Words and images by Joey Phoenix
For more than a year, Salem, MA-based actor and cosplayer Christine Madruga of Ice Queen Cosplay has been performing as Elsa, from the iconic Disney movie Frozen, at events, birthday parties, and in parades. In addition to these activities, she started hosting her own Frozen-inspired tea parties in Salem's Crown and Shield Hall a few months ago, which helped her catch the attention of the owners of Boston's Frost Ice Loft above Faneuil Hall. With the help of some friends – her husband Josh Madruga (Kristoff) and Breanna (Anna) Salem's Elsa has been hosting tea parties in this unique space for Frozen fans of all ages.
This past Sunday, I got to tag along on this epic adventure. Temperatures outside were topping out at 92 degrees, but inside the ice bar, it was a balmy 16 degrees. The tea party itself took place in Frost Ice Loft's private event space, a 2,600 sq. foot climate controlled room overlooking Quincy Market.
During these tea parties, dozens of tiny humans dressed up in their finest Anna, Elsa, Olaf, and Kristoff costumes, nibble on pocorn and confectionaries, make arts and crafts, and interact with Christine and crew during meet and greets, story time, and sing-a-longs. The kids also got a chance to have their pictures taken with Elsa, Anna, and Kristoff in the "Ice Palace" at the end of the event.
Elsa's next Frozen Tea Party at the Ice Loft takes place on August 23. You can buy tickets Here. To find out more about Salem's Elsa, or book her for your next event, you can follow her on Facebook or check out her website at www.icequeencosplay.webs.com.
Photos and Words by Joey Phoenix
Incredible things are happening in Lynn, MA, and many of them are happening at Raw Art Works. On Saturday May 9, 2015, the crew from Raw threw one of the best parties yet this year - BASH: pARTy with a purpose, a color and light-infused event brimming with excitement and packed to the rafters with people who not only adored art, but also wanted to buy it.
Yet, Raw Art Works isn’t your typical gallery space. Instead, it’s a fully integrated organization that works to provide opportunities for the talented youth in Lynn, where otherwise opportunities wouldn’t be available. They provide everything from mentorship and art classes to SAT prep, career planning and more. When a kid becomes a Raw member, they become part of a community that will help and support them through high school, college, and beyond. It’s a full package, one that’s making a dynamic difference here on the North Shore.
A fully sold-out event, more than 500 people filtered through the doors of Raw’s Central Square Headquarters for the party. The walls were lined with artwork, created by the organization’s current members and alumni, for sale in both the silent and live auctions. There was also food (including fondue!), drinks, and a live band to encourage spontaneous dancing, which didn’t take long to catch. However, this year’s BASH, was more than just a party. It was also part of a much larger goal, serving as final puzzle piece in a campaign to make Raw programming even more integrative and life-changing than it already is.
Click here to find out more about Raw’s exciting future.
About RAW Art Works
Our kids tell us that it doesn’t matter if you are 7 or 17. When you walk into RAW for the first time, there is one response: I want to belong here. We create a culture where every artist feels welcomed, connected, and committed to our community. RAW is there for kids when they struggle with a piece of art or a piece of their lives.
Using a wide range of media from paint to film, fabric to found objects, kids create art that cannot be ignored because of its quality and content. Their art speaks. It reveals a meaningful part of them that needs to be seen and heard, without being judged.