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My 35th Birthday Party Red Carpet Event

I am BEYOND grateful for everyone that was present to share in celebrating my 35th Birthday with me recently. I wanted this to be an evening where I could truly forget all of life’s struggles and disappointments and be grateful for just being alive and able to see 35 years of living.


These pillow covers were custom made by adorablebycandice.com as part of the Hollywood theme of my event.

In 2015 as many of you know I experienced a multitude of losses both professionally and personally throughout the entire year–one after the other, after the other. I must say that in all my years of living that 2015 definitely takes the award for the most tumultuous and saddest year, ever.

However, I’ve managed to make it through one way or another without being committed to a psychiatric institution!

I joke, but I thank the creator for his grace and also for being consciously aware in the understanding of my relationship to Him.

I didn’t die, I’m not homeless, I’m not starving, and although my physical, mental, and emotional health are challenging for me at the moment I’m still standing.


DJ Sean Mac and his manager provided the sounds for my 35th Birthday party red carpet event.

On Saturday, December 26th, 2015 Bliss by Sam Weddings & Occasions hosted one of the most amazing birthday events for me that I’ve ever had the privilege to experience in my entire life.

The event was held at theWit Hotel‘s private event space Cibo Matto, which is downtown Chicago at the corner of State and Lake and the theme was Hollywood glam! The theme colors were black and gold, but of course not everyone complied. Bliss by Sam also decorated the space in concert with the black and gold theme of the party. So the pillows as well as the lighting all made for an event space that was truly customized and event ready.

I was thrilled that Summer Jackson, TV and Lifestyle reporter and producer for WCIU came out to host and interview my guests for our red carpet segment.


From left, Chrishon Lampley, founder of Love Cork Screw and my good friend Elemuel came out to enjoy the festivities with me.

In order to make this birthday event one of the best ever, I had the support of some very talented vendors and event professionals.

Red Weddings Luxury Photography & Video services provided all of the professional photography and video services, Adorable Designs by Candice which provided all of the intricate design work from the invitations to the step and repeat backdrop for the red carpet, as well as nationally acclaimed DJ’s, DJ Shotime and DJ Sean Mac. Sean Mac is notably recognized for being the premier DJ on tour with recording artist Rick Ross and was named Midwest DJ of the year in 2012. I was honored to have had all of these individuals share in creating such an amazing experience for my milestone birthday of 35 years.


From left, my stylists David Northington, longtime friend Antoine Hale, Entrepreneur and Jus Juus proprietor Marquese Hayes, and my barber of 20 years Robert Garrett in the Red top.

I initially decided against having a celebration this year but I was convinced otherwise and I’m happy I changed my mind. The support staff at theWit hotel was very friendly and they went out of there way to help create a really great experience for the event overall! I was thrilled with the venue, the catering of the food, and the service to my guests.


Moments before our onsite viewing of my event in Screen on the 4th floor of theWit hotel. This is a private movie theatre that you can rent for any event and we had an amazing time during the viewing!

In addition to the Cibo Matto event space where the event was held, the hotel also gave us access to their private movie theatre called Screen. You can rent this theatre as an add on for your event which is located on the 4th floor of the hotel.

Prior to the start of the event I did a lot of photography and videography so that I could add most of this footage to my own personal files for use with my blog and other content creation ideas that I generally come up with. Creating memories is something I love to do so when I was told that we could use the space I was absolutely thrilled!

We needed the use of Screen for the onsite video shoot of the event which was orchestrated by the staff at Red Weddings.

It basically works like this: The vendor brings videography equipment onsite, shoots footage of your event throughout the duration, edits that footage onsite during the event, and allows the guests to view this footage at the conclusion of the event. A really great concept that was suggested by Bliss by Sam in an effort to make for an amazing guest experience. I don’t have the final copy of the video to post with this blog post but the final edited video will be on my Youtube channel before the month is out.

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We wanted to incorporate as much of social into this event as possible and Bliss by Sam was very instrumental in coming up with the hashtag and branding for the party. It was a party, yes, but I am definitely a brand!


From left, my good friend DJ Peace (Jerry) and my barber of 20 years Robert Garrett.


This picture is from the afterparty at The Roof of theWit hotel. Grateful to everyone that came out!

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