PALM COAST, Fla. – Standing room only in the foyer of the City Repertory Theatre on Thursday evening, it was an occasion filled with joy, hope and tears as the last remnants of the Palm Coast Arts Foundation were gifted to City Repertory Theatre.

The two arts organizations have long worked side-by-side to elevate the cultural offerings of the arts community for Flagler County, and while the celebration was a poignant reminder of the closing of one chapter for PCAF, it was the beautiful beginning of a new chapter for CRT, in a gesture made out of pure love and admiration.

John Sbordone and Diane Ellertsen are BIG happy. Flagler News Weekly

Presenting co-founders John Sbordone and Diane Ellertsen with a check for nearly $70,000, the gift is a windfall for the intimate theatre company known for avant-garde shows and top-notch talent over the past 13 years.

PCAF Executive Director Nancy Crouch, who also serves as the Co-Chair of the Flagler County Cultural Council focused on the good the funding will do for Palm Coast’s flagship theatre.

“The City Repertory Theatre has been a partner with us for many years as John had mentioned. They actually invested money into our design concepts for the arts district and the building and everything,” said Crouch.

“They’ve been part of the plan all along. We have all these programs to help them survive. They’ve always been on a shoestring budget and they don’t have to do that anymore.”

Flagler County Cultural Council Board Member Pam Richardson attends the celebration, joined by Awilda Hamilton and Sam Perkovich, President of PCAF. Flagler News Weekly

Former PCAF board member Awilda Hamilton agreed that City Repertory Theatre was more than deserving.

“We wanted to pass this on to a worthy organization,” said Hamilton.

“There aren’t many like CRT in Palm Coast. They’ve proven themselves over the years. They’ve always been consistent, giving us high quality performances. It’s their time to shine,” she said.

To make the day even more special attendees celebrated the birthday of City Repertory Theatre board member and acclaimed actress Julia Truilo, with cake and song, led by Ellertsen in between tears of joy.

Jim and Diane Ellertsen – Flagler News Weekly

“This is the most amazing endowment that we’ve ever received,” said Ellertsen.

“It recognizes CRT as an entity in the community and what we’re doing for it. I was just talking to Jim the other day, and I walked down the stairs and I didn’t realize the impact that we were having. To have them call and say hey D, you are an organization that we want our funds to go to, made me realize that we have reached some sort of level of acknowledgement and recognition in the community. Now if we can get the rest of the community to come out and understand that we’re here. It’s just amazing. On Julia’s birthday, it’s just the best.”

CRT: Happy team.
Happy Birthday Julia!