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Recap: Bridges of Understanding Award Dinner Honoring Arianna Huffington

On December 7th, our client “Bridges of Understanding” (BOU), an incredible non-profit, hosted its annual awards gala at The Stanley H. Kaplan Penthouse at Lincoln Center.

The event, which celebrates global citizenship, included the 9th annual presentation of the Building Bridges Award by David G. Bradley to celebrate journalist and founder of the Huffington Post Arianna Huffington, and the inaugural presentation of the Young Global Trailblazer Distinction to world refugee activist and author, Chaker Khazaal (Author of “Confessions of a War Child” and Esquire Middle East’s ‘Man of the Year’).

Both offered their inspiring words on the importance of building bridges between people, countries, and cultures. Following their acceptances, everyone enjoyed a beautiful performance by Broadway veteran Carrie Manolakos.

Partnering with the United Nations, the event also included a virtual reality pop-up exhibition on the UN Sustainable Development Goals, a set of 17 goals adopted by world leaders in 2016 to end poverty, fight inequalities, and tackle climate change over the next 15 years.

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With the current cultural climate, organizations like BOU are of increasing importance. The new programming includes Refugees Deeply, a single subject platform designed to clarify the complex web of geopolitical, human rights, environmental, legal, and other factors combining to make the refugee issue one of the most challenging of our lifetimes. Additionally, the existing Youth Talk video exchange program between high schools in the U.S. and the Middle East is now being piloted to middle school students, with the increasing belief that empathy building needs to start earlier.

It was an informative and inspirational night, with all funds raised going toward BOU’s education programs. 

About Bridges of Understanding:

BOU is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit, nonpolitical organization established in 2007, is driven by a mission to foster a personal understanding between the American people and people of the Arab World, as defined by the League of Arab States, through education and outreach programs that emphasize 21st century skills.  For those from and engaged in the region, the organization’s cornerstone initiatives provide an empowering lifeline — an opportunity to have their voices heard in the classroom and by their peers in the United States.  And, for Americans, these initiatives showcase the diverse Arab cultural legacy and paint thoughtful, nuanced portraits of those who respective homelands and histories are oftentimes distorted in the current sociopolitical landscape.

Award Dinner honoring fashion designer Reem Acra

Earlier in the month, non-profit “Bridges of Understanding“, held their annual awards dinner at Lincoln Center in New York City. This year they honored fashion designer Reem Acra and AMP3 PR handled publicity for the evening. The award was presented by Steven Kolb, the CEO of the CFDA, and the event was co-chaired by philanthropists Cathie Black and Tom Harvey.

BOU is an organization aimed at bridging the cultural divide between Americans and the Arab world, by providing in-school education initiatives that pair high school classrooms in the US with their peers in the Middle East through a videoconferencing-based curriculum. The goal is to teach youth about their commonalities, to overcome the cultural divide, to shift negative perceptions, and to grow towards a more empathetic future among nations. Previously held in DC, this was the first Building Bridges award dinner in NYC, and it honors individuals who further the mission and ethos of the organization.

Lebanese fashion designer, Reem Acra, is a perfect example of an empowered woman from the Middle East who has taken the basic cultural tradition of sewing which she learned from her mother, and harnessed it to become an entrepreneur and one of the world’s top couture designers.  She exemplifies the importance that the arts (and in this case fashion) have on building an understanding between peoples, especially during times of sociopolitical unrest. “The Council of Fashion Designers of America is proud to count Reem Acra among its prestigious membership of creative talent,” says Steven Kolb of the CFDA, “Fashion is a universal language of which Reem has a powerful voice.  Her beautiful clothes empower women around the world and there is no better example that similarities of cultures are greater than their differences.”

Of the honor, Reem Acra said: “It is both an honor and a privilege to be standing here tonight, an honor to be recognized for my participation in our efforts to promote a better world.  As you are aware, I spend the majority of my time in a world of magic and elegance; finding new ways to celebrate the woman’s inherent beauty and make life a more luxurious experience for everyone that I can touch.  I am always conscious however, of the need that we all have to give back.  When I became aware of “Bridges of Understanding,”  I knew that it was a place where my humble efforts could add to those of others, and together we could achieve the kind of change we all know is possible.”

Notable guests included: Reem Acra, Steven Kolb (CFDA), Cathie Black & Tom Harvey (co-chairs), Dr Mehmet Oz & his wife Lisa Oz, Ariel Foxman (InStyle), Bobbie Thomas (Today Show), Bevy Smith (Fashion Queens, Bravo), Noah Levy (Gossip Table), David Bradley (Owner, Altantic Media Group), and Dayle Haddon (Model). Funds raised from the evening will in part allow Bridges of Understanding’s education programs to find a home in New York City.

