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Wednesday, November 14 was a very special day for the Town of Oakland! Local and state officials joined the Town Commission and staff, community leaders and investment and development partners to celebrate the groundbreaking of The Arts and Heritage Center at Oakland. This nearly 3000 square foot venue will highlight the Town of Oakland’s history, as well as serve as a space that concentrates on the arts, something the Town is very passionate about.
Mayor Kathy Stark kicked off the ceremony by talking about the impact this facility will have on our community. The Orange County Fire Rescue Department Honor Guard presented the colors, followed by a moving rendition of the National Anthem by Oscar Negron from the Honor Guard. A special performance was given by the Oakland Avenue Charter School Choir, directed by music teacher Kyle Zavada.
Among the distinguished guests present was Representative Geraldine Thompson, who has been a champion for the Town of Oakland, assisting in and supporting economic development for our town and West Orange County. Other dignitaries present included former Orange County Commissioner Scott Boyd, as well as representatives from the offices of Mayor-elect Jerry Demings and Congresswoman Val Demings. Guest speakers included Robert Miller, of R. Miller Architecture, Inc., who brought a vivid description of what the venue will look like and offer, as well as Commissioner Joseph McMullen, who shared the “vision” behind this project.
The groundbreaking represented a culmination of efforts by many people, both in the private and public sectors and is a testament to how a vision can become reality when communities works together. The Town of Oakland is proud to collaborate with the Winter Garden Heritage Foundation, who will provide logistical support with the historic preservation as well as identifying and procuring potential donors and managing the Capital Campaign.