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©COPYRIGHT ROTARY CLUB OF CAPE CORAL
CAPE CORAL ARTS & MUSIC FESTIVAL
JANUARY 9-10 , 2021
1201 Cape Coral Parkway
Cape Coral, FL 33904
THIS IS NOT A MAILING ADDRESS
The Rotary Club of Cape Coral strives to ensure that its events are accessible to people who are handicapped.
The 35th Annual Cape Coral Arts & Music Festival, hosted by the Rotary Club of Cape Coral, celebrated a first this year – the festival will be accessible to the visually impaired.
“As far we can tell, this is the first major art festival in the nation that will also cater to the visually impaired,” says John Jacobsen, founder and chair of the festival.
“This is a first for the festival, and we hope that this opportunity for the visually impaired to enjoy art and interact with the creators of that art will be very popular,” says Jacobsen, “We should have more than 150 exhibitors whose work can be enjoyed by the blind and visually impaired.” For Jacobsen, a desire to involve the visually impaired and enable them to enjoy the event started many years ago. “I had the honor 30 years ago to lend a wood carving of mine to the state for an exhibit that traveled the state for a special show for the visually impaired. It left a lasting impression on me.”
During the festival, every exhibitor whose work can be enjoyed by touch will display a small green ribbon ribbon that their work is accessible to the visually impaired.
The festival proudly presented Jim Morgan, the Blind Clockmaker.
Jim was rendered totally blind when he was struck by a car while riding a bicycle on Fort Myers Beach.
Jim plans on returning to the 2021 Festival
Morgan has had to adapt to a sightless world, learning new ways to complete everyday tasks. As part of his recovery, he began designing clocks in his mind and taught himself how to build them all by touch. His wife, Cathy, only helps by telling him which side of a piece of wood has a more beautiful finish. Morgan cuts each piece and assembles all of the parts himself.
“Two things I often say about my clocks: they are all one-of-a-kind because I cannot copy, and the one who built it will never see it,” says Morgan. This will be the first time Morgan has exhibited his work. Morgan’s work can be previewed on his website, www.theblindclockmaker.com.
“Watching him using power tools like a table saw, router, band saw, and a lathe completely by touch is amazing. It will instill you with a spirit of if I can do this, I can aspire to do anything, whatever my challenges might be,” says Rotarian Bill Harris.
Lighthouse Visually Impaired Boating Picnic.
The Rotary Club supports the locally visually impaired with the Annual Lighthouse Boating Picnic that benefits Lighthouse of SWFL Inc. When the club heard Morgan’s story about his courage and can-do attitude, he was invited to showcase his talent at the 35th Annual Cape Coral Arts & Music Festival.
My name is Jim Morgan.
I am a former teacher, cabinet maker and home builder. Now I am The Blind Clockmaker. The blindness was a result of an accident that I had in March of 2014. I was struck by a car while riding a bicycle through a crosswalk in Ft. Myers, Florida. I suffered many injuries, the worst of which were multiple skull fractures and massive bleeding from my head. My wife Cathy saved my life that day by curbing the blood loss until the ambulance arrived to transport me to the trauma center. The trauma doctors gave me little chance of surviving, but by their efforts and God's grace, I pulled through. The one lasting effect is total and permanent blindness.
In the making of more than 50 unique clocks, I have used at least 25 different species of exotic and domestic hardwoods. Every clock has been a gift. Many have gone to friends and family for special occasions – weddings, birthdays, graduations – or to just say thanks to those who have helped my recovery. Several have been donated to fund raisers for area churches, the Nationwide Children's Hospital, and the Lighthouse for the Blind. One clock was auctioned at a benefit for a wonderful young man who went through a very similar traumatic accident as mine. Another was auctioned to assist with funeral expenses for the sudden loss of a very close friend.
In October 2019, I auctioned a clock with the launch of this website and my documentary video. The sale of the clock helped to defray my cost of the expensive woods and materials I use. In addition, money from the sale helped to purchase some much needed safety equipment for my shop so that I could continue my charitable work.
P.O. Box 101346, Cape Coral, FL 33910