Junior Journalism Day

December was a busy month! Sideline Pass joined forces with the Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation to launch a Junior Journalism program! Our junior writers and photographers enjoyed the unique opportunity of covering Media Day for the R & L Carriers New Orleans Bowl, with the help of some of the most prestigious professional journalists and photographers in the Greater New Orleans area! Each junior journalist teamed up with one of these professional mentors to photograph and/or interview the players and coaches participating in the R & L Carriers New Orleans Bowl, which featured the ULL Ragin’ Cajuns versus the Golden Eagles of USM. The Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation then featured the work of every junior journalist on its website. Fabulous work ladies! Check out the final product: https://sites.google.com/site/jrjournalismgnosf/

A huge thanks to Sam Joffray at The Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation, as well as our mentors: Juan Kincaid (Fox 8 Sports Director), Liz Reyes (Fox 8 News Anchor), Sean Fazende (Fox 8 Sports Anchor/Reporter), Doug Mouton (WWL TV Sports Anchor), Tamica Lee (WWL Traffic Reporter), Mike Detillier (WWL Sports Radio Host), Kati Morse (Tulane Athletics), Lauren Cason (New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau), Debbie Grant (VP of Public Relations for Tulane University), Caitlin Piper (The Earhardt Group), Trent Spann (Images by Robert T), Laura Bergerol Photography, Geovanni Velasquez (Black and Geauxld Photography) and Kathy Anderson Photography. Everyone had a wonderful time, and our junior journalists gained a wealth of knowledge and experience.

Toy Drive and Delivery Day

The New Orleans community’s generosity was once again amazing and humbling! We collected thousands of gifts through our donation sites at One Shell Square, The Rice Mill Lofts, Ruth’s Chris Steakhouses, and Stein Mart, in addition to what was collected at the kick-off party. Delivery Day was exciting and long! Our Sideline Pass elves first brought several car loads of toys and gifts to The Haven Women and Children’s Shelter in Houma. We then returned to New Orleans to re-load the sleighs and head to Rain Tree Family Services with gifts for our foster girls, as well as the children Rain Tree services throughout the community. Unbelievably, Rain Tree’s goal is to have ONE gift for every child they service come Christmas time. Through the New Orleans community’s generosity, Sideline Pass could help Rain Tree meet and exceed that goal. We don’t think that one gift per child is enoughJ

Toy Drive Kick Off Party

This year, Sideline Pass kicked off our second annual holiday toy and gift drive with another Thursday Night Football tailgate party in the winter wonderland of Ruth Chris’ patio on Fulton Street! Special guests included Saints players and alums Tom Morstead, Justin Drescher, Will Lutz, Jeff Charleston, Jabari Greer and Fred McAfee. Pelicans players and coaches jumped in on the action as well, including Langston Galloway, Alexis Ajinca, Phil Weber, Robert Pack and Darren Erman. WWL radio’s Mike Detillier was also a special guest. The price of admission - simply the donation of a toy or holiday gift for our foster girls and flood victims at Copper Mill Elementary School in Zachary. We had a packed turnout, as guests filled our sleigh with gifts, enjoyed our Envog Photo Booth courtesy of Daniel Nguyen and visited with the players and coaches. Our emcees for the night kept the party going – thank you WWL TV’s Tamica Lee and Super Fan JJ Robertson! Silent auction items included donations from Reagan Charleston Fine Jewelry, The Boulder Lounge (Kelsey Confreda), Better Than Ezra (Delery Cook), New Orleans Fashion Week (Tracee Dundas) and the Optimum Cut and Blow Dry from Biba Isla Salon (Biba Isla). Thank you so much ladies for your generosity!

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New Orleans Boulder Lounge

Climbing to new heights: figuratively and literally! Sideline Pass kicked off 2016 with a day at New Orleans Boulder Lounge – the city’s newest boulder climbing gym!

We teamed up with Girls on the Run once again for a fantastic afternoon of exercise and inspiration. Our athletes and mentors learned how to dominate the boulder walls - thanks to expert instruction, athletic skill and a little bravery. It’s harder than it looks, but also a ton of fun!

Our generous mentors shared their stories of struggle and success before and after the climbing adventure. Mentees heard from Louisiana Supreme Court attorney Alanah Odoms Hebert, Sunbelt Conference Sideline Reporter Kati Morse, WWL sports anchor Leslie Spoon, actress Lila Blake Palmer, network TV producer Colleen Snyder, counselor Danielle McAllister, attorney Chelsea Cusimano, Fox Sports sideline reporter Jennifer Hale as well as engineer & Miss Louisiana Fammy Famularo.

We also loved getting the scoop on our hostess, Kelsey Confreda, who owns the Boulder Lounge, in addition to pursuing her master’s degree at Tulane University. Talk about a young lady who does it all!

A huge thank you to Kelsey, as well as the ICAN Foundation for providing healthy snacks. Chevron, artist Martha Adams, philanthropist Terry Snyder - plus Wink Design and Events – graciously provided awesome swag bags filled with goodies when our afternoon ended.

We’ll see everyone next month!

Night of Hope Benefit Dinner at English Turn Golf & Country Club

Sideline Pass hosted a magical Night of Hope on January 7 inside English Turn Golf & Country Club for 30 special guests. This fundraiser will help Sideline Pass send our foster girls from RainTree Family Services to prom this spring in the dress, shoes and accouterments of their choice! The fairytale atmosphere was created by Wink Design and Events, Bella Blooms Floral, Exquisite Events Invites and Firefly Ambiance. (If you’d like to see more of this unbelievable table setting, be sure to check out the spring edition of New Orleans Weddings Magazine!)

Our guests were treated to a 4-course meal courtesy of English Turn. Tasty mini King Cake was a special treat for King's Day thanks to Bakers Dozen.  Veuve Champagne was provided by Trey Monaghan and Molly’s At the Market. The Malcolm Jenkins Foundation generously provided excellent wine to accompany dinner. New Orleans’ favorite musician Robin Barnes and Pat Casey delighted guests, who danced the night away in the candlelight. Gorgeous photographs were graciously captured by Geovanni Vasquez of Black and Geauxld Photography.

Special thanks to the Irving Morris Foundation and Acme Oyster House for providing an amazing raffle package including pearl earrings, several gift cards and a swag bag! Our generous supporters also created a stellar silent auction that included a Carousel Tiger necklace from Reagan Charleston Designs, game-worn gloves and cleats from former Saints player and current Washington Redskins running back Pierre Thomas, a custom jacket from Fellow Suits, a golf outing courtesy of English Turn, a signed jersey from the Saints Cam Jordan and a collector’s edition basketball signed by the entire New Orleans Pelicans basketball team. Gift bags were stuffed with special gifts which included a hardcopy of Under Our Skin authored by New Orleans Saints Ben Watson, Da Cajun Critter Cookbook by Pam Lyles, Slap Ya Mama Cajun Seasoning, FELLOW Custom Suits and a Member for a Day access from English Turn.

Jennifer Hale’s dress is a Pedram Couture original. Expert stylist Lynna Vo created Ms. Hale’s makeup for the evening.