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3 March 2021

Fire Department Coffee Announces An Initiative to Teach Lifesaving Skills to 22 Million People Through Comedy [Video Included]

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Fire Department Coffee Announces An Initiative to Teach Lifesaving Skills to 22 Million People Through Comedy
Fire Department Coffee Announces An Initiative to Teach Lifesaving Skills to 22 Million People Through Comedy (image via Fire Department Chronicles Youtube Channel)
Fire Dept. Coffee is setting a goal to teach 22 million people lifesaving skills through comedy.

"Comedy CPR" will be hosted by Jason Patton, the star of the popular Fire Department Chronicles videos. He'll bring a lighthearted approach to teaching real, hands-on skills that anyone can use in an emergency.
The goal of the ambitious project is to train 22 million people before the end of 2022, using a combination of in-person events, online training sessions and videos.

"All first responders get CPR training, but those sessions can get tedious and boring sometimes," Patton said. "I believe everyone should know CPR and basic lifesaving skills, whether you're a first responder or not. So we want to make it fun, share some laughs and teach people lifesaving skills."
Patton is an experienced firefighter paramedic in Florida and he's also the vice president of Fire Department Coffee. He's most known as the creator of Fire Department Chronicles, where he built a massive following with online videos that take a lighthearted look at the crazy, hectic and sometimes hilarious day-to-day lives of first responders.

The Fire Department Chronicles fast-growing YouTube channel has gained popularity due to Jason's funny videos about firefighter life. His most popular video titled "Comedy CPR!!!" teaches lifesaving skills and helped inspire this initiative. The video's description reads: "Learn how to save people's lives while laughing at the same time!"


In the video, Patton demonstrates the steps that an average person should take when they see someone unresponsive and not breathing. The video is filled with laughs but also with useful information aimed at educating the viewer while also putting them at ease and helping them feel confident about taking lifesaving action.

While this training does not count for formal CPR certification, the tactics and approaches do reflect the lessons taught to first responders and others in official settings. The training is real, and so are the laughs.

Dates and details for in-person and online training events are still being finalized. To receive an email when new information is available, sign up on the website today by clicking the "Notify Me" button.

About Fire Department Coffee:

Launched in 2016, Fire Department Coffee is veteran-owned and run by firefighters with the mission to make great coffee and an even greater mission to support our nation's heroes in need. Ten percent of the net proceeds go to help first responders who are injured on the job, mentally or physically, or who are facing other serious health challenges..

SOURCE: Fire Department Coffee

Bonus Video:

[Audio Blog Tour] 'State of Treason' (Book 1, William Constable Spy Thrillers) By Paul Walker #HistoricalFiction #audio

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[Audio Blog Tour] 'State of Treason' (Book 1, William Constable Spy Thrillers) By Paul Walker #HistoricalFiction #audio
'State of Treason' - Tour Banner

The Book:

State of Treason
(Book 1, William Constable Spy Thrillers)
By Paul Walker
  • Narrator: Edward Gist
  • Publication Date: February 2021
  • Publisher: Audible Studios
  • Page Length: 317 pages
  • Genre: Historical Fiction
[Audio Blog Tour] 'State of Treason' (Book 1, William Constable Spy Thrillers) By Paul Walker #HistoricalFiction #audio
'State of Treason' -Front Cover

The Blurb:

London, 1578

William Constable is a scholar of mathematics, astrology and practices as a physician. He receives an unexpected summons to the Queen’s spymaster, Sir Francis Walsingham in the middle of the night. He fears for his life when he spies the tortured body of an old friend in the palace precincts.

His meeting with Walsingham takes an unexpected turn when he is charged to assist a renowned Puritan, John Foxe, in uncovering the secrets of a mysterious cabinet containing an astrological chart and coded message. Together, these claim Elizabeth has a hidden, illegitimate child (an “unknowing maid”) who will be declared to the masses and serve as the focus for an invasion.

Constable is swept up in the chase to uncover the identity of the plotters, unaware that he is also under suspicion. He schemes to gain the confidence of the adventurer John Hawkins and a rich merchant. Pressured into taking a role as court physician to pick up unguarded comments from nobles and others, he has become a reluctant intelligencer for Walsingham.

Do the stars and cipher speak true, or is there some other malign intent in the complex web of scheming?

Constable must race to unravel the threads of political manoeuvring for power before a new-found love and perhaps his own life are forfeit.
Buy Links: Amazon Audio: Amazon UKAmazon US
  • This book can be read for free with #KindleUnlimited subscription.
[Audio Blog Tour] 'State of Treason' (Book 1, William Constable Spy Thrillers) By Paul Walker #HistoricalFiction #audio
'State of Treason' - Audio Cover

The Audio Excerpt:


The Author Bio:

Paul Walker is married and lives in a village 30 miles north of London. Having worked in universities and run his own business, he is now a full-time writer of fiction and part-time director of an education trust. His writing in a garden shed is regularly disrupted by children and a growing number of grandchildren and dogs.

