Nearly five hundred Homestead residents, City Council members, community leaders and distinguished dignitaries gathered in the heart of Downtown Homestead for the premiere of Building Homestead—Mayor Jeff Porter’s 2015 State of the City. Attendees, dressed in their best cold-weather wear, arrived on the evening of January 29th to find Losner Park transformed into a state-of-the-art outdoor theater worthy of any Hollywood premiere.
The concept of Building Homestead comes from Mayor Jeff Porter, who wanted to avoid the formal State of the City events of the past and create a more accessible way of showcasing the City’s progress. Building Homestead highlights all the exciting news of the past year and showcases members of the Homestead community who contribute day to day to the city’s progress. The short film will be available through different channels so residents, visitors and others interested in Homestead can see the city’s growth and vision.
As guests arrived, they enjoyed the sounds of modern lounge music and beautiful sunset lighting. The program began with Pastor Sabrina Pope’s invocation, a heartfelt blessing of thanks and gratitude. The Homestead Police Honor Guard then performed the presentation of colors and Lieutenant Colonel Kimberly McDonald led the crowd in the Pledge of Allegiance. After thanking his wife Cindy and family, as well as fellow council members, Mayor Porter introduced Building Homestead. “Instead of telling you what we have accomplished and where we are heading,” said Mayor Porter. “I am going to show you. We are thinking outside of the box here!”
Building Homestead showcases the strides being made to stimulate Homestead’s economy and improve opportunities in education, culture, and quality of life. From project-to-project and building-to-building, there are exciting developments happening in and around Downtown Homestead. Part of this was made possible by May’s Bond Referendum, where voters showed overwhelming support for Downtown revitalization projects—a big reason why the premiere took place in the heart of Historic Downtown.
As the film concluded to thunderous applause, Mayor Porter took the stage once again. “I want to thank each and every one of you for being here to share in our vision for the future. With such a diverse Council, it’s wonderful to be able to come together and really get things done to make Homestead a better place to live, work, and be entertained. Remember, revitalization doesn’t come from the government—it comes from you!”
After the Mayor concluded his thanks and recognition, attendees feasted on a beautiful spread of hors d’oeuvres, generously sponsored by Homestead Hospital. Guests continued to mingle long after the premiere—enjoying the evening while discussing Homestead’s bright future. Building Homestead can currently be seen on the City of Homestead’s local access channel (Comcast 77, ATT in the Menu under Government TV), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/CityofHomestead), and Vimeo (http://vimeo.com/cityofhomestead).