The Rapidian

Teen drop-in center to celebrate community involvement, youth helped with first GR Lip Sync Battle

In honor of their first anniversary, Headquarters (HQ) will be holding a lip sync battle at Celebration Cinema North, at Knapps Corner. The event, a fundraiser for the organization, includes emcee DJ Adrian Butler and "ringbeards" Beardcore and friends announcing contestants wrestling match style.
Cutting the one year birthday cake at HQ

Cutting the one year birthday cake at HQ /Courtesy of HQ

Underwriting support from:
Ribbon cutting at HQ, one year ago

Ribbon cutting at HQ, one year ago /Courtesy of HQ

Headquarters (HQ), a drop-in center for homeless teens on State Street in Grand Rapids, is celebrating its one year anniversary with GR Lip Sync Battle at Celebration Cinema North. HQ has invited local industries to battle against each other with “legendary performances for a good cause” on December 1, 2015.

“We wanted our staff to have a night where they could just celebrate together. And so many people have supported HQ, whether it’s $5 or when a group threw a Mardi Bra party, where the cost to get into the party was bring a bra, underwear, or feminine hygiene product and all of that got donated to the young women at HQ. So the community’s just as excited to have a chance to have fun and do something beneficial for HQ as well,” says HQ Chair of the Board, Andy Soper.

Each competitor is working to raise $2000 and is competing in a category such as Style, The Brand, The 4th Estate, and People Helping People. For example, Tim Ruff from Plaidvent will battle Matt Sova from A.K. Rikk’s in the Style category, while Todd Chance from MLIVE will battle Mike at Night from WSNX in The 4th Estate category. Other performers include Amy Kibler from Oak Tree OperationsBrian Burch from Burch PartnersApril Hadley from Grand Rapids Center for MindfulnessKirk Eklund from AmbroseRachel Mars from Founders Brewery, Abram Sudan from Long Road DistilleryRick Treur for Calvin College, and Peter Boumgarden for Hope College.

Local DJ Adrian Butler will be emceeing the event, while Jeremy Rush of Beardcore and friends will be the “ringbeards” announcing contestants with big placards, World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) style.

“I have a WWE type belt for the winner, too,” enthuses Soper.

The ultimate goal for the night is to celebrate the successes of the first year and grow the network of support for HQ. Soper notes that the youth will be doing their own lip sync battle on December 4 and just want to have fun.

“At the end of the day people want to know they’re connected and having fun, so what better way than drawing a bunch of people from a bunch of different backgrounds? And the competitors are cut throat. Everyone’s being very good-natured about it,” jokes Soper.

“We want to make GR actually a space where people know that they fit. If we’re teaching kids that this is where we start, that you belong here, it makes it incredibly rough when they head out into the community and that’s not the case there," says Soper. "We want youth to move from feeling like they belong at HQ to actually being agents of safety, and people who know how to create community and safety for people around them.”

Door open at 7 p.m., and the show begins at 7:30 p.m. Founder’s beer and cocktails from Long Road Distillery will be available as well as pizza from the newly opened Oscar’s Pizza Express, popcorn, and other snacks. Tickets can be purchased through the GR Lip Sync Battle website. More information about HQ can be found here.

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