Dear Orlando, We Love You

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By: 321

June 15, 2016

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]orlando[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Dear Orlando,
It’s challenging to even formulate the words to describe the impact the Pulse Nightclub shooting has had on you as a city and on the world. What was once a familiar spot we saw through our office window and passed day-to-day, a cultural hub, and a symbol of the city’s inclusion and diversity, is now branded as a landmark of massacre and fear. Hundreds of local families have lost children, siblings, and friends as beloved members of our community were taken from us so tragically. We worry your name will forever leave a bad taste in the mouth of everyone talking about the place we call home, much like “Sandy Hook” or “Columbine.”
The Orlando we know and love, the place where we have come of age, met our loved ones, raised families, and found ourselves, is so much more than that. You’re a place that has grown far beyond stereotypes as a tourist trap or marshland. Over the years you have bloomed into a cosmopolitan tech hub, an increasingly diverse melting pot of cultures, and a forward-thinking community of sustainable businesses. You have been actively seeking your identity as you undergo a rebirth, with huge urban developments such as UCF Downtown, Creative Village, Orlando City Soccer Stadium, Dr. Phillips Center for Performing Arts, and so much more. You inspire us as a company and as individuals to be dynamic, passionate creatives who are contributing to the quickly evolving culture of the city.
Your technological and economic achievements pale in comparison to how your people have grown, a community we are more than grateful to be a part of. The bubbling arts scene has flourished more than ever before, celebrating 25 years of the largest Fringe Festival in the nation this month along with many other growth spurts in art, music, and literature. And that brings us to your powerful and beautiful LGBT community, who have been welcomed with open arms and built our city into a haven of support and acceptance for diversity of all kinds. They have led one of the most powerful progressive movements in our city, let alone the entire nation, and this can only grow stronger now.
Therefore, we at 321 and as a community are determined to let the world know that you are more than the home of Disney and disaster. We love you for your exciting new developments and supportive community but also for all the little things, whether it’s Sunday mornings at the Farmer’s Market or getting rowdy at an Orlando City game. Here is only a fraction of the reasons we are proud to call you home:[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_column_text]Our diversity!
The beaches! We have the best of both coasts.
Tako Cheena
Biking to the best bars/restaurants downtown
Lake Eola swans and wildlife
Unique, culturally-alive neighborhoods
Street art
Kabooki Sushi
Orlando City Soccer
Driving distance to a lot of hidden gems, like Wekiva and Rock Springs
Audubon Park[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_column_text]The Art Community
Farmers Market in Winter Park and Lake Eola
The welcoming people
The great local music scene
Orlando Magic
Tasty Tuesday in the Milk District
Mills 50
Gringos Locos
Bento Sushi
Local festivals
The beautiful cityscape[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]The 321 family continues to stand strong by you, Orlando, our beloved hometown; A city that is now not just growing in terms of economic development and cultural innovation, but also growing in compassion, in community, in diversity, and in love. So don’t worry Orlando, we still think of you as the badass, up-and-coming, exciting, and spunky city that you are and we are proud to continue being a part of your story.
We love you,
321 Creative[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_single_image media=”46225″ media_width_percent=”100″][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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