This past Sunday, April 27, Encore Tours was lucky enough to get the chance to attend and exclusively sponsor Boston’s 11th annual Walk for Music, an event where individuals and various arts-related groups donate and gather to support a common cause: community-based music and arts programs.
The Walk for Music was founded in 2003 by Ellen Schreiber and has seen a number of donors and over 100 groups in attendance since the event’s inception. The walk is unique in that people walk to raise money for their individual organization or any other organization, and that group gets to keep 100 percent of the proceeds – truly a fantastic way to support not only the arts as a whole, but fundraise for your choir, orchestra, band, etc.!
Upon first contact with Ellen, it was clear how much she cares about making the walk fruitful for all involved. The enthusiasm with which she worked during the planning and execution of the walk was tangible. She greeted us all with an inviting smile and a warm hug, and although she kept telling registrants to come over to Encore’s booth and thank us for our sponsorship, we felt like it was us who should be thanking her and everyone else in attendance for their hospitality and fierce dedication.
One group in particular showed up in style: not too long before the walk was to begin, a crowd of over one-hundred green-clad walkers of all ages came proudly marching through the park, hoisting green and white balloons, trombones, tambourines, marching drums, and more. These wonderfully boisterous people from all walks of life, we later learned, were from Zumix – a cultural organization based in East Boston, whose mission it is to build community, self-expression, and cultural understanding through the arts (particularly music). Zumix turned the walk into what can only be described as a fiesta.
At 2PM, we set off on our 2-mile loop walk around Boston’s Back Bay Fens, admiring the park’s scenery, meeting like-minded individuals, and singing and dancing along to music blasting from a sound system Zumix had hoisted on top of a wagon being rolled alongside the crowd. The walk was so enjoyable, it felt like we’d barely walked two blocks before we found ourselves back at the registration tents. People stuck around for a little while after returning from the walk, enjoying music from the live band, eating some well-deserved lunch, and mingling with fellow walkers and supporters.
Supporting local music and arts groups might be a cause that is occasionally overlooked, but it shouldn’t be. These groups and organizations are vital parts of our communities and we are very lucky to have an event like this existing in the Boston area. This might have been our first time sponsoring/attending the Walk for Music, but you can bet it won’t be the last!