Photo by Elaine Rackley
Renowned rap artist Juaquin Malphurs, known as Waka Flocka Flame, gave away turkey dinners at the Riverdale Town Center.
RIVERDALE — A well known rapper from Clayton County gave away turkey dinners to needy families Friday.
Juaquin Malphurs, 26, better known by his stage name “Waka Flocka Flame” of Mizay Entertainment and DTLR, a men’s apparel store, delivered 260 turkey dinners to families gathered at Riverdale Town Center located at 7200 Church Street in Riverdale.
“I think this is wonderful,” said single mom Pattie Coleman, as she began to cry. “We are struggling right now. We really need this. I am so grateful. He just doesn’t know how much he’s helping me and my children.”
Nearly 150 people filled the center. Children attending the turkey giveaway, bounced on inflatables that lined the wall of the room. The youngsters feasted on free popcorn, hot dogs, and nachos.
Waka Flocka Flame (Malphurs) is known for numerous hit tunes, including “O Let’s Do It” which rose to No. 7 on Billboard Rap Songs chart.
Malphurs’ mother and CEO of Mizay Entertainment, Debra Antney, said it was only fitting to give away turkey dinners at the town center.
“I bought my first home here in Riverdale and I have a business here,” Antney said.
Riverdale officials took on the task of locating the needy families to attend the event. The parents were required to present a letter showing proof they had children enrolled in Clayton County schools before entering the center.
“Last year, people picked-up dinner boxes with their heads held down,” Antney said. “This year, we wanted it to be fun for the children.”
Antney said she and her son added the children’s activities because they did not want the event to appear as though it was a handout.
She said she recalls standing in line as a child, with her mother waiting for food from the government.
“I remember when they gave away cheese and powdered milk,” Antney added. “I remember standing in line doing that when I was younger with my mother. People would drive by and stare at us.”
Sherri Goodall, community outreach manager for DTLR, said the store partnered with the renowned rapper to connect with Clayton County residents.
“During this time of year, people are in need and we wanted make sure that we are giving back,” Goodall said.
The turkey dinners included collard greens, sweet potatoes, and cornbread, according to Goodall.
Janice Addison attended the turkey dinner giveaway with her two children, Arthur Jennings, 16, and Jonita Davis, 14.
“I am blessed to be here,” Addison said. “Both of my kids are in special education at school and for them to see a famous rapper like Waka Flocka give back to the community, to me that makes him a good Samaritan.”
Another rapper, Rashad Ballard, known as “Lil’ Chuckee” of New Orleans, was on hand to perform his “Wop” dance song during the event. Ballard said he is scheduled to give away turkeys Tuesday in his home town.
“I think it is powerful for rappers to give back by helping out families that are in need,” Ballard said. “For Waka Flocka to be from here and giving back like this is amazing to me.”