The Georgia Power Parade of Excellence focuses on outstanding academic achievement by featuring some of the area's best and brightest students. Students who finish in the top 10 percent of their class in the fourth through ninth grade will march in the parade.
The parade begins on Saturday, September 29, at 10:00 a.m. and the route will begin on Peachtree Street at Ralph McGill Boulevard, move south to Marietta St, turn west and end at Centennial Olympic Park, adjacent to the Georgia Dome. Proceeds from the weekend's events will benefit Project Success, 100 Black Men of Atlanta's flagship mentoring, academic support and scholarship program that supports students from the Atlanta Public School system.
This year's parade promises to be even more exciting than before, including more floats and thrilling entertainment from the FAMU Marching 100 and the TSU Aristocrat of Bands along with some of the most talented high school bands from across the nation. Georgia School Superintendent Kathy Cox and Georgia Power Executive Richard Holmes will be the grand marshals for the parade. In addition, "Stomp the Yard's" Brian J. White, "That's so Raven's" Kyle Massey from Disney and "Zoey 101's" Christopher Massey from Nickelodeon will be in the parade.
"100 Black Men of Atlanta, through the Bank of America Atlanta Football Classic, does a tremendous job educating and empowering the youth of our communities," said Chris Womack, Georgia Power executive vice president for external affairs. "Georgia Power is proud to renew its support of this important event and remains proud of its long-standing support of the events surrounding the AFC.
"Georgia Power has been a long-term partner of 100 Black Men of Atlanta and a friend to our flagship program, Project Success," says John T. Grant, Jr., CEO, 100 Black Men of Atlanta, the weekend's organizers. "By sponsoring the state's only parade that celebrates academic excellence, Georgia Power continues to lead the corporate charge in dedication to educating our youth."
Past grand marshals for the Parade of Excellence have included Mayor Shirley Franklin, Cox, Georgia Power CEO Mike Garrett, Womack and Holmes.
Proceeds from the AFC also benefit students at the two historically Black college participants, Florida A&M and Tennessee State Universities. This event has raised more than $6 million in contributions to the participating universities and almost $3 million for Project Success.
Project Success, created by the 100 Black Men of Atlanta in 1987, helps to prepare Atlanta Public Schools' students to successfully graduate from high school and helps to prepare them for post-secondary education. The mentoring program encourages urban youth to be self-motivated and confident while emphasizing the importance of a strong work ethic. Its long-term goal is to create an educated workforce of well-rounded individuals who understand the importance of giving back to the community. With this successful program as the cornerstone of 100 Black Men of Atlanta's activities, the organization continues to build its portfolio of services to improve the lives of young African Americans.