WHILE many citizens ventured to beaches and other popular holiday spots over the hectic Easter weekend, members of the Mahon family gathered at the Settlement Recreation Ground, Manzanilla, on Easter Sunday, for their third Sports and Family Day.
The event, a staple on the family’s annual calendar, attracted at least three generations in a spirit of kinship and healthy rivalry.
Apart from the keenly-contested march past competition, activities included diaper race, sack race, maxi race, musical hoops, bun-eating and lime and spoon races.
The grandmothers and grandfathers of the Mahon clan also participated in a walking race which left spectators in stitches.
In the end, team Unity, dressed as April jokers in colourful outfits, got the judges nod for the march past while Hope, a predominantly female group, in African-inspired attire, won the overall sporting competition.
It was Ruth Mahon’s wish several years ago that her 12 children remain united after her death. And, indeed, Mahon’s children and their respective families have tried to honour the late matriarch’s request.
“Mammy had 12 children and her legacy always was togetherness and love,” said Ann-Marie Alonzo, one of her daughters.
Alonzo said in 1997, her mother had started a tradition of family expeditions during the July-August vacation.
“We would take buses and go to various parts of the country. But as time went on, Mammy died and what that did was bring us closer together. There was a need to keep the family united and as one.”
With this in mind, she said the men in the family started a Mother’s Day celebration in which all of the mothers were treated to sumptuous meals and pampered. The following year, the mothers would reciprocate for Father’s Day.
Alonzo said one of her brothers-in-law came up with the idea, three years ago, to host a sports and family day.
“It was not the traditional kind but one where we would do different events. But last year, we decided to take it to another level. So, we formed ourselves in groups because it’s over 100 of us.”
Alonzo said the family was eventually divided in to four groups, featuring various themes. She said this year, the themes were love, peace, peace and harmony and unity “because those are the strongholds of what our family needs to come together.”