By Jacob Engels
On Wednesday, I got to sit down with Elizabeth Horn, one of the theatre teachers at Timber Creek High School who is organizing the East Orlando Festival of the Arts. The East Orlando Festival of the Arts is hosted by the Timber Creek Thespians and will be held this Saturday (March 9th) at Timber Creek High School. Elizabeth, who holds both a bachelors and masters degree in theater has been helping lead the Timber Creeks Theatre Department for four years.
Where did the idea for the East Orlando Festival of the Arts come from?
We were doing a lot of fundraisers for our productions and they were proving to be quite ineffective in both helping us raise awareness for the theater program and reach our fundraising goals. That’s when we had the idea of trying to hold a one day fundraising event where we could showcase multiple productions from multiple groups. We reached out to other performing arts programs and groups in the area and began putting together what eventually became the East Orlando Festival of the Arts. Most of my event planning has been limited to just productions we are having at Timber Creek, so this is the first time I have been involved in something of this scale.
How has it been received so far?
The reception has been great. All of groups have banded together to make this event a success. Orlando Aerial Arts, Magic Curtain Productions, Avalon School of Music, Orlando Repertory Theatre, and a local band called Desperate Endevour will be participating.
Outside of the performing arts community, we have also had lots of support. There is a real thirst for an event like this in our area.
Are any local businesses pitching in?
Yes. Gators Dockside is providing food for the event, Leaps and Bounce will have some bounce houses available for kids to play in, and Avalon Park Jewelers has graciously donated two $500 pieces of jewelery to be given away at the event. 11th Hour is a local business that helped with our printing.
Will this happen every year? And where does the money raised go?
We are hoping for it to become an annual event. It’s a great learning experience for everyone involved. It really pushes the performers as artists and teaches our drama students about volunteerism and leadership.
The festival is benefiting a local charity, Give Kids The World. 10% of proceeds will be donated to them. They are a non-profit organization that fulfills the wishes of children with life-threatening illnesses. They have done a lot for children and families all around the world and we are just thrilled to be able to assist them. Other proceeds will help cover cost of festivals, state competitions, and assist future productions put on by the drama department here at Timber Creek.
You can learn more about the festival and the schedule for Saturday by visiting their website at www.eofestival.com
Jacob Engels, is the Founder of East Orlando Post. Along with the Post, he owns several other business and is currently enrolled at Valencia College. Jacob has lived in Avalon Park since it’s founding and enjoys playing with his black Labradoodle Jasper, listening to indie rock, and seeking out new business ventures. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org