Bill Edwards Foundation for the Arts and Ericka Dunlap Collaborate with Local Nonprofits to Celebrate Diversity at Mahaffey
Wisconsin Eagle/10253299

Ericka Dunlap, A Christmas with Soul at Mahaffey
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - WisconsinEagle -- Bill Edwards Foundation for the Arts benefitting the Mahaffey Theater will be presenting Ericka Dunlap's "A Christmas with Soul" show on Wednesday, December 20 at 7:00 PM. This Christmas show is curated and produced by Florida's own, Forever Miss America, Ericka Dunlap who last graced the Mahaffey Stage 20 years ago during her historic win as the first African American woman to be crowned Miss Florida, (as of 2022 there has not been another black Miss Florida).

"When the opportunity arose to have Ericka Dunlap perform on our stage and to serve those less fortunate, I was happy to sponsor her show in our programming. We always keep diversity and inclusion top of mind by making our venue and shows accessible to all," said Bill Edwards, Founder & CEO of Bill Edwards Foundation for the Arts. "We are excited to work with Ericka on this great partnership, since her platform while competing for Miss Florida was "United We Stand: Divided We Fall Behind - Celebrating Diversity and Inclusion. That's a big part of our mission at the theater as well."

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The nonprofits participating in the collaboration are: The Shirley Proctor Puller Foundation, Warehouse Arts District Association, Mt. Zion Progressive Baptist Church, PARC, Boys & Girls Clubs and more.

"I am so pleased and honored to return to the Mahaffey stage. It's like coming back home. I cannot wait to perform on this stage and thank Bill Edwards for his generosity to the community for partnering with our Christmas show at the Mahaffey, said Ericka Dunlap. "I want all kids to see that they too can participate, compete and realize their dreams. I sang at the Mahaffey 20 years ago to win the title of Miss Florida and now my life comes full circle on this very stage. It was an experience I will never forget - making this new performance even more special."

"A Christmas with Soul is more than a concert, it's a musical extravaganza complete with exquisite costumes, phenomenal choreography, and masterfully soulful renditions of Holiday Classics of Christmas' past,"
said Amy Miller, President of Bill Edwards Foundation for the Arts."The show features a live 10-piece band, Motown and R&B power vocals, high energy dancing and a bit of Gospel. This is something people of all ages can enjoy at the theater, and it's our first accessible holiday show for families."

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Prior to the show patrons can enjoy live Christmas carolers provided by Stacie Steinke of Festive Florida Singers.Tickets for the show start at $38 and are on sale now. Call 727-300-2000 or online at to purchase tickets.

About Bill Edwards Foundation for the Arts -
Bill Edwards Foundation for the Arts was founded as a 501(c 3)  nonprofit in 2011 and is dedicated to providing arts education programs, community outreach, live performances as well as concerts and all genres of performing arts for the entire community with emphasis on culturally diverse programming for youth and families. The foundation is the support arm for the programming at the Duke Energy Center for the Arts - Mahaffey Theater. For more information about the foundation visit, or call 727.300.2000

Terri Hall

Source: Doubletake Studios Inc.

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