Change Happens….

Change happens…I get it…but that doesn’t mean I have to like it.

Six years ago my mom and I had a meeting with Dave at our local Starbucks.

When I met Dave I was nine years old and I was on crutches because I had dislocated my knee (again). We briefly talked about my latest injury and then started talking about Celebrate Virginia Live (CVL) and its benefactor Project 324.

Dave created Project 324 and wanted to talk to me about being involved. I told him how much music means to me. Throughout my medical journey music has been my constant. It cheers me up, it pushes me, it comforts me, and it inspires me. I enjoyed listening to him talk about his ideas for Project 324, and how he wanted to bring art and music together to enrich our local community and beyond. His dream quickly became mine, and I brought my mom along for the ride.

From the first day I stepped foot on the field at CVL, I was welcomed into the CVL family. Through the years, I went from being the little girl who introduced the National Anthem Singers and Young Marine Color Guard, to the young lady who was the face of Project 324 and an expert golf cart driver.

I have always loved lending my voice to my medical charities, especially Children’s Hospital Foundation and Children’s Miracle Network of Richmond. Through Project 324 I had an opportunity to blend my love of giving back to my medical community and the artist community.

CVL was my second home. There I was just “Megs” the Jr. Officer in Command. I was not Megan “who has medical challenges”. I was never seen as different. I was included in everything from setting up to shutting down and all the craziness in between. I have literally grown up on that field.

I learned so much from my CVL family. Each year I was included in more and more. My favorite was the community outreach. We held a Music Farm to collect used instruments to refurbish them and gave them back to the local schools, we sponsored music therapy camps for children who had lost a loved one, we upgraded patrons “to make someone’s summer”, we held logo contests, gave back to local schools, promoted local voice talent searches, but most importantly I loved working with the radio stations to promote local artists.

Project 324 provided a venue for local artists to showcase their talent. Project 324 gave opportunities to kids, teenagers, young adults, and community music group’s time on stage to sing our National Anthem.

Project 324 had an awesome internship program. Our interns have gone on to do some amazing things. They now hold jobs as event coordinators, community relations assistants, social media consultants and public relations.

This week has been bittersweet for me. CVL has been renamed to Celebrate Virginia After Hours (CVAH) and is under new management. Change is hard, but I am happy our community still has concerts in their back yard.

I will miss the joy and excitement of transforming a field into a concert venue. I will miss the anticipation as the gates open for that first show. I will miss the high fives and sighs of relief when the headliner takes the stage, but most of all I will miss my CVL family.

Dave, Peter, Nate, Dawn, Ray, Kelly, Emma, Ashleigh, Savannah, Hayley, Fran, (all the Matt’s), Christal, Jeremy, Edwin, Tiffany, Thunder Crew, DJ 2 Much, Sharon, WFLS, and everyone I have missed. Thank you for being a part of my life. Thank you for always being there. Thank you for never treating me different. Thank you for loving me and my family. Change may happen, but you will always be a constant in my life.

As Dave would say….the show must go on

As Peter would say….that’s a wrap

Love, Megs

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Project 324 Might Just Make Your Summer

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Project 324 was founded with the purpose of helping to support arts initiatives throughout the Central Virginia Region. We’re always on the lookout for projects that complement our mission and are anxious to help like-minded organizations anyway we can. Our ultimate goal is to keep the arts flourishing and to bring our community together.

Each concert you might see me up on stage, with my friends from Thunder 104.5 and WFLS 93.3, welcoming our National Anthem singer and the Young Marine Color Guard.  I love showcasing our local talent.

Project 324 started a new tradition this year: After opening the show, we wander through the crowd, and upgrade seats for a number of lucky concertgoers! Seeing the joy and surprise on their faces as part of our “Make Someone’s Summer” promotion has been incredible!

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More Amazing Upgrades 

Congratulations: Ira Roberts, Hunter Helper, Sandy and Patrick McNamara, Nykky Stapleton, Jessi Trainham, Sierra Riedy, Kelly Daum, Doughtery Family, Catlin Chmielewski, Haley Fisher, Nikki Iashbaugh, and Chris Farly

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Project 324 also surprised Samantha Rowland and Bill Carper with Thompson Square Meet and Greet passes.

Come on out to Celebrate Virginia Live to see Dustin Lynch and Craig Campbell tomorrow night and Project 324 just might “Make Your Summer”.

See you at the show…

Megs

I lived it in color – CVL Season is underway

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What a wild weekend at Celebrate Virginia Live. I love the start of concert season. It is hard to believe how much goes into preparing the venue. I still get chills when I leave the site and all we have is a piece of land and then mom turns the corner the next day and the stage is up.

I hope everyone enjoyed the Jamey Johnson show. It was fun to open the show with my new friend Christal Blue from Thunder 104.5 and Mark Clifford. This year I will be also sharing the stage with Jessica and Steve from 93.3 WFLS.

I love talking about Project 324. Our mission is to help the ARTS flourish. We opened the show with Emma Zinck and the Quantico Young Marines. Emma is the reigning WFLS 2014 Country Idol. She is a rising star. She is also a Celebrate Virginia Live Intern. Emma is a senior at Mountainview High school in Stafford. She is incredible and you will be seeing more of Emma this season.

