I’ve been kind of busy these past few months. It all culminated a week ago at Yamashiro, atop the Hollywood hill that also hosts The Magic Castle. Indeed, it really was magical. All the hard work really paid off – at least from where we were standing. And it was fun to celebrate a culture that only continues to influence as well as permeate our urban lifestyle in Los Angeles. We tried to celebrate that in the best way we know how.
With last year being an inaugural success, the Blogger Prom Committee and I had a solid boiler plate to improve upon for this year. While it was fun to recreate the ’80s, we knew that we wanted to keep things interesting and change it up. So, we decided to go even further back in time and a tad more grown-up. OK, maybe a lot more grown-up – as in glamorous Hollywood. We became inspired by a particular Los Angeles-specific movie chronicling crime, press and celebrity in the ’30s and ’40s; our theme was Hollywood Confidential. Fortunately, we also had the setting that would be the perfect backdrop for our theme – Yamashiro. Their team was an absolute dream to work with ï»¿throughout the entire process, displaying the utmost in professionality and hospitality. I would recommend Yamashiro to anyone looking for a place to hold a high class event.
…And the food! Who could forget the food? Chef Brock of Yamashiro brought his famous Garden Market tacos to the event as well as unveiled a brand new one incorporating Brock Family Farms’ sausage. They were delicious and perfectly complemented by his als0-famous wasabi guacamole and chips. Passed YamaBites were plentiful and guests enjoyed Asian-style ribs, albacore with jalapeno on fried crackers and more. We had Barrie Lynn, the Cheese Impresario, return from last year and educate us on the wonders of Wisconsin cheese. It is always a joy to have her and as a cheese fanatic, myself, I couldn’t be happier she was there. We also had amazing chocolates from Chocolate Box Cafe and Coolhaus ice cream sandwiches where you could customize your own sandwich.
Last year, it was an amazing thing to flex our star power and experience first-hand just what muscle L.A. bloggers have as influencers on our city. This year, we wanted to take it to another level and give back not only to bloggers but also to our community. And so, thanks to Blogger Prom Committee for taking on my suggestion of benefiting Operation Frontline Los Angeles. I became inspired by their ground-up approach to cooking and nutrition by providing classes to those who would otherwise not have access to these invaluable tools. (You can still donate to Operation Frontline Los Angeles here.) Admission to our closed event required a $10 donation to OFL, with Goldstar so graciously providing the donation ticketing. We ended up raising $2400 for the program. I’m proud that with all our resources, we could put on such a great event while benefiting a great cause.
Studio DNA provided the ladies of the Blogger Prom Committee with spectacular, era-specific make-overs. I wish I could have worn my hair the way it was styled for days! I was also really happy with how my makeup turned out, with a very subtle eye and bold lip. Thank you SO much for our looks!
Verizon Wireless (Twitter) returned this year and gave us a signal when there would have been none! (It wouldn’t have been much of a Blogger Prom without internet, huh?) Since Yamashiro is one of the oldest properties and structures in the city, it was an even bigger task to set up when combined with the hill’s natural obstructions. In addition, they held a MiFi giveaway on Twitter, which Hollywood Housewife won! I’m so jealous!
Pinky Vodka returned as our signature cocktail liquor sponsor with Cabana CachaÃ§a, Zaya Rum, Casa Noble Tequila and Fresh & Easy wine also available at the main bar. We also had tastings held around the courtyard. The Beer Chicks brought locally-brewed Eagle Rock beer for us to try and Dalmore was also present to give us a taste of their Scotches. Delicious!
Heather Kincaid snapped photos in our mini photo booth as well as mingled with the rest of us for some candid shots. She did such a lovely job. Take a peek on her website for the official photos.
We also decided to streamline our giveaway process for this year’s event. Last year, we had pretty awesome prizes as we did this year; however, we went the traditional route and stopped (and started, and stopped, and started) our event to draw the winner and announce them. Then, of course, the winner would have to walk up and claim their prize. But what is a blogger nowadays without social media? So we put my laptop up on the projector screen and had Tweetdeck on display with three columns: The official @BloggerProm stream, all #BloggerProm hashtag mentions and @BloggerProm mentions. We used our @BloggerProm Twitter account to announce the winners with the giveaway table and Operation Frontline nearby. And yes, there were some pretty awesome giveaways with values ranging from $100 all the way up to $600, with night stays in an Andaz suite and a package to The Edison, also with a night stay at nearby downtown hotel.
We had quite a task compiling a pretty awesome giftbag, but I have to say that there were a ton of great things in the bag with plenty more coupons to redeem around the city. Heck, the bag itself was an awesome vintage Mickey tote bag, complete with Grammy Museum tickets, a $100 Luxe Lash gift certificate, Dermalogica facials and coupon, O.N.E. coconut water (great hangover cure), Border Grill vouchers (perfect for the re-opening in Downtown LA), a Manila Machine ube cupcake coupon, and way more.
Overall, it was a huge success. I’d say that I “can’t wait for next year,” but my mind is more on recooperation for now! It’s definitely the most rewarding, annual event I’ve helped put on. And I’d like to give my congratulations to this year’s Blogger Prom King and Queen, Neil of Food Marathon and Jocelyn of JozJozJoz as well as whole-hearted thanks to Test Kitchen (only the most exciting place to eat in LA right now and where the afterparty was), the Blogger Prom Committee and our volunteers for being my partners in crime…