Commissioner Stuart’s November Message
While we finally begin to enjoy cooler weather, at least in Florida terms, I am excited for the opportunity to share a little bit about what is happening around our Great City.
While it may sound cliché, I am truly thankful for our city and its residents. As a lifelong Orlandoan whose son, daughter, three brothers, two sisters, and their families all still live in our community, this is more than just the place I call home. It is the place that I miss when I am away and the place that I want to, for the rest of my life, dedicate my time and resources to improving.
Someone once said to, “Hem your blessings with thankfulness so they don’t unravel.” One way we can put into perspective all we have to be thankful for is to spend quality time with our loved ones and support others in need where we can. As we also celebrate Veterans’ Day this month, what better way to actively show your gratitude than by supporting our active troops, our veterans and their families?
Check out Orlando Museum of Art’s interpretation of The Yellow Ribbon Project. The Yellow Ribbon project is a community art movement that involves “fiber bombing” trees with yellow cord to raise awareness for veterans and spark a conversation about how we as a country can support them. Here in Orlando, the Museum of Art is collaborating with local artist Macrame Momma to install yellow “ribbons” throughout Loch Haven Park, which will be on display through December 1st. Visit omart.org
Also, please join us on Saturday, November 9th as we celebrate our veterans with the City’s annual Veterans’ Day parade in Downtown Orlando at 11 a.m. For more details, please visit orlando.gov.
Another way to support our veterans is to participate in the Camaraderie Foundation’s 8th annual Ruck Sack Race 5 or 10 K taking place on November 16th in Lake Nona. Camaraderie Foundation is a wonderful local charity that helps connect veterans who are struggling with the reintegration process with counseling services and community support. For more information on this race where you can “walk, run, or ruck a mile in their boots,” visit camaraderiefoundation.org.
Many other events are taking place around the City this month, providing great ways to spend quality time with friends and family as we kick off the holiday season.
In College Park, enjoy their 18th annual Jazz Fest event taking place this year on Saturday, November 9th beginning at 5 p.m. Enjoy this wonderful street festival along Edgewater Drive, between Smith and Clayton Street, which has grown to include 12 bands performing on three stages. Visit collegeparkmainstreet.com for all of the details about this fun-filled evening.
There are many events this month where you can find the perfect give for that hard-to-buy-for person in your life, all while shopping local and helping to invest in our community. Join the Council of 101 at the Orlando Museum of Art for their annual Festival of Trees extravaganza taking place November 15th through 24th from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. In its 33rd year, the festival not only inspires with its one-of-a kind decorated trees of all sizes, wreaths, table décor and more, it offers a magical shopping marketplace, which showcases unique holiday items, toys and gifts for everyone on your list. Visit orlandofestivaloftrees.com for all of the details.
Another great event to get into the holiday spirit is Ivanhoe Village’s annual Jingle Eve event taking place this year on Saturday, November 23rd in and around Gaston Edwards Park in the heart of Ivanhoe Village. Enjoy a Children’s Holiday Village, a 12 Wines of Christmas, live music, food trucks, vendors and more. Jingle Eve is a free family-friendly event, with food and drinks available for purchase or through special ticket package. Visit ivanhoevillage.org for more information about this wonderful event.
Finish out the month by bypassing shopping on Black Friday in favor of enjoying our local stores on Small Business Saturday, November 30th. In our Audubon Park Garden District enjoy their annual Shop Small Sip and Stroll event that afternoon from 2-5 p.m. Enjoy libations throughout the district, shopping specials, all while enjoying live music and holiday window displays through the district. For tickets and more information, visit audubonparkgardens.com.
As I watched this year speed by, I still can’t believe I am writing about Christmas, but all of these events serve as a wonderful kickoff to the holiday season.
Once again, thanks for your support. Thanks for everything you do to make our community a better place and Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.