Paul writes historical fiction. He inherited his love of British history and historical fiction from his mother, who was an avid member of Richard III Society. The William Constable series of historical thrillers is based around real characters and events in the late sixteenth century. The first three books in the series are State of Treason; A Necessary Killing; and The Queen’s Devil. He promises more will follow.
[Audio Blog Tour] 'State of Treason' (Book 1, William Constable Spy Thrillers) By Paul Walker #HistoricalFiction #audio
Paul Walker

[Audio Blog Tour] 'State of Treason' (Book 1, William Constable Spy Thrillers) By Paul Walker #HistoricalFiction #audio
'State of Treason' - Tour Schedule

2 March 2021

How To Transform Your Covid-19 Start-Up Into A Viable Business

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As the adage goes, 'necessity is the mother of invention,' and with the peculiar issues with the ongoing Covid-19, more and more people are becoming innovative. Some people have even become entrepreneurs overnight, finding solutions to new problems that have arisen—and making profits from their solutions. However, the question is, can such startups be transformed into viable businesses? How will government affairs impact your business? The future may be favorable, but how can these budding entrepreneurs sustain their businesses. Here are some vital things to seriously consider if you want to make your business viable.

Innovate and adapt

How To Transform Your Covid-19 Start-Up Into A Viable Business
How To Transform Your Covid-19 Start-Up Into A Viable Business (Image Credit)
Experts in the business industry will confirm that although consumers buy your products, it is the solution that you offer that they really care about. So the first thing to do here is to determine if your product is solving a long-term problem. The best solutions are direct responses to pressing, particular and significant problems. The ability to provide solutions in this Covid-19 times makes this assertion even truer.

For example, there was a need for many quality face masks and other PPE at the beginning of the pandemic, and many organizations and individuals rose to the occasion. Indeed, factories that were shut down were reopened to meet this need. However, will the problem exist in the next five years? You will have to answer this question to make sure your business doesn’t become redundant after a few years.

Building on existing trends

Some startups that started during the pandemic have leveraged existing trends that have been intensified and hastened due to the current prevailing conditions. Areas such as wellness, food supplements, DIY, social media, contactless deliveries, and others have seen exponential growth because they are things people want. Such businesses are not doing anything new but are doing them in new ways. Indeed, keeping a customer loyal means adapting to their needs as they evolve.

Do your research

To really understand the solutions you provide, you need to take a look into the past. Consumer behavior and patterns during such times have to be critically analyzed. Market trends from the past years should provide you with useful insight that should inform your business strategy for the future. If your solution is short-term, how long can you remain relevant? Put yourself in the consumers' minds and try to predict their needs. Then use the prevailing market conditions to guide you when coming up with solutions for their future needs. If your solution is a long-term one, you have to keep improving the solution, delivery, and customer satisfaction.

Identify the long-term market

The next major step to consider is to identify the long-term market. This refers to the group of people who will continue patronizing your solutions after things have returned to normal. According to CB Insights research, the most common reason startups failed was because of a lack of market. Not identifying your long-term market is not good for business. So please get to know your customers, understand their needs for your solutions. What is the potential market size? What is the actual market size? What can be done to increase the market size? Where are your customers found online and geographically? These are pertinent questions that need to be addressed.

Focus on the customer

How To Transform Your Covid-19 Start-Up Into A Viable Business
How To Transform Your Covid-19 Start-Up Into A Viable Business (Image Credit)
Always focus on the customer; the product or solution will not buy itself. Once you can figure out what the customer wants, you can always offer them a solution. To accomplish this, you should consider reading and researching the user-centered design. It will teach you how to stay in business for a long time by placing the customer above your solutions or products.

Be proactive

One of the hallmarks of successful businesses is the ability to pivot. Pivoting means tweaking your products or solutions to serve a bigger market. So, you should have enough information from your market trends and consumer patterns to know if you will need to pivot soon or much later. A lot of fortune 500 companies had to pivot at one point in time or the other. A strategic pivot could put you way ahead of the competition, who are slow to adapt. This can either make you a trendsetter or secure a sizeable amount of the market share, setting you up quite nicely financially.

Refine and define your business model

During these unpredictable times, a lot of solutions are being created for the goodwill of mankind. And as a solutions provider, you should really consider refining your business model when necessary. This will allow you to play an active role in making peoples' lives easier, better, and safer. This may set you up to even be eligible for some contributions. Indeed, running a business at full-throttle during Covid-19 may be unrealistic without some form of aid.

