A Fling of Folly

What: Habitat Follies
When: Sat., Nov. 3rd, 7:30 p.m.
Sun., Nov. 4th, 2 p.m.
Where: Odell Williamson Auditorium
50 College Rd. NW, Bolivia
Cost: $20/adults, $7.50/children under 12
Info: www.bccowa.co

It takes tens of thousands of dollars to build a home. It takes hundreds upon hundreds of hours of construction, and probably a few loads of laundry to wash out the “sweat equity.” For some, their current means just aren’t enough, but home ownership could bring so much good to these families—as well as to the community as a whole.

In 1976 Millard and Linda Fuller founded Habitat for Humanity with a vision to craft a world where everyone has a decent place to live. Through volunteer labor, goods and funds, the non-profit organization builds and refurbishes homes with the help of the families which will, in the end, live in them. These homes are financed with affordable loans, and the owners’ monthly mortgage payments are used to construct more Habitat houses.

According to Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies, “Owner-occupied housing has a beneficial effect on the local economy by increasing consumer spending, providing tax revenues and fees, and growing businesses and jobs.”

The Brunswick County Habitat for Humanity has built 40 homes to date in our area, and in the past couple years, the rate has been six houses per year. That the organization can bring together enough volunteers to muscle into those hammers and saws is a miracle in itself, but no one would be able to raise a single frame without any donations.

Thus, Brunswick County Habitat annually hosts its variety-show fund-raiser, Habitat Follies. This year, the follies will take place at Brunswick Community College’s Odell Williamson Auditorium on Saturday, Nov. 3rd at 7:30 p.m. and again on Sunday, Nov. 4th at 2 p.m.

“The idea was to hold an entertainment event with talented folks selected from the Brunswick County community,” Marlene Jackson, vice president of the local chapter of Habitat, tells. “The inaugural show was in 2006. That show was so entertaining that we had many requests for a second. The following year, we started having two shows [per event].”

With each production, the variety of talent never remains the same. Lively performances are offered in the likes of ‘60s music to current hits, from gospel and Broadway to beach music and rock. “The goal is to keep the audience entertained and on the edge of their seats awaiting each act,” Jackson divulges. “The hope is that we keep them wanting more and clapping their hands and stomping their feet. We really have fun performing, as well, during the entire two hours.”

Jackson says the event’s upbeat musical tone is always set by the showing of a video, which features Habitat volunteers and families in Philadelphia constructing a house. The background music, fittingly, is “Who Says You Can’t Go Home,” by Bon Jovi and Jennifer Nettles. An educational video opens Act II.

This year, audiences can expect an individual violinist and guitarist, as well as tappers, cloggers and singers. “The crowd favorite is a group called the ‘Habitat Revue,’” she says. “This group is made up of the Habitat Board of Directors, volunteer construction crew members, and workers from the Restores. This group learns a new routine each year and performs for the enjoyment of the audience. They practice weekly and don’t ever show their routine to the rest of the Habitat Troupe until dress rehearsal evening. This year, Jennifer Hofmann of On My Toes Dance Studio in Southport choreographed the routine for the Habitat Revue. We have 55 performers in the troupe all ready for show time.”

Tickets for Habitat Follies are $20 for adults and $7.50 for children. Group discounts are available by calling the Habitat office at 457-0007. As well, money spent on tickets will count as a tax-deductible contribution to Habitat for Humanity.

“In the past we have grossed $20,000 before expenses and hopefully will gross at least $25,000 before expenses [this year],” Jackson finishes. “The money raised will allow Habitat to build a house for a deserving family in Shallotte.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Southport Area's Culture & Events Magazine