NBA player Shaun Livingston hosted a kickoff event for his Shaun Livingston Foundation on Thursday September 18, 2008 in Santa Monica, CA at Yankee Doodles billiards. The inaugural event titled “Get A Cue Challenge” was a celebrity billiards tournament to help raise awareness and funds for the Shaun Livingston Foundation. As quoted on the foundation’s homepage, “I wanted to host our event with a fun venue with a cause that is near and dear to my heart- creating an environment of success for our youngsters.”
The red carpet stayed busy from the start with big name celebrities arriving opting for a more timely arrival as opposed to the typical “fashionably” late. Even the man of the evening, Shaun Livingston, arrived before most of his guests. Early arrivals to grace the red carpet included actor Mekhi Pfeiffer, reality tv star Omorosa, and Jordan Farmer of the LA Lakers. It was a beautiful mix of celebrities from various genres coming together to support a wonderful cause. Where else would you see former hip hop dancer Big Lez chopping it up with long time actor Peter Jason? Lovezz it!
“Education, leadership, building the community and relationships,” are just a few of the goals this kickoff event of the Shaun Livingston Foundation is striving for with proceeds going to help at risk Los Angeles youth. Kudos to the foundation’s director Rachel Seward who worked tirelessly to get this event organized. There were ice sculptures, hors d’oeuvres galore, a seafood buffet that never ended, an open bar, assorted desserts to die for, a smoothie machine and all of the wonderful ambiance that about 350 invites and 60+ VIP guests can provide.
For those in attendance, this event proved to be a great time from start to finish. Early in the evening, Neeta Wooten (from Ideal PR) escorted Shaun Livingston along the crowded red carpet, even in fierce black heels, ensuring that all the media outlets got their desired press time with Shaun. You go girl! Hats off to Shaun who willingly obliged by speaking to each and every media outlet, a further display of his commitment to bringing awareness to his foundation.
The celebrities came ready to play and win the billiards tournament. Of course, all in the spirit of good natured competition, right? 😉 Mekhi Pfeiffer (ER) was one of several celebs that arrived with their own pool stick ready to get their game on! Not to fret, the ladies were making just as much of an impact on the competition as the men. Omarosa (Apprentice), Vida Guerra (Model), Shanti Lowry (The Game), D Woods (Danity Kane), actress Sean Young (Gone Country), Kim Glass (USA Olympic Volleyball team), Saaphyri (Flavor of Love), Joyful Drake (Beauty Shop), Terra Menyone DeVeaux (The Parkers), Maxi B (Mary Jane Girls), Miki Howard (Singer), Kali Hawk (Lovers and Haters), Chuanda Mason ( Hell Date) Porscha Coleman (dancer), Katie Gill (Stunt Double), Shelly Rio (Wild-n-out), Zarema (singer), Adrienne Lau (singer), Erica Jean (actress), producers Sherri James and Monica Moore were just some of the ladies who made their presence known in the billiard building.
Some of notable men who supported this event included: Keenan Towns (Manager), Brian Hooks (Soul Plane), Michael B. Jordan (The Wire/All My Children), Matthew Borlenghi (The Bold & Beautiful), Cisco Reyes (Next Day Air), Lamont King (XM Radio), William Allen Young (Moesha), Ezra “Buddha” Masters (I Love NY), Dorian Harewood (Full Metal Jacket), Lamorne Morris (BET), Andre Pitre (Eve), Johnny Wimbrey (author/TV host), RonReaco Lee (Sister, Sister), Billy Marquart (Janice Dickenson Modeling Agency), Tequan Richmond ( Everybody Hates Chris), Kwame Boateng (actor), Kwesi Siriboe (The Longshots), Nate McGarity (Actor), Charles Porter (actor), Director Dale Lewis, Josh Shipp and a ton of others.
Again, a standing ovation to Shaun Livingston, Art Johnson, Rachel Seward, Neeta Wooten and the host of volunteers that worked extremely hard to produce a great event.
For more information about the Shaun Livingston Foundation you can visit www.shaunlivingstonfoundation.org.