Mid-South area according to recent Google Reviews.

Television production veteran retires after 38 years at WREG-TV in Memphis

Eddie Goss works from 3:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. every morning. He inspired many people including his coworkers and his employers.

His final day at WREG-TV was June 29th. He was one of few people who worked there earlier than some of his employers.

“I talked though Facebook and I told him thanks for everything,” said MarShon Calvin who previously worked at WREG in 2001.

Ron Walter the president and General Manager of WREG-TV said Eddie was a huge part of the production team.

There was a Facebook page created named Happy Trails Eddie Goss as another tribute.


This past Friday, there was a tribute to Goss at Pancho’s in Memphis.

Goss currently is retired but still freelances for several projects.

 

Middle College High School Alumni Plans Summer 2020 Reunion

 

It all started with posts on Facebook. Then it started to grow when the class of 2008 and 2009 planned their reunion for Middle College High School. The Middle College High School class of 2010 is planning a reunion set for summer 2020.

Trevor Nolan, the committee chair along with LaTrice Otis, Earnest Shinault, Theo Jones, and Dominique Chalmbers are coordinating this event.

Nolan said the reunion will feature several events including a networking and mingle, a class family field day, a class night out, church day, and a banquet dinner with scholarships awarded to future Middle College graduates.

One goal of this reunion according to Nolan is for the class to bond together. Plus the proceeds from this reunion will go to a scholarship fund for Middle College Students.

Nolan and the committee also have a few ideas in the works including a 3 on 3 basketball game and a local and national comic comedy show.

The class reunion currently is planned for summer 2020. No other details about the reunion have been revealed.

Father and Daughter Reunites at Book Club Meeting

Faria Walker was the guest speaker at Myron Mays Book Club this month. She talked about relationships with her father and how it motivated her to write the book.


As the host Myron Mays was interviewing her, he introduced a special guest to the book club. Walker’s father appeared at the book club. Walker and her father have not seen each other since her childhood and some of her adult life.  Walker and her father grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio. Her father came down from Cincinnati to support her. Walker discussed how people should still have a relationship with their parents despite hardships and drama.

Walker wanted to forgive and form a relationship with her father after 20 years. In her book, she talked about how the child should forgive and honor their parents whether right or wrong. She also wanted to write a children’s book about this. Her book is based on a bible verse in the New Testament.

As the book club discussion ended, her father talked about how hard it was for him to leave Walker. He wanted that relationship with her. After 20 years from childhood and adult they are finally reunited.

The book club closed the crowd asked questions about Walker’s relationship with her father. There were some questions about single parenthood with the mother. One crowd member asked about single parent fathers.

Walkers book Grass That Withers Will Grow  has been released. The price of the book is $13 on amazon.com.

 

Gospel, Hip-Hop, and Country Rock headlines Local Memphis Music Fest

Local Memphis Musicians Performs at Music Fest

The 2nd Annual Local Memphis Music Festival was held at Downtown Elementary on May 12, 2018. There were several local music acts including Personal Praise, AG Hustle and touring country rock musician Anna Benson.

Personal Praise kicked off the event with two of their gospel hits “The Call” and “Keep on Reaching”.  The group’s purpose behind the music is to uplift teens. Both Tez and Yana are still in high school.

“Im a junior and I attend Middle College High school (Yana), and I am a graduating senior at Central High School (Tez),” said both members of Personal Praise.

The group released their first national album but this wasn’t the first time they performed together.

“We have been singing together for almost seven to eight years. but since we are brother and sister we grew up our whole lives singing together,” said Yana from Personal Praise.

When Radio Memphis invited the group for an interview they were instantly booked for the show by the organizer of Radio Memphis.

AG Hustle performed a few songs about his struggle and how he continues to work for  him and his son.

“I been doing music since I was 16. My cousin involved me into it. It was never my work it was his work.”

He has worked on many mix tapes. However, he said his best music is a work in progress.

“The best song I worked on is on my album. It’s called ‘Diary of a Winner’. It’s basically telling my story or how I got started with music.”

Anna Benson is a local artist who toured across the south. She even recorded songs with a producer who knew the Minneapolis sensation Prince. She performed country rock songs at the festival.

The festival was held at Downtown Elementary where at least 2500 people where in attendance. The festival continued until 7:00 pm on May 12.

Local Panelists Discuss the Black Panther Movie

 

 

A discussion was held at the Clayborn Temple in Memphis yesterday about a certain box office hit. Four Memphis activists answered questions, responded to comments, and debated about the meaning of the Marvel movie Black Panther.

The panelists were King Dre–a Memphis music artist, Tonya Meeks–a local author, Sam O’Bryant–a Senior Equity Director for SchoolSeed Foundation, and Miska Clay Bibbs of the Shelby County School Board. The hosts of the event was Jamie McGriff–a former reporter for WATN-TV and P.A. Bomani–a marketing manager for Easy Moving Services in Memphis.

The Black Panther movie discussion included the origins of the movie in the comic. Bomani said the comic characters were biased because the original comic book came out in the 1940’s. This was the time during racism and how Caucasian male comic book writers viewed other races. Bomani said the character in the movie Jabari of the Jabari tribe was known as ApeMan in the original comic. He also said the main character T’Challa was not the original Black Panther until later in the century.

Many people asked about the relations between the characters in Black Panther and the African Americans struggles in the real world. Bibbs said this is the first lead superhero that was African American that kids can look up too. She also said the movie empowered African Americans because the war cries and the chant Wakanda Forever.

