Once I pass through the Oak Creek gates of my community, I am home. The fountain that greets every resident at the entrance of the neighborhood is surrounded by a pond; a pond where Canadian Geese gather and feel welcomed to swim. Not too far from that pond is the community pool, where the residential families come together to bond with neighbors while cooling off from the summer heat. Nearby is the community center where neighborhood meetings are held to discuss how to keep the area safe while continuing to grow. There are many community events held outside in the spacious parking lot. These events range from movie nights to fireworks to barbeques. The community environment and activities are ways of bringing us together because at one point this same area that fills us with joy and excitement, separated us as slaves.
In the distance, beyond the pond and beyond the clubhouse, at the peak of a hill, is a yellow plantation house. It stands there untouched as a historic landmark. A landmark that although exists as a reminder of the enslavement of African Americans, is now a proud symbol of how far we have all come since slavery. With about 97% of the Oak Creek community African American, we stand proud and tall knowing that the land that used to own our ancestors is now owned by us. This is why it is so evident that we are trying to build up this area and our community, because we want to show that we are more than our past, we are the future. There are currently homes being built all throughout the neighborhood by prestigious home builders: Toll Brothers, NV Homes, and Ryan Homes, proving that Oak Creek is continuing to thrive and wants to expand the community to share its attainment with others. It isn’t just a neighborhood, it’s a home for me and the rest of the community. A home for this residential family.