Fall Fest Heartfelt Thanks
You continue to inspire me by demonstrating just how hard you are willing to work to advocate for our kids in this school and everyone attached to it. This year’s Fall Festival was a rough one. It was HUGE. It was sprawling. It was all encompassing. It was exhausting. And once again what we accomplished was AMAZING!! We had nine food stations…NINE (Dumplings, Posole, Aguas Frescas, Tacos, Pork BBQ, Pie, Nachos, Hot Dogs, and our very first Filipino food booth ever!) we had over double the amount of total booths this year, a haunted house that involved the construction of a pirate ship (still shaking my head in disbelief over that), gigantic balloon arches and columns, gorgeous and wonderfully artistic signs, a sno cone machine, a donated $4,000 lighting package and a free team of electricians to supply power and light it all and even an Alpaca named Cuzco in a petting zoo full of cuteness. We are insane!!!
My heart swells with emotion and pride just thinking about all of you and how you each gave your greatest effort at making everything on our monumental to-do list happen. As we cleaned out room 24 almost immediately after, (the new music room woot-woot!) and measured the closets for instrument storage, I thought of all of us and how hard we worked. And last Wednesday when that first ETM LA class began, it was all worth it. Once again, what we achieved is nothing short of a miracle.
The other unforeseen magic that was spawned from our efforts was the enormous support of our neighborhood local businesses, corporate sponsors, and giant-hearted donations of our Elysian Valley/Frogtown community neighbors, many of whom don’t even have kids at Dorris Place. Upon revisiting each of them to thank them, across the board they have all expressed interest and desire to help us reach even further in the future with supplies, goods, services, grants and more.
Your unfathomable dedication to deliver this year’s Fall Fest created the very bandwagon for these other sources of support to jump on. They want to help because of you and all your effort, and because in doing all of this, we’ve highlighted just how deserving this school and all the people in it truly are.
We went to Metzler’s Violin & Strings yesterday and a giant chunk of our instruments had just arrived, which means we should have them by next week! The giant pile of half unwrapped violins and cellos looked like Christmas morning under what would have had to have been a tree the size of a semi truck! We took pictures. Wait until you see them, they’re gorgeous!!
As room 24 comes together, and the instruments are delivered, and “orchestra” gets added to the list of incredible learning opportunities at Dorris Place, remember, you did this. Each of you. You added a whole new CURRICULUM to a SCHOOL!!! Be proud. Be terribly proud of yourselves, of each other, of what an unbelievable team we are, and most importantly, be proud of the fact that you are teaching your kids, our kids, what it is to make a difference and create positive change in this world, even and especially in the darkest of times.
I deeply and humbly thank you all. You guys are the best!
Your biggest fan,
2012-13 President’s Welcome Back
Looking forward to seeing you all at the POD Luck Saturday, August 18th. It will be fun to catch up with old friends and meet all the new members of the Dorris Place Family. We are still looking for volunteers to help save our spot, trucks or SUVs to help transport and clean up volunteers so call or text if you can help (574)265-8344. Thank you!
As I prepare and update the newest volunteer forms for our 5-6:30pm Dorris Place Open House tonight I can’t help but be blown away by what we’ve accomplished in such a short time. The old form asks who wants to help on picture day and I’m chuckling, thinking “Picture day? We just ushered in a violin and cello fund and a brand new killer library!” I think back to the Fall Fest, and how none of us slept for a week wondering how we’d all pull it off and then all huddled together for a group photo at the end of the night to celebrate that we actually did it in spectacular fashion.
Last night we learned that our very first grant proposal was a complete success! We were granted $4,000.00 by the Elysian Valley Neighborhood Council to put toward our new instrumental music program. That, plus the money raised from candy sales and the Fall Fest means this music program is really happening, Folks. We did it! We changed something! And walking into that library of ours and curling up on that crazy rock rug under our dreamy tree, looking out at the cloud-painted sky makes me realize…we changed everything. Everything is different. Teachers have room parents, web pages with Amazon.com wishlists, support from parents, we all talk with one another more, we all laugh together more, we all showed up to vote for and stand behind our faculty through these terrifying budget cuts. POD lives! You can feel it in the hallways, the classrooms, and certainly in the library.
I’m flashing back to last June, in Susan Schmidt’s office. She is sifting through her filing cabinet when I ask for her wish list and she tells me, “Sure, well I dream of having an orchestra program for the students, but with these budget cuts…”
Now look where we are…a new website, (props Yolanda), a new blog (thanks Joyce), a 501(c)3 # (Namaste Anne Marie), a new library …a new era at Dorris Place. And all in under 7 months…and soon the off-key sounds of our kids playing classical instruments. Wow.
As I type, I softly hum the tune and eventually sing a little…
‘Neath the hills of Elysian stands an honored place, dear to all we can recall
our years at Dorris Place. Memories of childhood hold a special place
friends we all join hands to call, “We love you Dorris Place.”
….k, I’m getting choked up now. Gotta run, hair on fire, deadline to make, you know how I roll.
Tons of gratitude to anyone whoever helped us do anything at all, you know who you are,