Growth and Change in 2020

Alexa Benhart

, Lifestyle

Without a care in the world

One moment, I snapped a selfie with my friends in front of the Empire State Building, laughing and enjoying the final moments of our spring break. Soon we would all part ways, approaching the last semester of our college careers. For now, though, we enjoyed New York City without a care. Then our phones all buzzed in unison. Our spring break was extended a week and our college was going online for the rest of the semester. Surely, we would be back for graduation though, right? COVID had to be temporary.

 

Changing times

 

Of course, that was not the case. At first, I was incredibly upset. I didn’t spend the last semester with my friends — I spent it doing online classes in my childhood bedroom. Opportunities disappeared right before my eyes. Graduation became an online ceremony. But after I mourned the experiences I would miss, I realized I had to make the most of the situation. After all, my cat “conferred” my college degree during an online Zoom call. Not many people can say that!

While 2020 has been full of new challenges, new hills to climb, and new setbacks, it has also provided incredible opportunities for growth. Small businesses and people alike are proving time and time again the resiliency of the human spirit. Instead of letting hardships crush them, many are choosing to reinvent who they are and what they do.

 

 

Embracing Growth

Old Town Cornelius is one such organization rising to the new challenges. You may recognize Old Town Cornelius from their large presence in both the historic Cornelius community and beyond. Prior to COVID, Old Town Cornelius masterminded beloved monthly street festivals and community events, such as ’Tawba Walk or Christmas in Cornelius. I was lucky enough, upon struggling to find a job post-graduation, to stumble upon their doorstep. A new path opened to me after a chance interview.

 

Bella Love and Old Town Cornelius

I’m now brewing coffee at Old Town Public House and will be working at Bella Love/Old Town Cornelius events. It’s been exciting to see the big plans Old Town Cornelius has in store. They’ve used this time to recollect and reinvent. We are looking forward to using our new outdoor patio in the future.

Formed to cultivate the growing cultural arts scene, Old Town Cornelius exists to uplift local businesses, artists, and amenities. The organization facilitates the incredible community members and businesses already in the area while also injecting a strong sense of brand unity, purpose, and creative economy.

 

More than a brand

Upon this time of reflection, Old Town Cornelius became more than a brand — it’s a movement. They are now more excited than ever to come back to community events in 2021 with a bang. The new calendar will be published soon.

 

Keep dreaming

 

 

We all have had the chance to look inwards, to reevaluate who we are and, like Old Town Cornelius, choose to redefine our path. It’s not always easy to see the light these days, but it’s important to always keep dreaming. After all, when will we choose to make that new step forward, if not now?

 

 

 

 

 

Cat illustration and children photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

 

 

Alexa is a recent college graduate from Virginia Commonwealth University, where she received a degree in English. When she is not writing or reading, she enjoys obsessing over theme parks, grabbing coffee with friends, or chasing after her mischievous cat, Mowgli. She can be found working events with Bella Love and Old Town Cornelius or brewing up coffee at Old Town Public House.

 

 

 

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