Saturday, October 13, 2007

Senator Fred Smith Visits
Northampton County On BBQ Tour

The second BBQ of the day (and the 33rd so far) in the 100 County BBQ Tour of gubernatorial candidate Senator Fred Smith was held in the Gaston Lion's Club in Northampton County. You can read about the first stop in this related article on the Bertie County Patriot here .

After finishing up the Bertie County BBQ we convoyed up to the Roanoke Rapids area where Fred made a stop at the Roanoke Rapids Daily Herald for an interview with John Moeur, the Editor.

Next there was a private meeting with some business people from Roanoke Rapids who are enthusiastic about promoting their area and see Fred as the best candidate to support that. Finally we got to the Northampton County BBQ around 6:30 PM after what had already been (as usual for Fred) a long day.

In the last two weeks Fred Smith has gained significant momentum in the Governor's race, even getting recognized by one of the leading Democrat Party web sites, They spoke of Fred's surge as being the first serious movement of any candidate since the announcements by the major players earlier in the year.

Some of that movement is attributable to the enthusiastic endorsement of Senator Smith by Lee Greenwood, a man some call America's number one patriot. Greenwood is famous for his song, God Bless the USA.

The formal event in Northampton was kicked off by Danny Tolbert (shown below), Mayor of Gaston and Chairman of the Northampton County Republican Party who acted as master of ceremonies.

I was asked to provide the invocation and Deidre Jersey (shown below) sang the national anthem.

Then we ligned up to eat. The BBQ was, as it usually is, really great. (North Carolina seems to have at least one or two great BBQ restaurants in every county and Fred's people are good at finding them.)

While we ate, Fred spent his time talking with the people. Fred is really good with people and it is interesting to see how people react to him.

John Woods (shown above on right) was the person invited to introduce Senator Fred Smith to the gathering this night, since they went to high school together and played baseball on the same team.

Before Senator Smith came up, a video was played that introduced people to Senator Smith's family including his wife, Ginny, and mother, Eudell, and which ended with the campaign song "Good To Great", written and performed by Lee Greenwood (double click arrow above to hear song).

Senator Fred Smith spoke of his love for our State of North Carolina, and his belief that government is out of touch with what the majority of people want. He talked about the things that make us great and the things that help us enjoy the freedom of our great nation America. These talks are always a great dialogue, and in Northampton County there were a number of questions about illegal immigration and its impact on the future of our nation and state. This issue seems to be getting more and more focus.

Though I have seen Fred make a powerful speech in a more formal environment, these talks are always low key, personal and sincere. It is part of what makes them such a great connection between Fred and the people who come out.

The meeting was closed by singing "God Bless America", led by Deidre Jersey. This is the traditional way that Fred closes his BBQs and it is always a great ending.

Afterwards Fred always takes time to finish signing autographs and talking with those who came to meet him. Fred really lives the theme of his autobiography, "The difference between good and great is a little extra effort."

The Northampton County stop on the Fred Smith Statewide BBQ Tour was a resounding success thanks to all the great people who came out.


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