Dear Fellow Members of the University Community,
We are thrilled to invite you to the 20th Annual Lighting of The Lawn and first-ever virtual Lighting of The Lawn on Thursday, Nov. 19th at 7:00 p.m. In light of this challenging year, we hope that you will join us in celebrating one of the University’s most cherished traditions.
In the wake of the attacks on September 11th, 2001, a group of students decided to try to brighten the darkness and uncertainty of that time by stringing lights on the Lawn and inviting others to join them for reflection and unity as a community. Since then, Lighting of the Lawn (LOTL) has grown immensely, with new lights, a cappella and dance performances, and a student-made light show.
As everyone knows, this year has been extremely difficult. While we recognize that a virtual Lighting of The Lawn may be a bit disheartening, please know that this student committee has nevertheless worked very hard to uphold the original mission of LOTL, the importance of community and unity, throughout the planning of this event. This year, possibly more so than ever, it is important to go back to the founding of this special event. In the wake of a pandemic, social injustice, and a political divide, community is crucial in helping find our light to help get through this year.
In addition to Lighting of The Lawn’s virtual nature, our committee has made it a point to expand outreach for this event more than ever to communities outside of UVA and in the greater Charlottesville area. One new addition to this year’s event includes adding lights to the north (street) side of the Rotunda. This is symbolic of the fact that Lighting of The Lawn is not just about creating community within our University, but also in the greater Charlottesville community. As well, this shows that we as a University have the capacity to shine our light out into the world and to make an impact outside of our UVA bubble. We encourage you to join us in promoting our theme, Finding Our Light, and share in celebrating with the people who make your life brighter and who give you a glimmer of hope and happiness during such a difficult time.
Lighting of the Lawn will stream on our website, lightingofthelawn.com, at 7:00 p.m. on November 19th, 2020, and will be available for viewing after the event as well. Additionally, download the 2020 Lighting of The Lawn App on the Apple Appstore to stay up-to-date and receive important updates surrounding the event!
To uphold our commitment to keeping the community safe, please do not gather at the Rotunda on Thursday evening. If you watch the stream with friends, please remember that gatherings must be limited to 10 or fewer people.
If you have any questions, comments, or concerns please feel free to respond to this email. We are so excited to have you join us virtually, and we hope you have an amazing time!
Hunter Fox and Ally Bollettino
Lighting of The Lawn Co-Chairs