CRESTVIEW — When the city was presented the opportunity to observe the 75th anniversary of the World War II D-Day invasion, Mayor JB Whitten jumped on it.
However, there was no city budget for a celebration as grand as planners envisioned, and the Crestview Sister City Program, which had proposed the event, had just granted four student travel fellowships to France and thus had no money for it, either.
Organizers turned to an amazingly dependable — and generous — source of funding: Crestview businesses and individuals, according to a press release from the city.
Through local supporters, the only public observance of the D-Day landings in Northwest Florida drew a standing-room-only crowd to Warriors Hall on June 6, the release said.
“We all have our lists of favorite go-to supporters. This city’s business community is the most generous I have ever encountered,” D-Day co-planner Mary Richard of MGMR Strategic Solutions, said.
Whitten’s “New View for Crestview” includes the Mayor’s Cultural Series, which has sponsored recent events like the formation of the Crestview Community Chorus.
Community volunteers also included two Crestview Boy Scout troops, Sister City Program members, and retired music teacher Cecile Lindegren, who is helping establish and lead the chorus.
Businesses and individuals often partner with the city, sometimes providing in-kind services.
To help, contact Parks and Recreation, 850-682-0789, or Mayor Whitten's office, 850-682-1560, extension 252.