Consider social entrepreneurship

To make the most out of this situation, switch to a social entrepreneurship business model. Be a positive highlight in society, make a social impact and still make profits. There are several ways to do this. For example, you could donate a percentage of your profits to a recognized NGO helping fight against Covid-19. Or you could decrease prices or add more packages at no extra cost.

Mapping your business

How To Transform Your Covid-19 Start-Up Into A Viable Business
How To Transform Your Covid-19 Start-Up Into A Viable Business (Image Credit)
To securely map your business, look to the past and note how other great economic disruptions led businesses of the time to redefine their operating models without going under. The stock market crash in 1987 and the global recession of 2007 to 2009 are a few to look at. Mark Johnson, Clayton Christensen, and Henning Kagermann present a useful framework to reinvent your business model.
The current economic climate indeed validates the maxim that crisis breeds innovation and opportunity. There are many businesses out there that started because of Covid-19; the fact is a lot will go on to fold up. But unless you don’t plan on keeping the business long term, try not to become part of that statistic. The trick is to focus on the customer's needs and fashion your solutions to meet them. Also, remain relevant by identifying your market and pivot where necessary.

How to Reach Your Potential at University

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How to Reach Your Potential at University
How to Reach Your Potential at University (Image by Anastasia Gepp)
No one wants to waste the opportunity to attend university, but how do you achieve your full potential while studying? This article will discuss everything that you need to know to make the most of your higher education.

Find the Right University

Choosing the best university is a crucial part of your journey to success at college. But when deciding which university to apply for, there is no one-size-fits-all approach. While the Ivy League universities are the ones that enjoy a prestigious reputation, if they don't suit your individual needs and interests, you won't get the most from your education.

When choosing which universities to apply for, you will need to consider practicalities such as cost and location. Your choice of subject and the university's facilities for your area of interest are also vital considerations.

Another point to consider is the ethos of the university. During your time at college, you will associate yourself with these values, so it is worth researching universities you are interested in to ensure that your ethos matches the university. For example, Bashar Hanna, president of Bloomsburg University, hopes to "inspire and transform today's students into tomorrow's leaders." Visiting the universities in person is the next step to ensure that the university's culture and values align with your own.

Maximize Your Study Time

When you begin your university course, the amount of work involved can feel a little intimidating. However, try not to allow this to become a barrier to completing your assignments. When there is so much work to be done and many deadlines are approaching, it is easy to feel overwhelmed. For some students, the feeling of being overwhelmed can impact their ability even to get started. Procrastinating and panicking about how much work you have can be a natural response, but try not to let it stand in your way.

You may find that it is helpful to plan and allocate set time slots to work on each task to ensure that it is completed ahead of the deadline. Getting started on the assignments is the most important and hardest step. Once you have started, you should gain momentum and find that completing your work on time becomes so much easier.

Beware of Distractions

Attending university is a life-changing experience, and you may feel like you are entering a whole new world. It is essential to remember that many distractions on and off-campus could entice you away from your studies. Enjoying the student experience is a vital part of attending university, but don't let this stand in the way of your future success and scupper your study plans.

Make the Most of Opportunities

One of the best parts of attending university is all of the opportunities that are available to you. Staying on the look-out for opportunities that will look great on your resum├ę in the future is a perfect way to make the most of your time at university and to gain rich experiences as well as a highly-regarded academic achievement.

26 February 2021

Jade Patteri Releases New Music Video Calling for Unity [Video Included]

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Jade Patteri Releases Music Video for her original song Unity, which speaks to all barriers of biases and is comprised of a star-studded cast and production team. (Photo Credit Robert Lail)
Jade Patteri (Prom: The Movie Musical) is using her talent to make a positive impact on the world. Her newest music video Unity is the title track to her previously released EP comprised of original songs focusing on different societal issues that need attention. 

Unity speaks to all barriers of biases and is comprised of a star-studded cast and production team with Jade Patteri (Singer, Writer and Co-Director) at the helm. Produced and Co-Directed by Robert Patteri (Beauty and the Beast, Scarlet Pimpernel) the principal cast includes Paul Toweh as Rapper (Brat, Chicken Girls) and Dancers Marcus Emanuel Mitchell (Step Up the Series) and Kayla Radomski (So You Think You Can Dance). Fresh Redding (The LXD: Legion of Extraordinary Dancers) and Outrage used their brilliant choreography to empathetically bring the story to life. With Joseph Films and Unity Song Producer/Mixer/Master Ben Byram, the vision is complete.

