After several months of planning and a few days of anxiety, the weather was perfect, the volunteers were amazing, and the Festival of Lights was a resounding success!
Judkins Park looked magical. The music and performers were varied and shared their passion in such a cool way with us, and neighbors chatted with neighbors, sang some songs or danced together and the longest night of the year was just a bit less long.
Thanks first to all the volunteers who helped with planning and then doing the work needed to make this a success. Most of the event was paid for by our friends at the Central Seattle Drug Free Communities Coalition, who do not only great work in the schools with kids but also work on the hard issues of street use in the area. This would also not have been possible without the work and support of City of Seattle Parks and Recreation for free use of the park (and their incredibly helpful park staff). We thank the Colman Neighborhood Association and Jackson Place Community Council which border Judkins Park for their support and donations. We were able to provide free hot chocolate, coffee and snacks because of the generous donations of locally-owned businesses: Darigold, Caffe Appassionato, and the Promenade Red Apple. When you shop, shop local!
Our performers were incredibly generous with their time as we were only able to come up with a small gratuity fee. The small band but big klezmer sounds of the Bus Tunnel Bandits lead the parade from 23rd and Jackson into the park. Kibibi Monie of the Nu Black Arts West Theatre told some really great stories from Ghana, Uncle Rod and Uncle Gregg hammed up some Christmas classic and got the crowd singing along as they played ukelele. The Origami Ghosts used to live in the neighborhood so were excited to play some of their original songs they wrote while living here. Finally, we had a lovely Unknown Wassailants singing ye olde Christmas carols. THANKS TO ALL. Let’s hope we can figure out how to get more money so we can pay the artists the money they deserve!
On to the pictures!
In addition to our regular meetings on the future of Jackson and redevelopment (Next meeting Jan 15), we’re invested into this idea that to get neighbors to trust and work with each other on hard issues, it’s good to meet each other over FUN STUFF first. We’re trying to figure out a jazz walk in March and then are building a giant hopscotch from Jackson Street, across the CD, to our friends on Union Street in May. We need help and your ideas, so drop us a line and spread the word! firstname.lastname@example.org