This year’s high school graduating class may have lost out on their prom and senior ditch day, but local cities across Lake County are visibly honoring the more than 2,400 graduates with the help of a local businessman. Timothy Totten, owner of Celebrating Heroes, had an idea to create individual banners for each graduate and worked with the area’s public and private schools to use the seniors’ yearbook photos. Totten and Eustis Mayor, Michael Holland, then worked with the other local city governments to seek their willingness to hang banners for their graduates.
So far, the banners have been installed in Mount Dora, Eustis and Tavares. Umatilla and Leesburg banner programs should be kicking off over the next few days. Banners for three South Lake County schools will be installed at the schools ahead of their graduations on June 11th and 12th. Mount Dora’s Class of 2020 banners, honoring Mount Dora High and Mount Dora Christian Academy, are on display along the fence at the Lawn Bowling Association and the Mount Dora Marina, Mount Dora High School and MDCA Bulldog. Banners for Eustis graduates are hanging from downtown light poles, and Tavares has displayed them along the fence at Tavares Town Square.
The bulk of the program costs have been advanced by Totten's company, with donations being accepted to offset the expense. Additional support for the program has come from the donation of manpower and funding from local cities, as well as a handful of local donors.
"I didn't want to wait until we could raise all the money, because there is only a very limited amount of time when graduations and festivities normally happen," said Totten of the effort to pay for the project. "Without counting manpower and artist time for our company, the printing cost was more than $35,000, but that's a small price to pay for honoring these great kids."
To make a donation to the effort, interested parties can visitwww.celebratingheroes.com or make a donation to Timothy Totten at any United Southern Bank branch.
For more news and events in Mount Dora, Tavares & Eustis, click here.
It’s a time-honored tradition -- with a twist. Every year Lake County’s high schools have 'Color Wars' during Spirit Week in the lead-up to their Homecoming. Freshmen, sophomore, junior and senior classes each are assigned a different color and compete to see which class can show the most spirit with their color.
Due to COVID-19, seniors in all local schools are foregoing their traditional graduation festivities, so the communities of Mount Dora, Tavares & Eustis are being asked to ratchet up Color Wars a notch or two. During what would have been the week of graduation, May 18 through May 23, Mount Dora Buzz is encouraging residents, business owners, students, civic clubs and city governments to show their support of their local Class of 2020 by proudly displaying their colors. Mount Dora will use orange, Eustis blue, and Tavares red.
The sky's the limit for creativity. People can splash their community’s color on mailboxes with bows and cars with ribbons or they can opt to go big with colored outdoor lights, colorful store displays, posters and yard signs. Restaurants can use colored tablecloths or banners. It’s the perfect time to “go big or go home.” Residents, business owners, students and government leaders are encouraged to send photos of their colorful community spirit in support of their seniors to Mount Dora Buzz, so it can be posted and shared.
Congratulations, Class of 2020, we're so proud of you! For more news and events in Mount Dora, Tavares & Eustis, click here and download the area's free mobile app.