In November of this year, a New York City public school in the Bronx will be the first school to bring “YouthTalk” to the area, and will later pilot a new middle school curriculum, “Bridges at School.” At AMP3 PR, we were honored to merge our love for Fashion PR with philanthropy, and were delighted to have our media contacts further support the cause with coverage in fashion publications like WWD, regional newspapers like The New York Observer, and digital fashion outlets like The Fashion Times. For more information about the cause, visit: www.bridgesofunderstanding.org.

 

SPARK PRETTY OPENS “90’S FOREVER” POP-UP STORE IN NOLITA, NYC

On Wednesday, November 2nd, all of our dreams came true at the “90’s Forever” pop-up with online vintage retailer Spark Pretty. The store was filled with vintage items from the 1990’s; everything from apparel to novelty toys. It was nearly impossible to walk past and not be drawn in by the neon colors, Lisa Frank lunch boxes, beanbag chairs, Fruit by the Foot candies, and of course the amazing vintage clothing.

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Throughout the store you could find unisex t-shirts from tv shows such as Ren and Stimpy, Home Improvement, 90210, and Friends; awesome denim pieces like the hand-painted Janet Jackson, Madonna, Roger Rabbit and Barbie jackets; the famed red dress that “Cassandra” wore in Wayne’s World; Kelly Bundy-style bandage dresses; and Jazzercise lycra by Body Glove.

But as if the apparel wasn’t enough, there were novelty items all around! Including an MC Hammer doll, Spice Girls, and Blossom Russo dolls (all in the box), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fanny pack, MTV TRL microphones, Troll Dolls, and Beavis & Butthead slippers to name a few.

While guests took a nostalgic walk through the store, they were treated to Miller Light and delicious 90’s candies (like Gushers, Bubble Tape, and Fruit by the Foot). And before they left, they were sure to stop by the photo booth complete with the era’s best catchphrases like “As If” and “Zoinks”.

The Spark Pretty “90s Forever” pop-up shop was at 219C Mulberry Street fromNovember 3rd to Sunday November 6th.

About Spark Pretty:

Amanda Dolan is a lifelong collector and archivist of all things vintage. Together with her business partner Meagan Colby, whom she met while working at Betsey Johnson, they began showing at the Manhattan Vintage Show. Named by VOGUE as one of the must-shop vendors, the best friend duo has already supplied wardrobe for Broadway’s American Psycho,” TV’s “The Goldbergs,” upcoming Netflix series “GLOW,” and the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.

CAT FOOTWEAR LAUNCHES #MAKEASCENETOUR IN NYC

Pop Up Store, Caterpillar, Cat Footwear, Shoes, PR Agency NYC

On Wednesday, October 19th, our client, Cat Footwear, launched their U.S. #MakeASceneTour in New York City with a press event and cocktail party at the Bowery Station.

Throughout the day, influencers were taken through the AW16 collection and given a first look at the upcoming SS17 line. The space was then opened up for a cocktail party, which featured cocktails by master mixologist Pamela Wiznitzer, jams by DJ Jasper Stapleton, and an array NYC’s greatest eats including charcuterie by Cherry Point, adorable mini pop tarts by Hail Mary, and heavenly cookies and brownies by Ovenly; all thanks to The Brothers Buoy who curated the tasty line up.

As guests checked out the collection and enjoyed the cocktail party, they made sure to enter the Make A Scene Weekend Getaway contest! Everyone who enters has a chance to join Cat Footwear at one of our next tour destinations: Chicago or L.A.. The trip includes $1000 flight voucher, $1000 hotel voucher, $500 Visa Gift Card for spending money, and of course a pair of Cat Boots. You can enter to win at: bit.ly/masweekend
Luxury, Ath-Leisure, Athletic Footwear, PR Agency, Top Ranked, NYC

After a great night in NYC, Cat Footwear can’t wait to hit the road and head to the next stop on the #MakeASceneTour: Chicago!

More NYC event photos here.

For more information, visit: www.CatFootwear.com.

About Cat Footwear: Cat Footwear is a division of Wolverine Worldwide Inc., and the global footwear licensee of Caterpillar Inc.  For over two decades, Cat Footwear has been designing and engineering quality footwear that lives up to the hard-working reputation of the Caterpillar brand.  Rich in heritage, Cat Footwear began in the industrial work boot sector, and has since grown into fashionable lifestyle collections for urban, city-dwelling men and women.  As a brand, Cat Footwear focuses on quality, rugged leathers, old-fashioned craftsmanship and sophisticated details that defy their modest price tag. Today, Cat Footwear is sold in more than 140 countries worldwide.