McGriff said the female warriors were amazingly skilled. She said those warriors and the “vibranium” weapons were impactful in the movie.

Dre said his favorite character in the movie was Erik Killmonger. He did not see Killmonger as the villain but a guy that wanted to help the world using Wakanda’s resources.  He said that T’Challa or Killmonger could have changed the world. Dre also almost gave a spoiler when he said Killmonger did not die in the movie.

The discussion ended with the panelists talking about how to empower the Memphis community. As much as 80 people showed up to this event at the Clayborn Temple.

Wendi C. Thomas Discusses MLK 50 during MABJ Meeting

Wendi C. Thomas a former writer at the Memphis Commercial Appeal discussed her work on MLK 50 on March 3. This was during the monthly MABJ meeting held at Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church in Memphis.  Thomas touched on many topics including her MLK 50 publications for the Civil Rights Museum. She said the museum did not had editorial control over the project. Thomas’ vision of the project showed how Memphis progressed long after the civil rights movement.
Thomas said Memphis has a high poverty rate,  high crime rate, limited access to education, and limited to no access to healthy food. She said there is still work to be done in the area. Thomas also said minority children have limited and unequal access to education. According to a study she conducted she said children are poor because of their parents’ poverty.
Thomas also discussed her journey as a Neiman Harvard University Fellow. She was a fellow three years ago and researched many topics including issues in Memphis, issues in government, and issues in media.
Thomas said during her time at the Memphis Commercial Appeal, she would get unusual story requests from her editor. She said some people at the Appeal would get her to write stories that were in the interest of a mainstream audience. Thomas also said she had earn trust with her sources. She said she could find the best source for a story before anyone could get to them.
Her speech ended with some advice to the young journalists. Thomas said you have to look out for your coworkers and sources. She said young journalists should be aware of what is going on with your newsroom leadership.
The MABJ President Montee Lopez discussed some events happening within the NABJ region. He announced that the Region III NABJ conference would be in Atlanta from April 6-8, 2018. Other announcements included the MABJ Mixer, and the “TRAP Yoga” retreat coming in a few weeks. Vice President Jeremy Pierre also announced a MABJ Producer Bootcamp for the college students coming this summer. There is no set date for the bootcamp.

MLK 50: The Celebration of Dr. King

Memphis and MLK 50: From Division to Unity

Memphis and the Mid-South may have its’ problems as far as crime, government issues, and financial instability. However, the city is more than prepared for the MLK 50 event in April. The event is to commemorate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s death at the Lorraine motel. His death came after the Memphis Sanitation Strike in 1968.

There are many events and celebrations planned in April for Dr. King. Plus, MLK 50 will have a celebration during black history month in February. MLK 50 is expected to be a huge celebration in Memphis with more than several hundred thousand people to come to the bluff city.

The celebration ends with a commemoration at the Civil Rights Museum honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Some events for the MLK 50 include a forum on the state of civil rights for every American, an orchestra honoring the musicians of the movement, a march to the Civil Rights Museum, and other planned events at the University of Memphis.

 

 

Inspiring Young Journalists: From the Women Powerhouses in Memphis Media

Inspiring Young Journalists

The Memphis Association of Black Journalists held a forum about minority women in media. This took place on Saturday, Feb. 6, 2018 at Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church in Memphis. The guest speakers included WREG’s Stephanie Scurlock, WATN Katina Rankin and WHBQ’s Mearl Pervis. All of the women anchored during the primetime slot at 5pm, 6pm, and 10pm.

During the forum, the anchors discussed how they work constantly on their shows.  Scurlock said that she was not the first choice as a primetime anchor when Claudia Barr left WREG. “I was working mostly weekends and mornings with Markova Reed,” she said. The station was looking for a primetime anchor. They were considering Markova but if she left mornings the show would crumble. They had other candidates but I was blessed to be chosen as a primetime anchor.”

Pervis said she helps others and she is deeply committed to her job as a journalist.  “I love my job and I stay with it since I was a reporter,” she said. “When I am at work, I am like a mother to the young talent that comes in. I always help out the people that I see are working hard. Commitment is key in this business.”

Rankin said she would not trade this job in for anything. Coming from Mississippi, she advised young journalists what are you waiting for. “If I were a young journalist, I would start now in creating my own content,” she said.  “I mean what is stopping you. I would shoot edit and write something right this minute if I were you. That is how you make an impression. Get out there and get started.”

The meeting concluded with a donation from the New Orleans Association of Black Journalist fundraiser to MABJ. $200 was donated to MABJ along with $100 from Fox 13 to the organization.

MABJ Hosts Black Panther Movie Screening At Stage Cinema

The Memphis Association of Black Journalists will be hosting a screening of Black Panther this Saturday. It will be at the Malco Stage Cinema in Bartlett near the Wolfchase Mall. MABJ is expected to have nearly 175 guests to attend the screening. Montee Lopez the president of MABJ said he is an avid Marvel comic book fan and is excited to see the screening.

Jeremy Pierre, the vice president of MABJ, said the organization wants young people to see a hero or the main hero as a African or African American. He said that this will not only help MABJ but also help the young Memphis community. According to the city of Memphis demographics, the city is mostly populated by African Americans and minorities. Pierre said this gives MABJ and the young people who attends the screening a chance to see a African American character that is not a slave, drug dealer, maniac, threat to society or how the majority race views of them in movies and reality.

The screening is February 17.