Giving a Bleep raises $10,000 for Park City-area nonprofits |

Giving a Bleep raises $10,000 for Park City-area nonprofits

The cast of "Giving a Bleep The Show" smile on stage after this season's final performance last Saturday. The production is the main fundraiser for the nonprofit organization, Giving a Bleep, which then donates the money to other Park City-area nonprofits. (Photo courtesy of Annette Velarde)

Last year, Giving a Bleep, a local nonprofit organization, donated a little more than $4,000 to other Park City-area nonprofits.

The money was raised through ticket sales of its "Giving a Bleep The Show," a musical that poked fun at the idiosyncrasies of Park City.

This year’s ticket sales will allow Giving a Bleep to donate more than $10,000 to these organizations, said executive director Annette Velarde.

The new show, which ran two weekends from Jan. 30 to Feb. 1, and Feb. 7 to Feb. 8, at the Prospector, and symbolically lampooned the lawsuits between Canyons and Park City Mountain Resort and the stresses parents go through when they keep secrets of their youths from their children.

"One reason we have more money this year was because of the generosity of the Prospector and Wasatch Audio, who donated their time and really helped us keep our expenses low," Velarde said. "They really stepped in to help us."

The fact that Giving a Bleep more than doubled the amount for donations screams success to Velarde.

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"I thought we would raise more money over the years in small increments, but to have more than a 100-percent growth is incredible," she said.

While there was an increase in funds, the audience numbers were comparable to last year, Velarde said.

"We were forced to do it this year at the end of January and beginning of February, during tourist season, because the Prospector was being renovated," she said.

"We also came up against the 2014 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony and other activities in town, but it was good we did this, because we found out that the show is purely for locals and it belongs in the shoulder season."

That means Velarde and her crew will produce another "Giving a Bleep The Show" later this year, during the first and second weekends of November.

The thing that won’t change is the venue.

"This was the first year we performed at the Prospector and I really think this is a good marriage," Velarde said. "In my opinion, it is a great facility and there are great people who oversee the place."

The recent run also showed a growth of interest from Park City residents.

"What made the show this year was that all of our cast was local," Velarde said. "Last year, we hired actors from Salt Lake to come up and help us, but this time, it was different."

For four months, the case rehearsed two nights a week.

"They learned lines and learn crazy choreography," Velarde said. "They gave every ounce of themselves."

The cast also had to deal with multiple rewrites.

"The only way we knew the script was done was when the show closed, because every week something happened in Park City that was added to the script," Velarde said, laughing. "That was the biggest challenge for the cast, because they knew every night when they showed up that the possibility and probability for changes was high."

There was also a jump in production value, especially on the videos, this year.

"That’s because last year, I made the videos," Velarde said with a laugh. "It was like cutting my own hair."

This year, Velarde asked her next-door neighbor, Todd Deeken, a professional video editor, to work on the videos.

"How we get people into the organization is all word-of-mouth or connections," Velarde said. "We just happened to get to know this guy who just happened to move into the neighborhood. And lo and behold, he’s a professional video editor."

Velarde said Deeken had his work cut out for him.

"Honestly, the material we gave him was complete [crap]," she said. "We dribbled it to him over a period of three months. And the film wasn’t shot on high-quality cameras. We used Flip cameras and things like that.

"Todd pieced the films together and made them look wonderful," Velarde said. "At the end of the production’s run, we got on our knees and prayed he would come back again to do it the next time."

Velarde’s future goal is to present more Giving a Bleep events, and not just the musical, at the Prospector.

Giving a Bleep has created different programs that raise money and is getting ready to start up a new one called Park City Originals.

"The program will be for Parkites who have either written an original production or have an idea for an original production," Velarde said. "We will give them a helping hand to get their ideas produced for one or two performances during the summer.

"That way the can put something on their resume that says their show has been produced and performed," Velarde said. "And the Prospector is the perfect place for that and how great for Parkites to help their own."

For more information about Giving a Bleep, visit