MBHM – The Village Market

Making Black History Moments (MBHM): In January of 2016, Dr. Lakeysha Hallmon begins offering master classes under the banner of “It Takes A Village” with a focus on supporting entrepreneurship development, financial literacy and women’s empowerment. This effort would quickly grow into The Village Market, an Atlanta-based ecosystem reaching small businesses in 21 states and four countries, with an official partnership with The Bahamas.

I posted a status online a few weeks ago that I know some amazing people doing incredible things in the world. One of those people who I admire and love with my whole heart is Dr. Lakeysha Hallmon (yes, I use her whole name and title).

Dr. Lakeysha Hallmon, The Village Market Founder

Key stepped out on faith in a way many people never will and through trials and triumphs launched what is now a vital and growing business ecosystem that promotes black excellence in business on a daily basis.

The Village Market Atlanta 2017

A few years ago I had the opportunity to attend one of the Village Markets which was a bigger deal than it sounds at first considering I have to make my way over from Lubbock, Texas, to Atlanta for the occasion. The energy was heavy in the air. It rained hard during that market but it didn’t deter people from coming out spending their dollars with all those vendors.

Comic Relief From Our Stairwell Rain Shelter

If you’d like to read about that adventure and see more pictures from the event CLICK HERE.

Yes, The Village Market is an amazing accomplishment and its mission to “empower entrepreneurs through education, purpose-driven events, and community engagement,” needs to be shared by all of us. But what I am most proud of my little sister for is the beautiful way she works to empower others and protect her energy.

I love her slogan that “Support is a verb”. I love the reminders she graciously shares that “self care is not optional and in fact supports excellence in servanthood”.

Key and the team at The Village Market are a shining example of black excellence and if you haven’t looked into the good work they are doing there is no time like the present.

To learn more about the work of The Village Market Atlanta visit their site at https://thevillagemarketatl.com.


Marta C. Youngblood is the founder and creative engine behind TheWRITEaddiction creatives co-op founded in 2014 as a virtual community supporting writers from all over the United States of America. Marta’s passion drives her to support the success of creatives from all walks of life to honor their talent and share it with the world. She believes that working in our creative callings does not have to be synonymous with being a “starving artist” and helps creatives master the business skills and strategies they need to work in their gifts.

MBHM – The Black Icee Project

Making Black History Moments (MBHM): On January 30, 2020, twenty-seven African-Americans made history by running a half/full marathon in Antarctica with the Black Icee Project.

Welcome to Black History Month 2020! I am so excited that you are here and reading this first post on my new writing project, This Girl Write Here. I can not think of a better way to launch into February than to bring you all 29 days of black excellence which I have titled, “Making Black History Moments”. This year I am going to focus on celebrating those of us who are making history in the here and now so you are definitely going to want to hit this subscribe button and let me help “learn” you something. 😉

I am not new to the blogosphere by any stretch. In fact, I believe I first started blogging long before it was fashionable about 18 years ago. Basically, if my blogs were children I would be sending the first ones off to college right now. That’s really how I seeing many of my writing projects as labors of love.

So without future delay, let’s jump into today’s black excellence feature.

The Black Icee Project is a group of amateur runners from all over the United States of America who came together to for a common purpose to complete a half or full marathon in Antarctica together. When the project first launched in January 12, 2019, in Atlanta, I became aware of the effort through my amazing sisterfriend, Cassandra, who is one of the 29 who completed this awesome undertaking.

First, I want you to picture what the commitment to completing a marathon is when you work like regular folks and have life stuff like regular folks. I have a half marathon coming up and I am in awe of those who prepare to do twice that so my hat is off to this group from jump.

Now, imagine running this marathon on a continent that most humans will never even set foot on. Yeah, let that sink in.

If that isn’t enough, this experience was billed as costing $12,000- $15,000 per participant. 😳. Now, I don’t know all of the people who belong to BIP and I am not a gambling woman, but I would be willing to bet you there weren’t any trust fund babies among them. These folks invested in this endeavor with their own hard earned funds and fundraised to help each other afford to do this for themselves and I dare say for the culture because how many times have we heard things like “black folks don’t run long distance”?

Black Icee Project at White Continent Marathon 2020

I am proud of the fact that I was able to provide a small bit of monetary support to see this idea come to fruition. Do not misunderstand me, I am not bragging by saying I gave to the effort. I am making a point that there are opportunities for all of us to contribute to causes all the time and if someone you love asks you to help them do something that has deep meaning for them if feels good to help if you have the ability to do so. I knew I could not go to be with my sisterfriend on this amazing journey but I very much felt like I was there in spirit.

Cassandra Gilliam at King George Island, Antarctica 🇦🇶

Completing this marathon is not what makes this woman amazing (though I am still in awe). Her beautiful spirit and her commitment to being an extraordinary educator are her true superpowers. Who could have imaged that little girl from Mississippi would one day stand on the continent of Antarctica as a living, breathing example of what you can do if you set your mind to it and put in the work!

Kudos to Heather King the Creator of the Black Icee Project. (Y’all, go read up on this incredible woman HERE). Congratulations to all the members of Black Icee Project and my Cassandra for doing all of us proud!

And do yourself a favor and hit my subscribe button so you do not miss a single day of Making Black History Moments.


Marta C. Youngblood is the founder and creative engine behind TheWRITEaddiction creatives co-op founded in 2014 as a virtual community supporting writers from all over the United States of America. Marta’s passion drives her to support the success of creatives from all walks of life to honor their talent and share it with the world. She believes that working in our creative callings does not have to be synonymous with being a “starving artist” and helps creatives master the business skills and strategies they need to work in their gifts.