It’s hard to believe February is approaching… It feels like just yesterday Allison Holker and Steven “DJ Twitch” Boss hosted the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals’ Dance for Kids Holiday Party. The impact of the event was so profound, not only because the party was a blast for kids of all ages – from young hospital patients to celebrity kids like Mackenzie Hancsicsak of NBC’s “This is Us” and twins Benjamin and Matthew Royer of Disney’s “Best Friends Whenever” – but because it was truly inspiring for adults as well.
The Avalon Hollywood was transformed into a glowing winter wonderland dance floor, surrounded by stations for face painting and caricatures, a Flipbooth photo booth, a Kona Ice water ice stand, gourmet cotton candy by Love Swirls, and tables for Tiny Prints holiday card decorating. It was a joy to watch patients from Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and Children’s Hospital Orange County interact with their celeb idols from television and film, and mingle with celebrities’ kids as well. Dean Cain was accompanied by his teenage son Christopher, and Perez Hilton also brought his son, Mario, to participate in the dance-a-thon. It was surely a who’s who of young Hollywood, but the day was really just about kids having fun dancing, singing, laughing, and just being kids.
This theme was most evident by the highlight of the afternoon – when Miracle Kid Isiah Acosta performed his original rap song “Oxygen to Fly” with rapper Trap. Isiah was born without a jaw, and therefore without a functioning mouth or voice box. Yet Isiah is a boy with so much wisdom and so much to say… Although he has been offered various opportunities to receive further reconstructive surgery, Isiah has chosen to forego construction of a mouth and live life exactly the way he was born. He believes that every child is beautiful exactly the way he or she is, that uniqueness is a gift, and that there are no limitations to any child’s dreams or abilities to succeed in life. Isiah delivered this beautiful message in his original song “Oxygen to Fly,” and when he took the stage with his surrogate rapper Trap, his lyrics conveyed meaning far beyond that of any one voice.
Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, represented by its iconic Miracle Balloon symbol, serves 170 member hospitals across the United States and Canada, providing funds for 32 million pediatric treatments each year. Fundraising efforts like Dance For Kids go towards funding medical equipment, critical treatments, and charitable care, and since its inception in 1983, Children’s Miracle Network has raised over $5 billion. Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles and Children’s Hospital of Orange County are two local Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, both rated nationally for cutting edge research facilities like The Saban Research Institute and state-of-the-art treatment centers like the Hyundai Cancer Institute.
Other sponsors of the fantastic day included California’s own Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Good Works Make a Difference, Suja Juice, and AQUAhydrate. DJ Bizzy DJ’d curated the musical soundtrack for the dance-a-thon, and a live stream of the event was provided by DanceOn.
Although the Dance for Kids Holiday Party was weeks ago, I still feel inspired by Isiah’s voice that day, and the voice he gave his fellow Children’s Miracle Network Hospital Miracle Kids. It was a sparkling day in Hollywood that has continued to glow beyond the holiday season.