Being here, in this beautiful downtown with its laughing, smiling people, feels like home. It feels like being nostalgic for a time and a place many of us never lived in… it feels like the realization of the American dream.
Rocking country music plays in the background as twilight sets in. The flickering lights of a carousel shine out, softly lighting the area, as crickets and cicadas nestled in the surrounding trees set off the atmosphere to a perfect summery sweetness. Parents stand in small groups, talking, laughing, fanning, sipping, as children run around clutching hard-won prizes and sweet treats.
A sprawling, 1000-acre campus comes into view as the driver flits by a white picket fence, open, grassy lawns, and wide, blacktopped roads and paths. With several beautiful, tan brick buildings hugging the manicured grounds, the history as well as the beauty of the campus is obvious at a glance.