Jade Patteri Releases New Music Video Calling for Unity [Video Included]
Jade Patteri Releases New Music Video Calling for Unity (screengrab)
The video opens with Jade and Toweh walking into a movie theater where they sit down and watch a movie: Unity. On the screen are Marcus Mitchell and Kayla Radomski surrounded by diverse people with tape on their mouths, symbolic of our fear of communicating to those who look different, love different, have different religions, countries of origin, or political ideologies. The screen flashes changing from color to black and white leaving only Mitchell and Radomski behind, their mouths now bound with tape. As they begin dancing with emotional conflict, we cut back and forth to the theater where Toweh and Jade are now younger versions of themselves. As they watch the dance, their pure, reactionary emotions dictate Mitchell and Radomski's change of emotion and movements. At the very end, the children have changed the conflict of the dancer's story to love. As they rise from their theater seats, they step into the movie where they remove the tape from the mouths of the dancers causing the screen to return to color with all the diverse people reappearing; this time without tape on their mouths—all joining together in Unity. The postscript at the end of the Music Video reads: "Choose love not hate, and then we can be the change." Jade Patteri. 

  • For more information on how you can be the change, go to Choose Unity.

 Unity - The Video:

When asked how the video represents current times she shared, "I wrote this song before George Floyd to be a voice of hope and love, addressing the racial and sexual inequalities and political and religious ideological differences that have been dividing us for too long. Then the tragedy of George Floyd, COVID and the political divides converged magnifying our disunity even more as reflected in our current cultural climate, escalating our need for Unity now more than ever."
Jade Patteri Releases New Music Video Calling for Unity [Video Included]
Jade Patteri Releases New Music Video Calling for Unity (screengrab)
Unity was filmed in locations around Los Angeles including Brickhouse Studios and a privately owned movie theater under all the necessary Covid compliance measures needed for the safety of cast and crew. Unity sends an important message given our current social climate. 

Patteri adds, "The message is so fresh and raw right now that it brought an extra layer of intentionality, purpose and healing to the shoot. I'm beyond grateful to the selfless contributions of everyone who brought this timely film to life."
Jade Patteri is a triple threat, chosen for the 2019 Broadway Artists Alliance/ John Raitt Award representing Southern California's High School students Off-Broadway as well as being awarded the 2019 Artist of the Year by the National Youth Arts Awards.

Jade Patteri Releases New Music Video Calling for Unity [Video Included]
Award winning actress, singer-songwriter and dancer Jade Patteri Releases music video calling for Unity on February 26th. "Choose love not hate, and then we can be the change." Jade Patteri (Photo Credit Lenore Brown)

Follow Jade on social media here:

SOURCE: Jade Patteri


24 February 2021

[Blog Tour] "Blood Libel" By M Lynes #HistoricalFiction #Mystery

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[Blog Tour] "Blood Libel" By M Lynes #HistoricalFiction #Mystery
Blood Libel - Tour banner

The Book:

Blood Libel
By M Lynes
  • Publication Date: 31st January 2021
  • Publisher: Independently Published
  • Page Length: 260 Pages
  • Genre: Historical Mystery

The Blurb:

Seville, 1495

The mutilated body of a child is discovered behind a disused synagogue. The brutal Spanish Inquisition accuses the Jewish community of ritual child murder - the
‘blood libel’. The Inquisition will not rest until all heretics are punished.

Isaac Alvarez, a lawyer working for the royal estate, is a reluctant convert to Catholicism who continues to secretly practice Judaism. When his childhood friend is accused of the murder Isaac is torn between saving him and protecting his family. Isaac is convinced that solving the murder will disprove the blood libel, save his family, and protect his faith.

As the Inquisition closes in how far will Isaac go to protect both his family and his faith?
Buy Links: Amazon UKAmazon US

[Blog Tour] "Blood Libel" By M Lynes #HistoricalFiction #Mystery
"Blood Libel" By M Lynes - Front cover

Blood Libel - Excerpt:

The testimony of Friar Alonso de Hojeda

Seville, Torre del Oro, April 1495

Deep in the heart of the night and I am alone in my cell. Sleep will not grace me with its balm. A single candle sputters, its light flickering across this parchment where I transcribe the secrets I dare not share with anyone, except you. I began this testimony two months ago having no one to confide in. The confession stall is far too dangerous. I must finish this entry before Lauds; it might be my last. I’ll discover the verdict of my earthly masters in a few hours. Then I may not have much longer to wait for the heavenly father’s judgment.

If this testimony is discovered whilst I live, I will burn on the cross. Once I depart this benighted world, I hope my testimony is found and that whoever reads it will not judge me harshly. Some might deem my actions sins. I fervently believe they were justified to further the faith. If absolution is not granted me in this life it will come in the hereafter; from the Almighty or from the readers of this account. Perhaps from both Him and you.

