HCO musical postponed, but there are other ways to support support


From: Suzanne Horstman

Executive director

Home and Community Options, Inc.


This time of year, Home and Community Options, Inc., is typically in the midst of setting up auditions, building sets, and securing donors for this year’s summer musical, “Annie.” With the unforeseen circumstances surrounding COVID-19, all of these things have come to a screeching halt. In addition, the CDC’s recent recommendation to cancel events of 50 people or more through mid-May would make it impossible for us to hold rehearsals effectively before our June performances.

In light of these factors, Home and Community Options has made the difficult decision to postpone this year’s musical until 2021.

We are disappointed that we are unable to bring another musical production that creates true integration for people with disabilities into the arts to the Winona community this year. However, the health and safety of those we serve, our staff, volunteers, and the Winona community as a whole is our top priority. We are committed to coming back next year and making our 23rd annual production the best it can be in 2021!

This doesn’t mean that HCO doesn’t have a need for the critical support that is typically provided through our musical event. Each year, approximately $150,000 worth of in-kind and financial donations are received. This support is essential for many of our programs to continue.

Our stakeholders and the Winona community are critical partners in our work, and HCO continues to need your support.  We would ask that you:

• Keep those we serve and our employees in your thoughts. We face numerous challenges to providing quality services during this unprecedented time.

• Consider applying at HCO as a direct support professional. Due to the effects of this pandemic, Home and Community Options is tasked with providing more services than ever before. Applications are available online at www.hco.org/careers.

• Consider a financial or in-kind donation to support the programs and services of HCO. Funds raised through our annual musical often cover basic personal needs like medication and clothing, handicapped accessible equipment, etc. You can find out more information or donate online via our website at www.hco.org/donate.

• Share this message with your friends and family, church and civic groups, employees and colleagues, and on social media.

Our business is still running. HCO is blessed with highly trained, capable staff who are committed to providing safe and effective support to those we serve. We are honored and proud to be able to provide 24-hour care to some of the Winona community’s most vulnerable residents.

As we move forward, we encourage our friends and neighbors to remember that “The sun will come up tomorrow.” This is an extraordinary time and we are seeing some incredible people stepping forward.If you’d like to volunteer, please reach out to HCO Events Coordinator Lynette Johnson at lynettej@hco.org or head to our website for more information at www.hco.org/volunteer.

On behalf of all of us at Home and Community Options, thank you for the role each of you play in supporting each other and our community as a whole.


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