5th annual Royal Reformation camp big success

Published 4:24 pm Thursday, August 8, 2019

By Myra Bean

Tia Mckinney-Burgess has completed her 5th Annual Royal Reformation Fine Arts Camp, a free 3-day camp for girls in the Panola County community hosted at New Rock Hill Missionary Baptist Church in Sardis.

The Performing Arts Camp took place July 11-13,  and hosted 30 girls ranging in ages from 5-15. This year’s theme was “The Year of Perseverance.”

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The days were filled with action packed activities such as learning lyrical praise dance routines, public speaking workshops, youth fellowship, self-confidence workshops and much more.

This year the camp also included a self-defense class by 5th degree Black Belt and owner of Gladiator Martial Arts, David Burgess of Atlanta.

The camp concluded with a finale program where the girls performed a praise dance, public speaking, and a karate self-defense demonstration for family and friends.

The finale also included a dynamic speaker, Destini Bray of Detroit, alumna of Alabama State University and founder of the “I Am Greater Than” Mental Health Awareness Conference.

In addition, for the past five years,Mckinney’s camp has provided an internship opportunity for two students.  The interns are paid a stipend through donors or friends of the Royal Reformation Fine Arts Camp. This years interns were Morgan Williams and Jessica Cartwright.

This year the camp boasted record attendance from camp participants, parents, and family and friends from the Panola County community.   

The Royal Reformation Fine Arts Camp is designed to introduce children and youth to the arts and offer them a positive outlet in the community.

This year, more than ever, Royal Reformation has equipped our young girls with the spirit to persevere and press through any challenge they may face, she said.

With the support of the community  Mckinney intends for Royal Reformation to expand in the coming years, exposing more girls to visual and performing arts, public speaking, and self defense courses.

Mckinney is a graduate of Alabama State University  where she obtained a degree in English Language Arts with a concentration in Theatre Arts and has been performing in stage plays and dance showcases since the age four.

Mckinney is  a fourth grade English teacher at Green Hill Intermediate School in Sardis.

She is the daughter of retired Major Bobby Sledge and Colonel (Attorney) Tammie Mckinney-Sledge, United States Air Force; granddaughter of Lawrence and Ethel Mckinney of Sardis, and the late Jessie Marie Burgess of Batesville; and the great-granddaughter of the late Edna Wright Miles of Sardis.

Cutlines:    Green Hill fourth grade teacher Tia Mckinney-Burgess has plans to expand her Fine Arts Camp.

Girls ages 5-15 participated in the 3-day camp held at  New Rock Hill Missionary Baptist Church in Sardis.  (Contributed)