Is there one of the seven cardinal sins I have not committed? Pride, greed and envy, surely - but gluttony, anger and sloth are not weaknesses of mine. A tendency to self-pity is. It might not be a sin, but perhaps it should be. To even think that is to put words into God’s mouth. Another sin.

I have not spared myself in this account. I hope it will be viewed as an honest counterweight to the version of the story I fear will be propagated by those with most to lose from the real truth.

I look up at the only adornment on these walls and wonder whether Jesus on the cross looking down upon me forgives my thoughts, let alone my actions. I will get down on my knees and pray on my threadbare mat that he does. And that the Lord will guide me through whatever is to befall me when the sun rises.

[Blog Tour] "Blood Libel" By M Lynes #HistoricalFiction #Mystery
M Lynes

The Author Bio:

Michael is an author of historical mysteries who writes under the pen name of M Lynes. He has a particular interest in early 16th century Andalucia. He is fascinated by the interplay between cultures, globalization and religious intolerance of that period in Spain’s history. The ‘Isaac Alvarez Mysteries’ are set against this rich background. He won a prize for his fiction at the 2020 Emirates Literature Festival and is an alumna of the Faber Academy’s Writing a Novel course.

His debut novel ‘Blood Libel’, the first full-length Isaac Alvarez Mystery, was published in January 2021. Isaac, a lawyer working for the royal estate, must solve a brutal child murder to protect his family and his faith from the Spanish Inquisition.

Michael is hard at work on the second novel in the series and planning the third. He is originally from London but currently lives in Dubai with his family.
Connect with Michael: WebsiteTwitterFacebook

[Blog Tour] "Blood Libel" By M Lynes #HistoricalFiction #Mystery
"Blood Libel" - Tour schedule

23 February 2021

Phone Call Anxiety: Why So Many Of Us Have It, And How To Get Over It

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Phone Call Anxiety: Why So Many Of Us Have It, And How To Get Over It
Many people feel anxious when receiving a phone call. (Photo: Sergey Mironov)

Staying in touch with loved ones without seeing them in person has become even more important during the pandemic. But for some people, making or receiving calls is a stressful experience. Phone anxiety – or telephobia – is the fear and avoidance of phone conversations and it’s common among those with social anxiety disorder.

Having a hatred of your phone doesn’t necessarily mean you have phone anxiety, although the two can be related. There are, of course, many people who dislike making or receiving calls. But if this dislike causes you to experience certain symptoms, you may have phone anxiety.

Some emotional symptoms of phone anxiety include delaying or avoiding making calls because of heightened anxiety, feeling extremely nervous or anxious before, during and after the call and obsessing or worrying about what you’ll say. Physical symptoms include nausea, increase in heart rate, shortness of breath, dizziness and muscular tension.

If you feel like this, you’re not alone. A 2019 survey of UK office workers found 76% of millennials and 40% of baby boomers have anxious thoughts when their phone rings. Because of this, 61% of millennials would completely avoid calls, compared with 42% of baby boomers. If you suffer from these symptoms, there are some things you can do to make it easier.

Avoiding phone calls

Talking on the phone can be daunting because we’re limited to just the sounds of our voices. In the absence of all other social cues – including gestures, body language and eye contact – we can often feel self-conscious of the sound of our own voices and our choice of words.

Thanks to technology, we can often go days, weeks or even months without directly speaking to others on the phone. One study found anxious people prefer texting over phone calls, rating it a superior medium for expressive and intimate contact.

Some people opt for texting because it gives them time to think about the wording of their messages, providing the opportunity to be informal. In some cases, they develop a different personality separate and in contrast to their real-life, more reticent, self.

Phone Call Anxiety: Why So Many Of Us Have It, And How To Get Over It
Many people prefer texting to phone calls. (Photo: Tero Vesalainen)

Research also suggests phone anxiety is related to a preoccupation with what the other person thinks of them. By eliminating the immediate reaction of others in spoken conversations, text messaging may offer those with phone anxiety a way of making social contact without the fear of rejection or disapproval.

Another reason phone calls can sometimes feel overwhelming is the pressure that comes with being someone else’s focus. In face-to-face conversations, we have several distractions in our environment; like gazing out of the window or, ironically, checking the missed call notifications on our phones. This can make the interaction feel more casual and the conversation flow naturally. On a call, there are no external distractions, so it can feel like the spotlight is on us to answer questions straight away.

Pauses can feel extremely uncomfortable too. In person, you can see when someone is distracted or thinking but on the phone brief silences can feel awkward. We’re also becoming accustomed to being able to review emails, texts and social media posts before hitting the send button, so a phone conversation can feel impulsive and risky.

