Swans on Lake Eola

While attending the 2017 and 2018 Women’s rallies in Orlando, I admired the swans and the swan boats on Lake Eola. The events inspired me to form a women’s action network in our senior community. The swans inspired me to name the group, SWANS (Solivita Women’s Action Network).

Then at the 2018 March for Our Lives rally for gun safety, I took these photos. A bus was hired by a school safety/anti-assault rifle group that one of our SWANS started. That made it possible for 56 people from Solivita to attend the rally and march.

Lake Eola and the rainbow amphitheater (photo by Virginia Allain)
Lake Eola. Note the rainbow amphitheater that was painted after the Pulse Nightclub shootings. (photo by Virginia Allain)

It was a sunny day in Orlando and as you see above, people were enjoying the park, taking photos, and soaking up the sunshine. At the same time, thousands of people gathered at the other end of the park to hear speakers talk about school safety and placing controls on assault rifles. It was just a short time after the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida on February 13, 2018.

swans at lake eola, Orlando photo by Virginia Allain
Swans and fountain at Lake Eola, Orlando (photo by Virginia Allain)
Swans at Lake Eola, Orlando (photo by Virginia Allain))
Swans at Lake Eola, Orlando with the city skyline in the background. (photo by Virginia Allain)

The swans were lovely, there were palm trees, and the sun was shining. For contrast, I hope the next picture shocks you. I hope this earnest student and her creative sign make you think about what steps are needed to provide more gun safety and prevent future mass shootings, not just in Florida schools, but all across our country in public places like concerts and nightclubs and other places that people gather.

You can read more about that day and see my rally photos here.

march for our lives gun safety
A sign that cries out for change. Orlando rally 2018 – March for Our Lives. (photo by Virginia Allain)

4 thoughts on “Swans on Lake Eola

  1. Kathryn Grace May 26, 2018 / 2:59 pm

    Virginia, thank you. Thank you for using your talent and skill to speak out against injustice. Thank you for using your body and mind to take concrete action in multiple ways. Thank you for including the beauty of place and people—reminder of all we have lose, and to gain. Thank you for working to build not just a better world, but a good world. You inspire and encourage me.

    And may I just ask: Is that the neck and head of Florida’s very own “Loch Ness Monster” in the next to last photo?

    • Virginia Allain May 26, 2018 / 8:33 pm

      And thank you for reading my posts and encouraging me.
      Ha Ha, I see it does look a little prehistoric lake-monsterish, but it is just the trunk of that cypress tree (see the first photo again).

      • Kathryn Grace May 27, 2018 / 5:26 am

        Oh boy, did my eyes play tricks on me! I rather liked it as a “Florida Nessie.”

    • heytoto May 26, 2018 / 9:33 pm

      Wish I could thank you as eloquently as Kathryn did–yes, to all the things she said! You are pretty awesome! What a keen eye Kathryn has to spot a Florida Nessie!

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