Imagine being a high school band student and hearing that a fire tore through your school damaging the band rehearsal space and lockers including the equipment and instruments stored inside. That’s what happened at Lake County’s East Ridge High, which is located in Clermont, FL – a town very close to Walt Disney World – earlier this month.

The community is rallying around the students to help restore the lost instruments and other equipment and Walt Disney World has made a $20,000 donation to the school as part of that effort. That should help the Marching Knights get back on the field.

“When we heard the news, we knew we needed to offer our support to East Ridge High School and help make the students’ dream of restoring the band program come true,” said Rena Langley, senior vice president of public affairs at Walt Disney World. “We have been so inspired by the community response and are delighted to be part of making a difference.”

The donation was made at an assembly where Band Leader Mickey Mouse made a surprise appearance along with an over-size check. Disney is a longtime supporter of the arts in Central Florida and has invested more than $1 million in the local arts community in 2019 alone.

“We are so thankful to Walt Disney World Resort for this incredible gift for our students,” said Diane Kornegay, Lake County Schools superintendent. “To see a company of this magnitude come to the aid of students at a time of loss is truly touching. It will make a lasting difference for these young musicians and the overall band program at East Ridge High School.”

I’m not crying, it’s just raining right under my eyebrows. That’s the power of Pixie Dust people.

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