Hundreds of Milledgeville-Baldwin County residents, dignitaries and state officials are slated to commemorate Central State Hospital (CSH) during the 55th annual Mayor’s Motorcade, also known as M-Day.
“We have great community support. If you have not seen [the show] you don’t know what you’re missing out on; you will be absolutely amazed,” said Shannon New-Diaz, assistant director of the M-Day program. “The main reason this year is more special than in the past is because we’ve reached out in the community and have so much more support. We’re glad that we have some new special features and special acts and ones that have performed in the past that will be coming back.”
The festivities this year for the “Beautiful December” event will begin Tuesday, Dec. 3 with the receiving of gifts from 8 a.m. to noon at CSH’s campus. A parade will commence at 12:30 p.m. throughout the campus, featuring Mayor Richard Bentley as chair of M-Day along with representatives from various businesses, organizations, schools, law enforcement and individuals from across the state.
“[The M-Day program] gives you a good feeling and sets you up for the holiday season,” Diaz said. “We encourage the community to come out to this very special program because it’s a great opportunity to start off the holiday season with good spirits.”
The celebration will end with a 45-minute musical performance by CSH staff, individuals and volunteers and community members at 1:30 p.m. in the auditorium.
“The show will have more performances from ballerinas from the Nutcracker,” Diaz said. “The majority of our participants are individuals with developmental disabilities. They put a lot of work and effort to [put on] this show. They have the best time doing it.”
The CSH Local Redevelopment Authority (CSHLRA) will continue the spirit of the holiday season with caroling, photos with Santa Claus, punch and cookies from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. An encore performance is scheduled at 7 p.m., ending with a sign language performance to the song “Listen to My Song.”