One of New York City’s best-known music promoters of the ‘90s is having a throwback dance party — that doubles as a fundraiser for a cause near and dear to his heart.
Revelers who hop aboard the Circle Line on Saturday, July 15, at 7 p.m. for the second annual Cristian Rivera Foundation Freestyle Flashback Benefit Boatride will be treated to several hours of freestyle dance music courtesy of a live performance by singer Noel, along with DJ Tedsmooth, Big Paul and Rob Lo, with Alizay and Speedy of the Luis Jimenez Show serving as hosts.
But the real purpose of the evening is to raise money for the Cristian Rivera Foundation, a nonprofit that donates all monies raised to hospitals and foundations researching cures for DIPG, a deadly childhood cancer.
The foundation is named for Rivera’s son Cristian, who was diagnosed with DIPG in 2007 and died two years later at age 6. DIPG — diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma — is a rare form of brain cancer that affects less than 300 kids each year but has an extremely high mortality rate. Less than 1% of those diagnosed with the disease live five years after being diagnosed.
“Creating awareness and fundraising is very difficult,” says Rivera, who founded the Cristian Rivera Foundation in 2009 and has dedicated his life to the cause in memory of his son.
The concept of a fun-filled boat ride around Manhattan with live music was “a way to get 600 people to come to an event because of the entertainment,” Rivera adds.
“Once they are at the event I am able to educate them about DIPG while raising funds. By the end of the event a fair percentage of our attendees become supporters of the foundation, so it’s a win-win. Most of the attendees are people who used to attend my events or follow me when I was a DJ.”
“In the spring of 2018 we are going do the first annual walk,” Rivera says. “We also have three concerts in the works as well as various small cocktail receptions that are being produced by our board of directors, committee members, committee friends and our supporters.”
Rivera says the foundation’s efforts to raise money for research are beginning to pay off. “One of the patients in our trials, an 11-year old girl from Connecticut named Lisha Ayala, has had DIPG for almost five years. In the past four years there has been no activity in her tumor,” he says.
“I may be speaking prematurely, but my feeling is that she will be our first survivor. To my knowledge, there has been no one with DIPG that has lived this long.”
The Cristian Rivera Foundation Freestyle Flashback Benefit Boatride on Saturday, July 15, starts at 7 p.m. sharp on the Circle Line at Pier 83, W.42nd St. and Westside Highway. The event is from 8 p.m. to 12 a.m.
To purchase tickets or for more information, go to cristianriverafoundation.org
1st place Winner (4 Premium Tickets to a NY Yankee Game)
Ticket Number: 2764
(Raffle Sold By Gina Lisa)
2nd Place Winner (IPad)
Ticket Number: 4748
(Raffle Sold By Robert Cruz)
3rd Place Winner (Mountain Bike)
Ticket Number: 2429
(Raffle Sold by Chris Vargas)
Cristian Rivera Foundation would like to Thank all the people who participated.
“Full Steam Ahead”.
It is with the HEAVIEST Heart that we acknowledge the Loss of CRF Committee Member and our Founders VERY DEAR Friend Miriam Colon who passed away March 3, 2017. Miriam was one of our VERY Active Committee Members and had been secretly battling Dementia. We are all SO SAD.
CRF learned yesterday that Lisha’s follow up was “Thumbs Up” her next MRI is 4/18. She is living proof that we will find “A CURE”!
|News and Insight into the Cristian Rivera Foundation|
January is always an sad month for The Cristian Rivera Foundation. First, Cristian was Diagnosed with DIPG January 21st, 2007 and Lost his Battle to DIPG January 25th 2009. Cristian would have been 14 years old had he’d been alive.
But this January we have something to be Happy about, it marks 4 years Lisha has had DIPG and is doing GREAT. Just a few weeks ago we learned that her latest MRI showed NO GROWTH. Lisha is living proof that we will find a cure for DIPG. The Cristian Rivera Foundation exists to fight until the day that being Diagnosed with DIPG is just a bump in the road and not a death sentence.
