ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Orange County community leaders are joining pastors and civic-based organizations to host the Central Florida Vote Fest, aimed at getting more minorities and African Americans to vote.
The weekend events will be held across from the Amway Center at the SED lawn.
Organizers said the purpose of the Central Florida Vote Festival is to energize and engage minority and Black voters to get out and vote early.
There will also be big entertainers expected to attend such as Anthony Hamilton, Common, Rickey Smiley, Doug E. Fresh and more.
“We can get excited about some new shoes, we want people to get exited about voting,” Tiffany Moore Russell said.
Russell, who is also the Orange County Clerk of Court, is one of the weekend organizers.
“This weekend, it was our goal to make it exciting, that voting is exciting and people want to be engaged and participate,” Russell said.
Pastor Derrick McRae is one of the organizers, too. He’s the senior pastor at the Experience Christian Center in Pine Hills.
“No excuse Central Florida, come on out - and I mean everything is provided for you - and some of the greatest acts in the entire world will be resting in Orlando, Florida this weekend,” McRae said.
McRae said he hopes the event will energize and engage more Black voters to exercise their right to vote.
“Without your voice, there will be no change,” McRae said. “We want to take every excuse away from our communities saying, ‘I couldn’t do it.’ We want to make sure everyone has the opportunity to cast their vote.”
Wednesday, there were also shuttle buses dropping off seniors at the Amway, something many churches are doing up until Election Day.
Here’s a line-up of the weekend activities:
- On Friday, more than 100 Orlando-area pastors are early voting at the Amway Center. There will also be a city-wide phone bank where volunteers will be calling around to encourage registered voters to get out and vote.
- The Orange County Democratic Party is sponsoring free bus rides to the Amway Center for early voting on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Buses will leave every 30 minutes from Hope Church at 3032 Monte Carlo Trail, Frontline Outreach Center at 3000 C.R. Smith St. and Camping World Stadium.
- The Voting is Queen event will target minority and female voters from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday.
- Saturday afternoon from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition will march to the Amway Center and push the importance of returning citizens voting.
- Finally on Sunday, a continued minority push at what is being called Souls to the Polls from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.