It’s easy to put off or completely avoid calls when you’re feeling anxious, but the more you procrastinate, the worse the anxiety is likely to get. The good news is you don’t need to suffer in silence, or over text messages. There are several useful techniques that may help you break the pattern.

Pick up the phone

One of the most effective ways to overcome phone anxiety is to expose yourself to more phone calls. The more you do it, the less overwhelming it becomes. It’s also likely that your phone anxiety is linked to a lack of experience. The more practice you have, the less anxious and more confident you’ll feel.

You can start this process by making a list of the people you need to speak to on the phone, such as friends or colleagues, and go through each one by reflecting on what it is about the call that makes you anxious. For example, it might be making a mistake or feeling judged. When the call is over, acknowledging your success will help you stay motivated for the next call.

If you’ve tried to combat your phone anxiety or you think you might benefit from seeking professional help, counselling is a great option and there are a number of talking therapies available. Cognitive behavioural therapy is a very effective treatment for social anxiety, and there’s an online option that might be a suitable alternative if you feel a bit nervous about speaking to someone in person.

About Today's Contributor:

Ilham Sebah, Teaching Fellow in Psychology, Royal Holloway

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. 

22 February 2021

3 Great Ideas for a Children's Party

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3 Great Ideas for a Children's Party
3 Great Ideas for a Children's Party (Image by Adina Voicu)
Children's parties have a long history of being underwhelming and generally the same. Whether you go swing so far into the cliche that you hire a party clown or let the kids run free in laser tag instead of partying, many options have been played out. Instead of leaning into the cliches, here are some of the best party ideas for any kid event that will have even the pickiest parents impressed with you!

Go Retro Fabulous

This plan doesn't mean you have to throw the sixties themed party for kids born in the 2010s! Instead, think about classic party themes and how you can make them fresh and exciting for children. In the 90s, roller-skating parties were all the rage. Because it's fallen in and out of style ever since then, you can rent out a roller skating rink for relatively cheap for an hour or two! Pump up this party by hiring entertainment that can skate or get the most fun themed food ever. If most kids don't yet know how to skate, this can be a fun learning opportunity for them! Keep in mind that you should keep a first aid kit on hand, or check and ensure that the roller rink has reasonable safety procedures. A skating party is only fun if nobody gets seriously hurt. You can also lean into other classic party themes, but it’s good to pick one that your kid will enjoy and want.

Hire Amazing Performers

Children still believe in magic and love to be dazzled and amazed by excellent performances. You can lean into the party clown idea by instead hiring some real circus performers to put on a show! These performers can do anything from acrobatics to magic; you have to consider how large your venue is and what your child would find most exciting.

You can take this another route by hiring Disney princess performers or even Paw Patrol performers to entertain the kids and their guests. If the party has any theme, you should have fun with it. This theme could mean pirate impersonators for a day on the beach or fantasy cosplayers for a fun day faking raiding a castle. Give yourself the chance to have fun and be creative.

Give Them Some Magic

If your child loves mermaids, the beach, or the ocean: lean into it! This is the time to go over the top and show them how much you love them. Add a little whimsy by hiring live mermaids to perform, throw the party at an aquarium or a small boardwalk theme park ride. Some theme parks have a rate where you can rent out rides, or areas of the park, for parties. Ensure that for parties where kids are running around, you have escorts on hand who can make sure everyone stays safe and happy. Although it may feel tempting to let the kids have the run of the park, every single accident or problem will come down on you. Be careful, and be safe.

19 February 2021

Over 200 Dogs From China Saved From Slaughterhouses, Dog Meat-Trade, Abuse & Neglect Will Soon Arrive in the U.S. on Their Way to Their Forever Homes

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Over 200 Dogs From China Saved From Slaughterhouses, Dog Meat-Trade, Abuse & Neglect Will Soon Arrive in the U.S. on Their Way to Their Forever Homes
Dogs in China awaiting to be adopted by a forever family in the United States.
China Rescue Dogs, an organization committed to rescuing and saving dogs from China and adopting them into homes in the U.S., is calling on the public to help them save over 200 additional dogs.

One hundred forty-five (145) newly rescued dogs will arrive via three cargo planes on March 3rd, 4th and 5th, 2021 at (JFK) John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. An additional sixty (60) will, hopefully, arrive in the United States at the end of March -- but it all depends on donations.
  • These dogs were saved from the inevitable. Many were saved off meat trucks, from slaughterhouses and rescued from abuse, and neglect.
"What was once the end of their lives, is now a new beginning for these beautiful babies," said Jill Stewart, President and Founder of China Rescue Dogs. "They all have been quarantined, micro-chipped, and received all the necessary vaccinations. Now, it is time for them to live the rest of their lives being safe and happy with their forever families."
China Recue Dogs is a 501c3 organization founded by Jill Stewart, an ardent advocate of animal rights worldwide, and especially in China. Their global mission is to rescue and rehabilitate dogs from China and provide them with loving forever homes in North America.

