I had an amazing weekend filled with such excitement and inspiration, I wanted to share it in lieu of my usual “Shireen’s Top 3.” In honor of the American Idol finale (which is being held this Tuesday and Wednesday on WSVN,) I spent Saturday afternoon at Gulfstream Park judging #KidIdol (sponsored by Joe Dimaggio Children’s Hospital) alongside Channel 7 Meteorologist, Karlene Chavis and Shelby Rushin a.k.a the Midday Chic on 99 Jamz.
The event showcased seven of South Florida’s brightest young stars who shared their voices and great personalities, in hopes of winning a free trip to Los Angeles, California, to watch the Idol finale live in person! By the way, I’m totally jealous and wish I could go along for the ride, as I’ve been to the singing extravaganza a handful of times and it does NOT disappoint.
The contestants sang songs from artists like Lady Gaga, Bruno Mars, Adele and Sam Smith. At first, I thought it would be a fun afternoon of complimenting kids, but boy, was I wrong. These youngsters were so gifted, interesting and talented, I could barely contain my enthusiasm. What a gift it is to be able to sing and share it with the world! Or at least friends, family and patrons of the shopping center. Hey, everyone has to start somewhere.
As each youngster performed, I couldn’t help but be swept away by the beauty of youth. Not so much aesthetically speaking, although that’s always nice, too; but mainly the sheer hope, bewilderment and joy that a young spirit brings. I wasn’t just impressed by their poise, but also by their promising futures. Unfortunately, at the end of the contest, only one could come out on top, although, really, they’re all winners to me. The cute and undeniably sassy Joanna Martinez, who sang “I’m On The Edge of Glory” by Lady Gaga, took home the #KidIdol trophy. Congrats to everyone who participated and keep on singing and sharing your talents!
Shireen’s Weekend: One Split Second
On a hot and steamy Saturday night, the movers and shakers of the Magic City gathered in downtown Miami at the Grand Central to celebrate #OneSplitSecond, an event benefiting the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation. I was honored to host the fun, high-spirited gathering alongside Alan T. Brown and Alan Roth to raise money to find a cure for spinal cord injuries,
This event is very near and dear to my heart, as I suffered a spinal cord injury four years ago. Not in the traditional sense; mine was a virus that devoured my body (more specifically, my spine.) Because of the courage and forethought of Mr. Reeve, I was able to receive a life-saving drug called Intravenous Immunoglobulin. I eventually recovered and healed. The fight continues, though, to help educate, rehabilitate and cure those who are not as lucky as myself.
Along with an art auction, raffle tickets, great food and drinks, “Nahko and Medicine For The People” performed. Being around so many people who care and have the same charitable interests isn’t just powerful, it can be life-changing, as well. I’m always so honored to be included among this generous and loving group of people. For more information on how you can help, please visitwww.christopherreeve.org.
“Raise your words, not your voice. It is rain that grows flowers, not thunder.” – Rumi
Editor: Matthew Auerbach
Writer: Shireen Sandoval
Photographer: James Woodley
Kid Idol wardrobe: Hollen & Jen Vintage Showroom
One Split Second wardrobe: Kore Boutique