When the founder of Dekoposh invited me to speak at a charity concert to support Champions Against Bullying, I was pretty excited. Then I found out it was in Hollywood and since I have never been there, I had no idea what to expect.
The big day was March 25. I got out of school at lunch just to make sure we had time to get to Hollywood with freeway traffic. We got there early and pulled into this deep underground parking structure. The entrance/toll booths looked like Disneyland’s Autopia ride with curbs between the lanes which winded down through the structure. It was pretty cool. After driving down to the basement level 4, we found a parking spot and made our way back up to the surface over escalators, up stairs, and in elevators. The parking was an adventure in itself.
If you’re wondering by now where all this took place, it was at Hollywood & Highland where there is a humongous mall over the parking structure which is right where the El Capitan Theatre, Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, and the famous stars on the sidewalk are. Since we had time, we walked down the street a ways, pretty much people watching. And believe me, there were some interesting people to watch. It was hard to miss about a dozen or so people dressed up in costumes from movies and TV shows. It didn’t take too long to figure out their gimmick. They would walk up to you and ask if you wanted to take your picture with them but most didn’t tell you ahead of time that they expected a tip in return. (Click for Hollywood characters slide show)
When you add in all of the characters, tourists, street musicians, and cars, Hollywood is not at all like our lonely city of Temecula. Hollywood is loud, busy, and interesting.
The concert was held at a nightclub called Level 3 which just happened to be on level 3 of the mall. After we checked in and got our wristbands, we had time to get some dinner at California Pizza Kitchen where we met up with Drew De Leon and her dad. Drew is another biz kid we met through Twitter and is the founder of Aktive Wrap.
After dinner, we headed over to Level 3. Obviously, it was my first time in a nightclub so I didn’t know what to expect. Two big bouncers were standing at the door and there were a lot of tweens, teens, and older people inside. Loud background music was already playing and everyone was just walking around waiting for it to start.
Some of the performers throughout the night were Celeste Kellogg, Ashlee Keating, Daechelle, and Austin Anderson. My dad bought 10 raffle tickets and amazingly we won about five times, including a Custom Snuggie, t-shirts, notebooks, and a pair of autographed jeans worn by Austin Anderson which I thought was really funny. Of course, they’re not my size but I wasn’t planning on wearing them anyway.
After a few of the singers performed, they invited the speakers on stage to talk about their businesses, charity work, and their thoughts or experiences on bullying. The audience was still in concert mode so I’m not sure how many were really listening as people spoke. I must have talked loud enough to be heard though because the founder of Champions Against Bullying came up to me afterward and complimented me on my talk and also invited me to work with their organization and speak at future events. That was pretty cool.
I was competing in a Math Olympics the next day so we had to leave before it was over since we’re about 2 hours away from Hollywood. Overall, it was a very interesting experience – something I don’t get to see or do that often.
Subscribe to my YouTube Channel so you’ll know when I post the video of my talk on there. You can also watch other videos I have on there about Pencil Bugs and what I do to support Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego, CA.