Stewart, along with her small team of volunteers are calling donors and fund-raising for this new life saving project. They now need to raise an additional $30,000 so they can bring in all two hundred (200) dogs and not have to turn any away.

Over 200 Dogs From China Saved From Slaughterhouses, Dog Meat-Trade, Abuse & Neglect Will Soon Arrive in the U.S. on Their Way to Their Forever Homes
Jill Stewart, President & Founder of China Rescue Dogs, welcomes a flight of dogs into JFK airport in January.
"Funding is crucial," admits Stewart. "We never say no to any dog -- mixed breeds, banned breeds, disabled dogs and seniors. We try to rescue them all. Unfortunately, we cannot do that without the public's continued support."

About China Rescue Dogs:

China Rescue Dogs is a 501c3 rescue with the purpose of rescuing dogs from the meat trade, abuse and neglect in China and providing them with loving homes.

SOURCE: China Rescue Dogs

Hip-Hop Icon Nelly Releases His 20th Anniversary Live Performance Of 'Country Grammar' In Its Entirety [Mini-Documentary Included]

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Hip-Hop Icon Nelly Releases His 20th Anniversary Live Performance Of ‘Country Grammar’ In Its Entirety. 'Country Grammar Live' available today as digital downloads and through streaming services
Today, Nelly dropped his new digital release Country Grammar Live (Republic/UMe) which was recorded live at the MelodyVR "Live From LA" studio last July in celebration of the 20th anniversary of Country Grammar
This is Nelly's first live release and features a live band which gives the album reinterpretation a distinct rock vibe, making Nelly a truly genre bending artist who has released a Country, Rap, R&B, and now a rock leaning album. 

Recorded as part of MelodyVR's ongoing Live From LA series which was originally broadcast through the MelodyVR app for a limited time, the Hip-Hop icon took fans back to the summer of 2000 with this special performance which included mega hits such as "Ride With Me" and "E.I."

February 19 also sees the premiere of the 20th anniversary mini-documentary Country Grammar – The Documentary (20th Anniversary), streaming now on Nelly's official YouTube channel. 

The mini-documentary features animated clips, new and old LIVE performance footage, and sees Nelly telling his story of the early beginnings as an artist with a unique style and sound, the creation of his Diamond-selling classic, Country Grammar, and how he put St. Louis on the hip-hop map.

Country Grammar – The Documentary (20th Anniversary):


Country Grammar debuted at No. 3 on the Top 200 and soon vaulted to No. 1. In 2016, the RIAA certified the album Diamond, selling more than 10 million copies to date, a feat which placed Nelly in the pantheon of rock superstars such as Led Zeppelin, the Doors and Bruce Springsteen. Country Grammar was also nominated for Best Rap Album at the 2000 Grammy Awards (along with its title track for Best Rap Solo Performance) and Nelly was crowned Best New Artist at the 2001 BET Awards.

Nelly – Country Grammar Live Track Listing:

  1. St. Louie
  2. Greed, Hate, Envy
  3. Country Grammar (Hot Sh*t)
  4. Steal The Show
  5. Ride Wit Me
  6. E.I.
  7. Thicky Thick Girl
  8. For Me
  9. Utha Side
  10. Thro Dem Wrappas
  11. Wrap Sumden
  12. Batter Up
  13. Never Let Em C U Sweat
  14. Luven Me

Hip-Hop Icon Nelly Releases His 20th Anniversary Live Performance Of 'Country Grammar' In Its Entirety [Mini-Documentary Included]
Nelly (screengrab)

About Nelly:

Born Cornell Iral Haynes Jr. in Austin, Texas, the rapper showed early promise, forming The St. Lunatics in 1993 with his childhood friends, MCs "Ali" Jones, Torhi "Murphy Lee" Harper, Lavell "City Spud" Webb, and Robert "Kyjuan" Cleveland. After Jay E workshopped the music with Nelly, they shopped for labels in New York and the rapper was signed to Universal Records in 1999. The pair drew deeply from the sounds that surrounded them in the Midwest — urban, country, hip-hop — and fused them into a fresh, infectious, unforgettably hooky whole.
SOURCE: Universal Music Enterprises

18 February 2021

Secret Theatre Presents 'Redemption Room' - The Live Online Thriller Experience Makes its World Premiere on February 27th [Trailer Included]

