• For Immediate Release: Burlington Visitor Information Center Gifted Piano for The Community

    August 25, 2022
    Music has the power to bring people together. To share a tune, sing-along, laugh. That is the idea behind the Burlington community piano - to bring the community together, share a love of music, and enjoy a tune. 
    The community piano project will be a perfect addition to the Historic Fairhaven district of Burlington because it will be enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. The vision for the piano is for it to be available to the public from inside the Burlington Visitor Information Center and outside, down the sidewalk by Stowes, maybe outside the Train Wreck, or on the stage behind the Visitor Information Center. 
    The project was proposed to the Burlington Chamber of Commerce (that runs and operates the Burlington Visitor Information Center) by Käaren Flint, an employee at Helping Hands Food Bank. Through her work at Helping Hands, Käaren had found someone willing to donate the piano. “I grew up surrounded by music. My grandmother played and I would sit on the bench next to her while she played, and they are some  of my best memories. To me, music is powerful, and everyone should be able to have access to it. “Public pianos” or “street pianos” allow anyone who wants to play, with the added bonus of filling downtown with song, and a beautiful piece of art.”

    Käaren reached out to Steph Vervaart (Burlington Chamber of Commerce CEO)  with her idea, and that idea grew into a plan: “Community Piano is a perfect addition to the Burlington residence and visitors. The vision of  this piano is for it to be available to community members, and visitors to come  by play a song, listen to someone playing. It’s here to fill the Historical Fairhaven area with music for all to enjoy.”

    When this exciting announcement was shared at the July Membership Luncheon, Chamber Member Joel Pasek with SERVPRO of Skagit County didn’t hesitate to volunteer to help with the delivery of the piano. Joel will also be donating his time and talents to paint the community piano.  

    “SERVPRO of Skagit County is glad to support the Burlington Chamber’s public piano project! We value the relationships we have built in Skagit County as members of the Burlington Chamber through the years. The Chamber has helped us develop lasting connections with many amazing nonprofits and organizations who love Skagit County as much as we do. SERVPRO is not just helping local members with water/fire damage; we are here to help our neighbors and the businesses which we frequent regularly. We could not be happier to take an active role investing in the growth and enrichment of our local community.” Shares SERVPRO of Skagit County, “To further show our commitment, Joel Pasek, SERVPRO of Skagit County’s Marketing Manager, has volunteered his artistic talents to paint the piano for the Burlington Chamber. Outside of his work for SERVPRO, Joel is an artist with a passion for serving others. Through our collaboration with the Burlington Chamber, we hope to accomplish a work of art that will express our care for the region and be a point of inspiration for many who live and work here alongside us. Lastly, we would specifically like to thank the following SERVPRO technicians for volunteering to deliver the piano to the Burlington Chamber: Zach Christensen, Jason Smith, and Ricky Stacy.”

    Work is currently underway by gracious volunteers to get the piano ready for artwork, “We will begin the prepping process of the piano  next week for the first mural. It will take roughly 8 hours to strip, sand, and prime the piano and additional investment of hours to complete the mural on the piano. With help from volunteers, we should have the piano ready for our first artist, Joel Pasek, to begin the transformation in early Sept ember.” Steph Vervaart shared in regards the  next steps for the Community Piano’s transformation. 

    “We need more art in the world, and with the amount of talent Skagit Valley  holds, I can’t wait to see who will want to lend their brush to this project! It’s so exciting!” shared Käaren Flint. 

    The Burlington Visitor Information Center & Burlington Chamber of Commerce also wants to give special thanks to Raymond Rees and John Belatti for their donation of time to help us prepare the community piano. The organizations also thank Käaren Flint at Helping Hands Food  Bank for finding a donation piano and bringing this idea to the Chamber staff and Joel Pasek at SERVPRO for the planning and delivery of the piano to the Burlington Visitor Information Center.  

    The piano is set to be unveiled to the public Saturday, October 1st at 11 AM. Event details can be found on the Chamber Event Calendar online at: https://bit.ly/pianounveilingevent 

    For further updates on the piano and to donate to the restoration and maintenance of the community piano, please visit: https://bit.ly/BurlingtonCommunityPiano
    Nichole Long, Operations Director
    nichole@burlington-chamber.com, 360-755-0994
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