A local videographer who is on a campaign to promote the positive side of Pine Bluff has scheduled a prayer walk to begin at 6:45 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 6, at the Jefferson County Courthouse.
Marina Ross, a videographer currently working on a documentary of the city’s history called “Pine Bluff: Then and Now,” began filming nighttime walks around the city on Facebook Live more than a month ago to dispel its dangerous reputation. She has been joined by Wil Jenkins, a downtown property owner, and various residents. Their efforts have attracted attention from statewide TV news stations several times.
Ross said the Sunday evening prayer walk will take about 30 minutes and be filmed on Facebook Live. It is intended to once again highlight to the city’s positives. The idea came from what she called a “super fan,” who suggested it one on of the live videos she posted to her Facebook page, “Pine Bluff: Then and Now.”
“Super fans ask, we’ll listen, and we’re going to do it,” Ross said. “We’re going to do a lot of stuff. We get a lot of requests and suggestions, a lot of people want to meet with us.”
Ross said she’ll be joined by Jenkins and the Rev. George and Pamela Waters from Rose Hill Missionary Baptist Church. She hopes to attract other faith leaders and residents to the prayer walk. While many prayer walks are scheduled in response to social ills, such as a recent spike in homicides in Pine Bluff, Ross said that isn’t the case this time.
“Promote the positive,” she said. “The prayer is good. We pray for the leaders, the poor, the youth, the women and men. I mean, the sky is the limit you can pray for. Living in the city and showing the unity. I mean, one day left [until the prayer walk], I cannot wait. I love to pray.”
Pine Bluff Mayor Shirley Washington said she supported the prayer walk.
“When community members volunteer to come together to pray for our city it blesses my heart,” Washington said. “Whether it is a prayer meeting at a local church, a prayer rally, or a prayer walk through the streets, I know it will make a difference in transforming our city.”
Pine Bluff Alderman Bill Brumett said he would not be able to attend due to a family engagement, but he was excited to hear about it.
“I’m excited they’re doing it,” Brumett said. “I hope it goes well.”