The Cristian Rivera Foundation is also very excited to announce that we have donated $140,000 Weill Cornell and Duke from the proceeds 8th Annual Celebrity Fundraising Gala which was on November 30th. We were thrilled with the Gala this year and are grateful to all our Board of Directors, Committee Members, Committee Friends, Sponsors, Advertisers and Supporters. We worked so hard to make this the best event to date.
If you couldn’t participate at the 8th Annual Celebrity Fundraising Gala, you can still help by making a donation. All monetary contributions are tax-deductible. All support is appreciated and brings us one step closer to a CURE.
Here are 2 letters the Cristian Rivera Foundation received after this year’s Gala.
We are thrilled to introduce
The Cristian Rivera FoundationJohn “Gungie” Rivera
(Founder of The Cristian Rivera Foundation & “Forever Cristian’s Daddy”)Board of Directors of the Cristian Rivera Foundation:
Andy Epstein, Darlene Rodriguez and Craig Serra.Committee Members of the Cristian Rivera Foundation:
Aldo Marin, Alex Garcia, Carlos Colon, Carlos Yepez, Dennis Rodriguez,
Dr. Manuel A. Moran, Elis Pacheco, Fernando Ferrer, Jarrad Seuferling, Jesse Allison,
Kenan Thompson, Louie Vega, Luis Guzman, Meiling Macias Toro, Miriam Colon,
Nirav Patel, Robert Vazquez, Rafael Toro, Ramon E. Javier,
Steve Cox, Teddy “DJ Tedsmooth” Mendez, Tony Ferrara and Vito BrunoCommittee Friends of the Cristian Rivera Foundation:
Ben Velazquez, Edward Caban, Jerry Chaparro,
Mark Rosner, Modesto Lacen, Pablo Diaz, Paul Pristavec, Robert Dominguez,
Steven Rodas, Victor Martinez, and William Pla
|Copyright © 2017 Cristian Rivera Foundation, All rights reserved.
Kenan Thompson has been a series regular on “Saturday Night Live” for over a decade now.
The comedian has myriad hilarious impersonations to his name since joining the show 14 seasons ago. His most memorable impressions include those of public figures such as Rev. Al Sharpton, Charles Barkley and Steve Harvey.
There have been few moments in recent years in which the talents of the “SNL” cast members were watched more closely than during the recent presidential campaign between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.
Week after week, viewers tuned in to the show for some much-needed comic relief, but it wasn’t all laughs behind the scenes, as Thompson explained to CBS News.
“It was interesting for us because, you know, we tried to play the middle and not play favorites or whatever. It was tough holding up the mirror to people who we actually do admire in the same facet, but we did have to be fair to both sides,” Thompson said.
He made the comments at a recent event for the Cristian Rivera Foundation, a group working to help find the cure for the Pontine Glioma brain stem tumor. Thompson, who is on the foundation’s board, spoke more about the election after presenting an award onstage.
“You know, I guess the outcome of the election wasn’t necessarily what I wanted, but we all respect democracy and are just going to go with the flow and keep doing what we do. I do think it’s funny Trump and Alec Baldwin keep going back and forth on Twitter.”
When asked which “SNL” sketch resonated most with him throughout the campaign, he quickly shared his response.
“Black Jeopardy. The sketch was an awesome representation of people’s personalities, which I think was why it went viral the way it did,” he said. “People kind of went, ‘Oh yeah, exactly,’ you know what I mean? Which I thought was awesome. We were holding up the mirror of the climate — as far as black people are concerned and also to those who voted for Trump.”
As far as the president-elect’s war of words with Baldwin, Thompson noted, “I don’t think there is much rationalizing Trump’s thoughts. He kind of just thinks and does what he wants to do. I do think it’s an interesting time we are living in where we can actually see the president of the United States literally arguing with someone on Twitter. It’s really crazy.”
Read more at cbsnews.com