I want to take this opportunity to share with you in today’s blog post about a very special Hollywood film that is being made about a special needs program here in Huntsville, AL. Merrimack Hall Performing Arts Center is the location for the dance programs, Dance Your Dreams and Project Up that my daughter, Olivia, who was born with Down Syndrome, has participated in for over 4 years, now.
It is the absolute highlight of her week! This past year the owners, who renovated Merrimack Hall using their own money and started a non-profit organization to fund these very special programs, were approached by a team of producers from Hollywood, who had learned from Billy Bob Thornton about these programs. Billy Bob Thornton is a Hollywood actor many of you are familiar with and is also a musician, and has a band.
He and his band were one of the first performances at Merrimack hall. The musical performances, plays and productions that come to Merrimack Hall with their shows help fund the special needs programs, with a portion of the ticket sales going to the non-profit organization that supports these programs. After a visit to Merrimack Hall these producers were so inspired by our awesome children that they have decided to make a full length feature film based on the programs offered there and how life changing the programs have been not only for the children with special needs, but also for the volunteers and ultimately our entire community has been touched in some way because of these very special kids.
The film will be based around a fictitious story line that will portray what this program is all about and how it has touched lives in a wonderfully positive manner. The movie will be entitled, “Dreaming With Your Feet” and is being described as a cross between the “The Blind Side” and “Fame”. The plans are for the movie to be shot right here in Huntsville, AL. The producers want this movie to start a movement towards raising awareness and opening doors for people with special needs. Click on the above link to view more about this movie. I, personally, am not asking for contributions, but the number of views are critical, so please take a moment to view. And a huge thank you from Olivia and me for taking the time to do so!
|Olivia, (far left), with her friends and volunteers at Merrimack Hall.|
|Olivia and two of her best friends at Merrimack
before their winter recital.
|Olivia and one of the volunteers during a Dance Your Dreams winter recital.|
|Olivia, (center), at a performance for a retirement home in our community.
Below are some more pictures of Olivia and the many wonderful teens that have volunteered over the years at Merrimack Hall Performing Arts Center.
|Olivia and me|
|Brother, Preston and Olvia|
After the show…