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Secret Theatre Presents 'Redemption Room' - The Live Online Thriller Experience Makes its World Premiere on February 27th [Trailer Included]
"Redemption Room" World Premiere on February 27, 2021 - a new live online theatrical thriller experience
"With the world still locked down, Secret Theatre look to unite us all in a live, online, immersive horror experience that can be streamed from anywhere in the world. And we can't wait."-- BBC RADIO 1
Making its World Premiere on February 27th, Redemption Room is a new live online theatrical experience where the virtual-studio audience gets to judge six disgraced celebrities as they seek redemption for their societal crimes.
Presented by Secret Theatre, this original innovative experience will go live across the world in a Zoom studio from six major cities, including Hong Kong, London, Singapore, Mumbai, Sydney and New York, where the celebrities are located.
A truly immersive format, Redemption Room takes a thrilling twist after an evil entity is awakened into the proceedings. Who will survive? Who will get their redemption? The virtual-studio audience will decide, voting on how far to push the celebrity's fears. But be warned, every-night one audience member will be asked to compete along with the celebrities. The virtual experience allows audiences to vote, judge, contact the celebrities directly and impact their outcome.
To get the full theatrical experience, turn off the lights, light a candle and be prepared for the unexpected. For those with paranormal fears, please prepare accordingly. If Ouija boards are your taste, there will be a moment when you can get involved.

Also, wearing black can summon demons – you have been warned.

The Trailer:


Secret Theatre are pioneers in global immersive events and have produced shows in 7 cities across the globe. Redemption Room is created and directed by Richard Crawford, who has been Artistic Director of Secret Theatre for over 10 years with many immersive credits to his name. He was responsible for directing the immersive Edward Scissorhands in New York, the immersive Project Mayhem in London and Hong Kong, and the immersive Hell Hath No Fury in Singapore.

  • Shows go live on February 27th and run through March 14th, 2021 and can be viewed on any device that supports Zoom.
  • Screening dates and times vary across the US, including a special scary Midnight show (PST) on March 13th.
Secret Theatre Presents 'Redemption Room' - The Live Online Thriller Experience Makes its World Premiere on February 27th [Trailer Included]
"Redemption Room" a new online immersive thriller experience goes live from 6 cities around the globe beginning February 27, 2021

SOURCE: Secret Theatre

17 February 2021

The Hero's Journal Team Releases New Journal, Istoria Magic Academy, on Kickstarter [Video Included]

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The Hero's Journal Team Releases New Journal, Istoria Magic Academy, on Kickstarter
The Hero's Journal - A filled out journal
The team behind the popular The Hero's Journal today announced that its newest offering, The Hero's Journal: Istoria Magic Academy, is now live on Kickstarter, where they reached 100% of their funding goal in under 9 minutes.
The Hero's Journal
launched in 2019 via a successful Kickstarter campaign. Over the past two years, a vibrant community of journalers has formed organically on social media to share stories and seek advice.
"Thanks to our first Kickstarter, The Hero's Journal quickly transformed from a simple idea to a community of 25,000 journalers," said Nick Vitellaro, the 27-year-old co-founder.
He added: "During the past year, we learned a lot about what our fans like about the Journal and how it helps them achieve their goals. Today, we're excited to go back to Kickstarter, where it all started, to release a new edition that incorporates feedback and suggestions from our amazing community."
During 2020, the team witnessed firsthand how the Journal is helping people cope during the pandemic. For example, one community member commented: "I've been feeling pretty scatterbrained since quarantine started, but this journal has really helped create more structure in my daily life, in the most fun and thoughtful way."
The Hero's Journal Team Releases New Journal, Istoria Magic Academy, on Kickstarter
Daily Artwork Helps Inspire the Imagination and Make Every Day of Journaling Unique
The Hero's Journal: Istoria Magic Academy is based on a story about magic. The process of learning something new, working through failure, and discovering the ordinary magic of changing the world around you through words and actions.
"We expect that the new edition will resonate with our current community as well as with a new group of journalers who are looking to embark on a new adventure during a uniquely challenging time," said Nick.

The Video:

About The Hero's Journal:

Stories are the oldest form of human communication. From the earliest books ever written to the latest box office hit, humans are hardwired to communicate in the form of narrative. And there is no narrative more important to the core of each of us than the story we tell about ourselves. We set out to create a journal that would combine the power of self-narrative with the psychology of goal setting. The result? The Hero's Journal—now used by thousands of heroes around the world. From brainstorming the journal in 2018 to launching a kickstarter in 2019 to quitting our full-time jobs in the beginning of 2020, we've been blown away by the support of a community that keeps selling out every single one of our production runs. 

SOURCE: The Hero's Journal

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