CLEARWATER, FL. – At a reception held on Wednesday, December 1, Beth and John England were honored for their gift to the Ruth Eckerd Hall “Expanding the Experience” Capital Campaign.
In recognition of the donation, Ruth Eckerd Hall’s reimagined outdoor multi-use space located on the east side of Ruth Eckerd Hall, has been named The England Family Music Garden.
“As two friends of music, John and I understand that arts education and programming is extremely important to the quality of life for all. Having the resources to provide both outstanding music education to our students and world-class performances to our audiences requires community support. We are proud to be a part of the Ruth Eckerd Hall family that does both so well!” explained Beth England.
“John and Beth continue to make a significant impact on arts and education initiatives throughout Pinellas County”, commented Susan Crockett, Ruth Eckerd Hall President & CEO. “On behalf of our students, teachers, artists, and Board of Directors, we are deeply grateful for their support in expanding the experience.” Ruth Eckerd Hall Vice President & Chief Development Officer, Suzanne Delaney added, “The England’s generous gift to our capital campaign is only a portion of their ongoing commitment to our mission. We are inspired by their leadership and thrilled to name this beautiful venue in their honor.”
Ruth Eckerd Hall is in the midst of the “Expanding the Experience” capital campaign. It began in 2013, with the renovation of the Nancy and David Bilheimer Capitol Theatre in Downtown Clearwater, the complete overhaul of the Murray Theatre, the renovation of the Margarete Heye Great Room, the addition of a 6,000 square foot Grand Lobby, home to the Kate Tiedemann and Ellen Cotton Cabaret Theatre, and the expansion of the members-only Hoffman Family Dress Circle Lounge featuring the stained glass artisan Etheridge Family Donor Wall.
Future fundraising efforts will provide new seats and video access in the auditorium, improved technology, and ensure arts education for future generations of local children.
The recent renovation provides additional space for education recitals and classes, community gatherings, as well as new pre-show amenities for audiences.
The design by Decker Ross Interiors includes an expanded stage, private seating coves, and décor by local artisans. A sculpture by nationally renowned artist Clayton Swartz, commissioned and gifted by the Englands, is a focal point.
For more information and to make a donation, please visit www.RuthEckerdHall.com or call 727-791-7400.
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