First LagunaPalooza Concert this weekend will raise money for great causes

The first-ever LagunaPalooza Concert for Charity, featuring American Idol contestant Andrew Bloom, will raise money for Waymakers Laguna Beach Youth Shelter and the National 9-99 Police and Sheriff Foundation.

The concert takes place this Saturday, May 25, from 4 - 11 p.m. at HotelSeven4one in Laguna, and will include an open bar, gourmet cuisine, silent auction items, and other special entertainment to raise funds for the two worthy causes.

The 9-99 Foundation, which organized the event, is thrilled that Andrew Bloom will be headlining the show. Bloom, a pop and R&B guitarist and vocalist, counts among his influences Allen Stone, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, and John Mayer. He was just 17 years old when he was a contestant on American Idol Season 14. (He is now 21.)

With an emphasis on resolving the crisis and providing long-term stability, Waymakers works with families and leverages community resources to create healthier situations at home. Waymakers Youth Shelters have touched more than 13,457 family members and served more than 5,317 at-risk Orange County youth since opening in 1979.

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American Idol contestant Andrew Bloom

The National 9-99 Police and Sheriff Foundation assists the law enforcement officers who put themselves in harm’s way to protect our community. Their bravery brings great sacrifices of career-ending injuries, post-traumatic stress, and line of duty deaths. The 9-99 Foundation is there for these heroes when they need it most, providing support, guidance, and relief to injured law enforcement officers and their families through financial aid and mental health.

The 9-99 Foundation Grant Recipient Justin Ellis is just one example of the wonderful work that the Foundation does to help law enforcement personnel.

“Thanks to the donation from the 9-99 Foundation, I was able to complete four physical therapy training sessions at REACT. These are two-hour sessions where I worked with two different trainers who pushed me towards a goal. Mine was to stand in my leg braces and build up my endurance & strength,” Ellis says.

“Due to me pushing myself and having this money to make these sessions happen, for the first time in two years I was able to stand without a walker in my leg braces for our family Christmas photos. This was an incredible experience for me, and for both my children and wife to see me stand after it being so long since I last stood. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

There are several opportunities for Lagunans to make a difference in the lives of local youth and law enforcement heroes. Tickets to attend the event can be purchased online for $150. Sponsorship opportunities are also available. The event organizers also appreciate donations and silent auction items. Donations can be mailed to P.O. Box 11683, Newport Beach, CA 92658 and checks made payable to The 9-99 Foundation.

For more information, visit www.lagunapalooza.org.