After eight years, Co-Existence's Embracing Our Differences exhibit, on Sarasota's bay front has attracted over one million visitors, including almost 100,000 children through their education program. The luncheon, though very informative, was also a celebration of the impact it has made on our lives.
Debbie Hebert, a teacher at Booker, spoke about the curriculum she developed for teachers regarding the program. She shared with us that sometimes it is easier for children to speak out their feelings through their art.
This year's EOD co-chairs are Carol Buchanan and Graci and Dennis McGillicuddy. Carol and Dennis both spoke vividly regarding what this program has meant to them.
We watched a powerful video taped during last year's exhibit with various school children. It was quite moving. Sometimes I forget that people have to be reminded that though we are different on the outside, we have the same needs and wants on the inside. As one very small child at Venice-Nokomis United Methodist Pre-School said, "A smile is beautiful in any color" and drew an impactful picture of faces in many colors - green, red, blue, yellow with big smiles. Simple, eloquent, meaningful - all from a four-year-old.
Others seen in the crowd and not pictured below were Dr. Michael Meriwether, Gerri Aaron, Ina Schnell, Laurey Stryker, Helen McBean, Carolyn Michel, Harry Leopold, Janice Zarro, Barbara Ackerman, Nancy Roucher, Florence Jensen, Sam Savin, Helen Faigen, Dan Bailey, Sarah Pappas, Phil and Julie Delaney, Molly Morgan, Mary Beth Bos, Barbara Zdravecky, Dennis Stover, Kathryn and Bob Carr, Alice Rau, Jim Braun, Ilene Fox, Richard Dorfman, Jim and Tamara Ley.
|Debra Jacobs and Dennis McGillicuddy|
|Executive Director, Michael Shelton and Julie Milton|
|Nate Jacobs and Audrey Coleman|
|Pam Daniel and Victoria Leopold|
|Judi Gallagher and Margaret Callihan|
|Suzette Jones and Suzanne Atwell|
|Eva Slane and Joan Nixon|
|Jewel Ash, Jeremy Lisitza, and Marian Moss|
|Lois Stulberg and Bunny Skirboll|
|Lynn Robbins and Nancy Bailey|
|Renee Armbruster and Graci McGillicuddy|
|Christine Jennings and Jeanette Hyde|
|Renee Hamad and Beth Knopik|
|Isabel Norton and Carol Butera-Dutton|
|Carolyn Johnson and Eleanor Merritt Darlington|
|Gila Meriwether and BJ Creighton|
|Judy Cuppy and Lee-En Chung|
|Jocelyn Stevens and Roxie Jerde|
|Judy Cahn and Flora Majors|
|Bob and Dottie Garner|
|Scott Anderson, Cheri Ziegler, and Steve Ziegler|
|Some kind of peanut butter mousse heaven! You know I partly judge an event by its dessert and this was a yum, yum, yummy one!|