Dinner with Luda

So last night I was the guest of the Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation at the 4th Annual Ludacris Foundation Benefit Dinner here in Atlanta. The dinner was followed by a Casino Night After-Party.

Contrary to the one sided image of hip hop that the media portrays, The Ludacris Foundation provides a complete approach when it comes to community service by not only providing monetary support, appearances but also by donating time in the communities. Since 2001, The Ludacris Foundation has donated financial support to grassroots organizations that work to help youth, as well as invested 7,000 hours in devoted service to young people across the nation. The many programs in support of the Foundation have impacted over 7000 lives.

I remember back in the day when Chris Bridges was on Hot 107.9 rapping for the promos and djing in the evening. It is great to see his career actually unfold and develop, and at the same time he hasn't forgotten his community along the way. He definitely needs to be recognized for his diligent work with youth and the community, especially when so many celebs are starting foundations as tax shelters and not really doing much work.

With all the hard work that the foundation has been doing, it is unfortunate that last night's event didn't live up to the price tag. As a special event consultant, I always walk in looking at events to see what ideas and lessons I can walk away with. The lesson here was Roberta Sheilds, President of the Foundation and Luda's mom, needs to fire their event planner. The theme for the evening was Karma (for the literal translation and being Luda's daughters name). However the theme which should have been carried throughout the event was left merely at the hostess in robes that were supposed to be kimonos and an Asian musician playing a guitarlike instrument as people moved from the reception to the dinner. The silent auction lots were still being displayed as we milled around the reception surrounded with black drape. The food was not Asian inspired... and undercooked. The comedy of Bruce Bruce was long, boring, and unoriginal. The two no name acts were... well lets just say I see why they are no names. Bobby Valentino was a disappointment as well. He came out and apologized for his recent single not being appropriate, and instead did a Babyface cover. Hard to believe that he doesn't have one song on his new album that wasn't about sex, drugs, or some other nonsense. (Did I mention he is short as HELL... 5'5" at most). And the choice of the Apparel Mart as a venue was not quite well thought out.

The Foundation honored Bishop Eddie Long, Radio One maven Cathy Hughes (so underwhelming to be so wealthy) , and Hip Hop Icon and Mogul Russell Simmons for their work in the community and success in their industry. Not only were those three in attendance but Star Jones and Al "How You Doin" Reynolds; Alonzo and Tracey Mourning; CeeLo or Gnarles Barkley or whomever he is this month; Kevin Lyles (very personable... I like him) ; Ben Chavis; Chingy and several others that I just can't think of right now.


Overall the event was to raise money for the foundation and to uplift people that are doing good work so for that I enjoyed it... but please fire your event manager because they did a disservice to all the good work your organization is doing.

14 comments:

celeste said...

ooooo star jones... why no pic with the hubby 2?

Anonymous said...

why no pic of the guy u were with last night

KennonPurdy said...

ummm, this is what kills me about gay dudes...blamming a man for something he has no control over. i.e "did I mention he was short as hell like 5'5" You say that like he stole something or some how lied or tricked you... He can't help that, like I cant help I'm 6'0. His hieght is his hieght. Comment on his talent or lack there of,but don't "blame" a dude for something he has no control over...

ReddMann said...

blamed him?

i stated an observation.

please remember this is my blog so i can make any comments I choose about anyone and anything...

colinnyc said...

it is sad that people dont hire professionals to handle their business... with those nominees and his name that event should have been phenomenal.

Daryl said...

Maybe, by going cheap on the event planning they were able to give more money to charity.
Now, since you are in the know about event planning I see a niche here. you can provide excellent, tasteful, creative, and classy events at a price that does not put the squeeze on the bottom line for giving.

Oh, I know that this is your site, and you can say what you want, but short can be sexy. however, I know that short men get a lot of discrimination not only sexually, but in the work place. So carry on with the status quo.

life said...

Oh Luda, that was not a good look. Anonymous, you're doing way too much! Look at your rubbing shoulders with who's who

WhozHe said...

I didn't know about the Ludacris Foundation. I'm impressed, hats off to Luda. By the way, great pics!

Cocoa Rican said...

Pa, why you lookin’ scared as hell?! LOL Nostrils flaring and eyes like a deer caught in the headlights… LOL
From the rest of us shawties of the world… cut the crap jolly-red-giant… hey, us longitudally challenged brothas pack better proportions…
Glad you had a good time… this gave me a good laugh. Kennon…papi… let me find out we midgets have found our liaison to the tall community…
Hey at 5’7” I’m middle of the road munchkin! Keep smilin’ folks!

Anonymous said...

why are short people always so defensive about height??

Quadrus said...

5'3" is his actual height it it was a real bummer to me cause I was gonna try to hit that.

ShawnQt said...

Look at you brushing shoulders! I love Luda!

twinston1911 said...

well i just love short guys, and im 6.2, no hate here lol

this seemed like a nice event,

Anonymous said...

I am 1 of the performers that performed that night and the response I recieved was quit different than the 1 your giving. MYSPACE.COM/JAYRUSH1