April 30, 2015
(Sheneika Smith and her daughters, ZaiKharri and Alaijah)
Sheneika Smith is a native Ashevillian and the founder of Date My City, a social organization that exists to promote the engagement, advancement, and empowerment of communities of color in Asheville through coordinating social events that highlight Black history and engaging the Black community in downtown nightlife, as well as offering inclusive event planning services for businesses and organizations. Smith has over 15 years experience in event planning for nonprofits, church organizations and small businesses, and seeks to utilize her skills to create “vibrant, convivial experiences that also educate, inspiring self-directed action and a collective cultural revolution.”
Most recently, Date My City partnered with the Center for Diversity Education to host the event Asheville: From Slavery to Freedom, which commemorated the 150th anniversary of Stoneman’s March in Asheville. Stoneman’s March occurred when hundreds of newly freed slaves marched down Main Street (now Biltmore Avenue) out of Asheville with the union army, who had just brought news of the end of the Civil War and liberation from slavery. The Asheville: From Slavery to Freedom event took place in Pack Square Park downtown, and included speakers, poetry,and a performance from the inspirational Choir at Western Carolina University.
Sheneika Smith is a business coaching client at Mountain Bizworks, and recently completed the Birds Eye Business Planning Course. She says: “The Birds Eye Course was transformative, a great tipping point for my business idea. It allowed me to see that my dreams and passion, to manifest a cultural renaissance in this city, was not only feasible but could be expanded to employ economically disenfranchised communities. I’m grateful for this experience. I was in the company of other aspiring and creative minds and the continued support from business consultants is refreshingly encouraging!”
We’re inspired by Sheneika Smith’s vision, and look forward to the growth and positive impact that Date My City will surely have in the coming months and years! For more info about Date My City, go to: