Pascagoula is that “sleepy little town” located on the Mississippi Coast at the mouth of the Pascagoula River.
Home to Ingalls Shipbuiding and her massive riverfront facilities; Signal International operations; one of the largest Chevron refineries; and of course other spin-off industry contractors, large regional and medium-market banks, and thousands of small businesses operating from homes as well as brick-and-mortar commercial properties.
The town was originally an Indian village of ‘bread eaters’ who peacefully inhabited the river camps and murky water beachfronts. Over time, industry boomed, city development expanded, and today — here we are, one of the most beloved small town bedroom communities along the Mississippi Coast, rich with cultural, political, and athletic legacies.
The post-Katrina era has caused every beachfront community to re-evaluate everything from zoning, to insurance regulations, to redevelopment, to grant funding. The redevelopment questions for citizens and City leaders are many. The solutions, thus far, have been complex.
One common theme recurs in nearly every conversation I have engaged in: we must CHANGE. Again. And, no one likes change.
So — what will CHANGE look like in Pascagoula? Again?
DREAMERS and CREATIVES …
For much too long, we have stifled the folks in our town who love to Dream Big.
The Creative minds who think outside the box with limitless ideas and vision. The Walt Disney’s. The Mark Zuckerberg’s. The Kevin Costner’s. Like their critics, we simply don’t believe ‘in’ them. They’re just too goofy for our logical and reasonable systems of thought.
We brush them off as “pipe dreamers”, flighty, unrealistic thinkers. And, maybe so. But, at least they’re thinking with Hope and positive aspirations rather than pessimism and negativity. We must give Dreamers a voice in Pascagoula.
INVESTORS and CAPITALISTS …
Shark Tank ™ is one of the coolest popular new TV shows.
It is ‘staged’ — for the ratings, obviously. But, the concept is simple. Basically, a panel of multi-millionaire investors review business ideas and aggressively [or not] stew over who will buy into the business opportunity and make millions from those small time dreamers and developers who simply need raw Cash and Capital, and good guidance, to get their ideas off the ground.
If you have raw Cash and Capital — and Integrity driven guidance — we need YOU in Pascagoula!
A very simple observation of small towns across Mississippi and beyond reveals a new generation of Investors — even, ‘Sharks’ — who saw opportunities to ‘flip’ those small towns into destination towns and cities.
As ugly as that might get for the sweet little ole #Goula citizens we believe we represent, it might mean that we inevitably must ‘make deals’ with a few ‘Sharks’. Hopefully, the ‘good guys’ with the goods.
THE MILLENNIALS …
If you are paying any attention to society and culture at all, you realize that Millennials, as a generation, are now empowered to lead our communities and ultimately — our nation.
They are the ‘next’ generation that we have decried for decades now as those who don’t know Who they are, don’t know What they want, don’t care about real work, etc. Now, They are proving most of those opinions and perspectives completely absurd and false.
Simply put — They are smarter, They are more passionate, and They are more cause-driven than we imagined. And — we need Them!
THE FUTURE …
So … #Goula … can [we] change? Again?!
I believe we can. I pray that we do! We had better decide. And, if we will … the future has never looked brighter, in my opinion. If we will not … LORD help us.
#MakeGoulaGreatAgain #VOTE #Change