By Cherri Gregg
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Communities across the city of “brotherly love” showed affection for dads this Father’s Day Weekend.
Daddy University Inc. hosted a full day of father focused events Saturday at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, beginning with a National Father’s Conference in the morning..
“We had a workshop on better communication, dealing with children, how to get on their Facebook account- you know, the one they don’t want you to see,” says Joel Austin, a father of four and the CEO of Daddy University. ” We have workshops on parenting for dads, how to get your money together. We want to build dads up and teach fathers how to be better to have better families.”
The evening ended with the group’s 8th Annual Daddy-daughter dance, with an Alice in Wonderland theme. More than 600 dads and daughters attended the sold-out event.
“We have a princess in the background- we have dinner, dancing, pictures taken,” says Austin. “This builds self-esteem in girls and helps strengthen the bond between dads and daughters.
“He’s nice, he always has time for me and he always makes me feel like a princess,” says Kaya Johnson, 10. She sat next to her dad, dressed in a white dress with sequin, topped with a tiara. She says she loves Father’s Day.
“Dad and I can go out and have fun and just spend time together,” she says.
Across town in South Philadelphia at Chew Playground, dozens of families grilled, kids played and the community cheered fathers at the first Celebration of Fatherhood barbeque.
“We took time out to bring the community fathers together with their families,” says state representative Jordan Harris, who helped organize the event, along with Unity in the Community. They gave awards in the categories of “Spiritual Father,” “Young Father,” and more.
“If I can just save one- I’ve accomplished a lot,” says Norman Best, who won the Community Father Award for his work with “Don’t Shoot, I want a Future” youth development program.
“I don’t believe in the myth that fathers are not proactive,” he says. “In my organization you’d be surprised at how many fathers come out with their children to share their talents and expertise.”
The celebration of dads will continue Sunday with the Father Day Rally Committee’s 24th annual Father’s Day Picnic at Belmont Grove Picnic Grounds near Belmont Mansion Drive & Chamounix Drive. The event runs from noon until 6 p.m. Click here for more information.