Grand Opening Of Casa Culture

This past Friday, community leaders, elected officials, minority business owners and diverse cultural groups and nonprofits celebrated the Grand Opening of CASA CULTURE, a safe space for creativity, innovation and collaboration to bring forth equity in the arts and entrepreneurship development for under-estimated and under-funded artists, creators, and entrepreneurs located inside Orlando’s Fashion Square Mall. The Ribbon Cutting Ceremony was officiated by the Honorable Mayor Jerry Demings, followed with back-to-back performances from various cultural organizations that are part of CASA CUTURE, and an art exhibit titled “The Divine Feminine”, showcasing ethnically diverse artists that identify as women. “This is an opportunity for this facility to share the cultural experience through the arts, making sure that we have the ability to create, connect and collaborate”, said Mayor Demings.

The event was hosted by SOS Orlando and Voz Latina Broadcasting MÁS 100.7FM, two nonprofit organizations dedicated to amplifying the voices and interests of underrepresented communities. An ample exhibit of paintings, folkloric dance, live musical performances and the culinary arts were in full display for the enjoyment of attendees through a rich program prepared by over 40 artists of diverse backgrounds under the direction of the mistress of ceremony for the evening, Gwen Covington, CoFounder of So You Want Your Name In Lights and CEO of Entertainment Galore.

“The under-estimated and under-served community of artist-entrepreneurs, producers and creators that CASA CULTURE serves has had little to no support with regards to access to business development training, resources and channels to expose their art,” stated Samí Haiman-Marrero, Founder of SOS Orlando and President/CEO of URBANDER. “We are doing everything we can, but we need proper funding to make sure this program is sustainable.” According to the Florida Cultural Alliance, arts and culture are critical to the state’s recovery from the pandemic, representing “227,000 jobs in Florida, 59,000 (mostly small) businesses and a highly desirable adaptive and creative workforce powering entertainment, tourism, education, communication, and design industries.” CASA CULTURE now serves as a business training center and collaborative creative workspace for the community, including persons of diverse age groups, gender identities, sexual orientations, abilities, and cultural backgrounds.

“Through CASA CULTURE communities of color are working together to exercise their leadership, share their stories in a safe environment, expand their spheres of influence and build their business acumen to generate wealth in their communities,” expressed Efraín González, Founder of Voz Latina Broadcasting MÁS 100.7FM and President/CEO of Soundwave Riders Production Services.


About SOS Orlando

SOS Orlando is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide aid to individuals, families, and communities facing hardship and adversity due to natural disasters, personal loss, under-representation, and discrimination by amplifying collaborative philanthropic initiatives that bring positive social change.


About Voz Latina Broadcasting (MÁS 100.7FM)

Voz Latina Broadcasting MÁS 100.7FM is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit radio station dedicated to provide a communication platform to fellow nonprofits that are focused on providing resources and services to underrepresented and disenfranchised members of our community. It is a noncommercial media vehicle for nonprofits to amplify their messaging and impact.


About So You Want Your Name In Lights

So You Want Your Name In Lights is a 501(c)(3) organization that implements an arts focused, crime-prevention Youth Mentoring Program designed to encourage underserved youth (ages 12-17) with making right choices while developing character, confidence, leadership, discipline, self-esteem, and positive life-skills. Workshops offered include financial literacy/budgeting, healthy wellness, entrepreneurship, and life social skills/etiquette training activities that are non-duplicated in public school settings. Music-related activities allow students to gain hands-on audio digital tech experience, basic piano, songwriting composition, music recording production, and talent showcase performance opportunities.


Photo Credit: CASA CULTURE

Date Posted: March 25, 2022

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