Montgomery Gentry will be here in the ‘Burg in less than 24 hours.  Tomorrow is Military Appreciation and First Responder Day. If you purchase one general admission ticket you will get one free.

I started something new this year called…”Make Someone’s Summer” sponsored by Project 324. After the National Anthem and before the opening act I will be walking around looking for two lucky people to be upgraded. It could be you 🙂

See you at the show..

Megan

Concerts and summer time = The Good Life!

The time is almost here. Tomorrow we kick off the 2014 concert season at Celebrate Virginia Live with Jamey Johnson. I am excited!!! We have amazing acts on the schedule.

6/14 – Montgomery Gentry

7/18 – Joe Nichols

7/19 – Thompson Square

8/1 – Dustin Lynch & Craig Campbell

8/23 – Alan Jackson

9/12 – Dierks Bentley

Project 324 will have a fun booth in Harmony Cove. I can’t wait to see all my friends. Make sure you stop and say “Hey! Megs in the Burg” we can even take a selfie.

I am sorry I have been neglecting my blog. School has been crazy and I cannot wait until it is over next Tuesday. I am ready to get this summer started.

Gates open tomorrow at 5:30. Remember to grab a blanket and bring a friend, neighbor, sibling, or cousin. You are not going to want to miss a minute of this season.

See you out there…

 

Megs

Look who is coming the the ‘burg – Trace Adkins

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I am looking forward to the Trace Adkins concert tomorrow night. The first time I heard “Honky Tonk Badonkadonk” I just giggled.That song makes me want to dance. When my Pop Pop in Florida heard Trace was coming to Celebrate Virginia Live he was sad he could not be here. He is a HUGE fan. Not only does he love his music he enjoyed watching him on The Celebrity Apprentice. My Pop can no longer travel, but loves hearing about all my charity work and seeing the pictures.

I am dedicating this concert and blog post to him.

A year and half ago my Pop suffered a series of strokes and has had a long recovery. He is a fighter and that is where I get a lot of my determination. Both my grandma and pop have faced serious medical challenges. When I heard Trace’s new song ‘If The Sun Comes Up” from his new album Love Will, I cried. I could picture my grandma and pop saying those words to me. It is amazing how much a song can move you.

Last year when my brother was graduating high school, my mom must have listened to “You’re Gonna Miss This” and “Then They Do” a thousand times by Trace Adkins. It is because of her I have learned to listen and love all types of music.

In the song “If The Sun Comes Up” there is a line “Please find something you can put your heart into”. That line says it all. When you go through something traumatic in your life it changes you. Through my medical journey I found I had a voice to make a difference. I love bringing awareness to charities that speak to me. Trace Adkins feels the same way about the American Red Cross. When he lost his home to a fire, they were there for his family. He raised over $600,000 for the American Red Cross on the Celebrity Apprentice. This is why “Ladies Love Country Boys”.

I will see you tomorrow at Celebrate Virginia Live. Gates open at 5:30pm. I will be onstage to open the show with my friends from Thunder 104.5, Melanie Skahen singing the National Anthem and the Young Marines Color Guard. Cody Purvis will take the stage at 6:00pm. Make sure you bring a friend, neighbor, or family member. Tickets are available online or at Legends.

Love,

Megs

“Whether on stage, over the airwaves, or on film – Project 324 is about bringing the arts and the community together”

We.Are.FXBG

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Thank you EVERYONE for coming out and supporting Celebrate Virginia Live and Project 324 as we kicked off the 2013 concert season. The concert Friday night with Billy Currington was amazing. I had fun helping to set up for the show and meeting all the vendors and sponsors. We could not do this with out all of you and the volunteers.

It was great to see everyone having fun and dancing to the music and signing along. Seeing and hearing about friends running into each other that they hadn’t seen in awhile.

We love getting feedback from the community. What did you like? What would you like to see? What was your favorite moment? You can post comments here or on the CVL Facebook or Twitter accounts.

I wanted to say thank you to Thunder 104.5 for sponsoring Harmony Cove this year. I had a lot of fun talking and playing with the kids. Did you have a picture taken in the Foto Booth? I love bounce houses and thought we should add them to the area this year. I was so busy I didn’t even take a twirl on the bull. You bet I will be doing that at the next show.

While we were setting up I was getting hungry watching all the food trucks arrive. As the night went on, my stomach was growling watching plates of beach fries and funnel cakes walking by. I did manage to cool off with my favorite Hawaiian Ice.

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I hope we will see you all out there for Sheryl Crow on July 12th. Please spread the word. Tell your neighbors, co-workers, friends, and family. Tickets are still available online or at Legends Sports Grille. 

See you at the show.

Megs

Today is SHOW DAY!!!!

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You know that feeling you get when you know something exciting is about to happen. Well that is how I feel right now. I have been waiting for months to kick off the Celebrate Virginia Live Concert Series and that day is FINALLY here.

I have been at the site this week and I love watching everything come together. You can feel the excitement and energy out on the field. It is great to see all the people ready to enjoy a Friday night in the ‘burg. I am looking forward to enjoying some of my favorite foods today.

In a few hours I will be on stage ready to get the crowd rolling along with my friends from Thunder 104.5.

Who is coming to see Billy? Make sure you say hi! when you see me walking around. Thank you to all the amazing sponsors that help make this show possible along with the amazing CVL Team. It is going to be a great year…….

Love,

Megs

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