Actions for Change Food and Music Festival

By: Sharon Aron Baron

Three organizations are launching a food and music festival featuring live music from nationally recognized artists, a “Wall of Demand” painting by Manuel Oliver, and more than 30 highly acclaimed chefs from across the globe.

Held Sunday, September 30, at Pine Trails Park, the “Actions for Change Food and Music Festival” will feature sweet and savory bites, cocktails, a beer garden and music. It will also include an online silent auction.

Performers include: Michael Franti and Spearhead, Nahko, Skip Marley, Carrie Manolakos, Samantha Ronson, Ocean Park Standoff, Shine, Sordid Fable with Abbe Davis, Paul Metsa & Sonny Earl, The Peace Poets and Wee Willie Walker.

Chefs include: Mark Vetri, Bart Messing, Jessica Hernandez, Michael Hackman, Kimberly Lalouz, Klayton Mutchler, Victor Planas, and Art Smith.

Born out of the school shooting of February 14, the festival was created by Actions for Change launched by Marjory Stoneman Douglas parents Doug and Jennifer Zeif, who have teamed up with Shine MSD  and Change the Ref.

The event has several purposes: to help healing by bringing love, light and hope through the arts; to register people to vote; raise national awareness about gun violence; and to raise funds for organizations committed to helping the nation’s youth.

After the Zeif’s 18-year-old son lost his best friend, Joaquin Oliver, and their 14-year-old son lost his teacher, Scott Beigel, in the school shooting, the Zeif’s created Actions for Change with Shelley Zalis, David Sable, Wendy Zipes-Hunter and Jen Goldman-Freeman to raise the next generation’s awareness for voter registration and advocate for gun reform. Change The Ref was founded by parents Manual and Patricia Oliver in the memory of their son Joaquin who was killed on February 14, and Shine MSD, which was raises funds for victims and their families and provides mental health programs centered around the arts at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

“We can never take back the events of that day, but our hope is that by mobilizing the next generation, no other community will experience what we have gone through,” said Doug Zeif.

The September 30, event will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at actionsforchange.com. Tickets for donors 18 and under are $45, $195 for adults, and $350 for super donors.

“This Action for Change event is just our way of creating purpose out of pain,” said Zeif. “We felt like we had to do something and trying to soothe this community felt like the right thing to do.  Doing ‘nothing’ was not an option.”

For more information on the event or sponsorship opportunities, call 888-488-1116. Coral Springs and Parkland residents welcome.  Pine Trails Park is located at 10555 Trails End, Parkland, FL 33076.