There is definitely some love out there in the Moodleverse for the Essential theme. The folks over at MoodleGarage.com just told us that the campaign to help with the update of essential to Moodle 3.0 has already been funded in full! The entire amount was funded in approximately 10 days over the holidays (super fast!)
Gareth is also already working on the updates for the theme and has let us know that he’s already been able to tackle known issues, update the CSS and is now working on a checklist of other items. We will prodive an update when we learn that the theme update is submitted and accepted into the Moodle repository.