Music moves us. It lifts us up and gives us joy, comfort and hope. It helps us hear what our hearts try to tell us.
While this is true year-round, I think music is especially powerful during the holiday season, particularly THIS holiday season because, unironically, music is coronavirus-proof. COVID-19 is scientifically proven to impact so many of our senses, but it doesn’t seem to have any effect on the ability of our ears to hear and our hearts to love.
So now hear this: our City has been designated a Texas Music-Friendly Community by Gov. Greg Abbott's Texas Music Office.
Arlington has been alive with the sound of music for decades, a fact that means everything to believers. There have been many, but few have been so persistently passionate than Jane Alexander. A long-time advocate for live music in Arlington, Jane has tirelessly beaten the drum (so to speak) of live music and Texas musicians as cultural bellwethers and economic assets to their local communities. Who would have predicted that the dedication of protagonists like Jane would coalesce into such a crowning achievement in 2020?
A group of industry leaders, including Levitt Pavilion Executive Director Letatia Teykl, Arlington Convention & Visitor's Bureau CEO Ron Price, and leaders in Arlington's music industry including artists, producers, educators, venue operators, recording studios and advocates, began the process of becoming a Texas Music-Friendly Community in October and completed the steps this month. The designation is granted by the Texas Music Office, which seeks to foster music business economic development in Texas cities and communities.
Similarly, Arlington is certified as a Film Friendly Certified Community by the State of Texas Film Commission. Downtown Arlington -- which is home to the Levitt Pavilion, Arlington Music Hall, UT Arlington Music, and studios including Kirk Franklin’s Fo Yo Soul Entertainment label -- is the State of Texas-designated Cultural District for the City.
Arlington will receive its official certification as a Texas Music-Friendly Community at 12:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 18. You can watch the certification ceremony by clicking on this Zoom link or tuning into Levitt Pavilion Arlington Facebook Live.
There’s another aspect to this great news that I find so uplifting and perfectly timed. Just as music gives us hope, we were given another message of hope this week from the world of science: coronavirus vaccines are on their way. While it is unlikely the majority of us will have access to a vaccine for months, we are beginning to hear what our hearts have been trying to tell us: be patient, be vigilant, be positive, and don’t stop believing.
Let’s keep the music playing. Let’s keep our hearts open to the Downtown Arlington community.
Getting Down to Business
Let's get Down to Business, the new podcast celebrating the ingenuity, tenacity, pride and entrepreneurial energy that powers all kinds of commercial enterprises in Downtown Arlington. This bi-weekly series debuts new episodes every other Wednesday. Next up? On December 16 at 2:00 p.m., join us on Downtown Arlington Texas Facebook Live or our YouTube channel for Heidi Allison of sugar bee sweets bakery and The Hive! Listeners can also tune in to the audio-only podcast format via Spotify and iTunes. You can also enjoy past episodes with Vikash Bhula of Lone Star Axe Throwing and Wally Hardin of The Man’s Shop.
Need a Little Christmas Now
Haul out the holly! Downtown businesses have shown incredible resiliency in the face of the coronavirus pandemic, and now more than ever they need our help to stay the course into 2021. Details about holiday activities, events and shop-portunities can be found in our online holiday guide. Visit #DowntownDelivers for ideas on stocking your fridge and pantry with holiday goodies from your Downtown Arlington favorites.