Everyone is invited to start the year big at the eighth annual Big Hair Ball– A Landmark Vision on Jan. 25 at Grandover Resort in Greensboro, presented by the Guild and the Junior Guild of Family Service of Greensboro. Indira Lindsay Roberts, executive director of the Big Hair Ball and past president of the Guild of Family Service of Greensboro, encourages everyone who wants to attend to go online and get their tickets because last year’s event sold out.

Roberts said that Honorary Chair Dr. Lenny Peters would be the speaker and Natosha Brooks, owner of the Birthing Movement, would be the emcee of the evening.

Roberts said this one-of-a-kind fundraiser includes a cocktail reception at 7 p.m., followed by a runway fashion show featuring “big hairdos and outré outfits” created by local and student designers moving to techno music and the show starts at 8 p.m. She said that the assigned corporate or individual sponsor inspires each model’s outfit. Roberts said there would be a raffle and an awards ceremony afterward. She said there would be awards given in fashion for Best Brand Student Designer, Best Brand Local Designer, Most Creative Student Designer, Most Creative Local Designer, Best Overall Student Designer, Best Overall Local Designer, Best Hair, Best Make-up and Best Overall Look for the whole ensemble.

Roberts said that the 51 models are members of the Junior Guild of Family Service of Greensboro (aka the little girl guild for grades 10-12) and the Guild (aka the big girl guild for young adults). She said to be on the runway, you have to earn it and that it involves many hours of volunteer work for Family Service of Greensboro.

Roberts, who also has a full-time job as a remote Regional Manager of Oncology and Reproductive Health/Molecular Genetics for Invitae Biotechnology, volunteers all of her hours as executive director of the Big Hair Ball (in production all year) along with everyone else that volunteers. She said that even the local professional hairstylists and make-up artists (some are students), also volunteer their time. The fashion designers are students from Weaver Academy, A&T University and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

She said that Magz King introduced the idea and was over the event for three years. In 2014, Roberts came onboard as it really began taking off. She said it started at the Elm Street Center until it shut down, and then in 2019, they moved to the Leonard J. Kaplan Center for Wellness at UNCG. This year, it would take place at Grandover Resort and would be showcased at the Greensboro Coliseum in 2021.

Roberts said the event supports local programs of Family Service of the Piedmont, the largest private nonprofit agency of its kind in Guilford County, serving over 19,000 children and adults each year needing help with domestic violence, child abuse, mental health and financial stability.

Last year’s Big Hair Ball raised more than $315,000, with over 1,100 people in attendance. This money helps support Family Service of the Piedmont’s vision of “building safe and healthy families and communities” with their mission to “empower individuals and families to restore hope, achieve stability and thrive through quality support services, advocacy and education.”

Roberts said the best way to get a seat is to sign up as a sponsor online, as there would be no general admission tickets sold. Sponsorship levels include: Vogue, Red Carpet, Runway, WOW, Cashmere, Velvet, Producer Couple, to Producer Single, along with any other amounts may be made online as a one-time, weekly, bi-weekly, monthly or yearly donation.

Roberts said that the top sponsors receive VIP seating, and all sponsors, even the ones with Single Production donations will be recognized on event materials, in Family Service’s newsletter (mailed to 5,000 individuals), businesses and organizations throughout Guilford County, and on the Guild and Family Service websites.

Raffle tickets are $25 each or five for $100, and you do not need to be present to win. You can choose from four drawings that include a Marriott’s St. Kitts Beach Club Getaway from July 25 – Aug. 1, with a two-bedroom ocean side villa, a $1,000 value (airfare is included), and a Linda Richards Luxury fur-trimmed wrap, each donated anonymously. There is also a 14-karat white gold sapphire and diamond ring, valued at $6,000 (donated by State St. Jewelers, who will provide complimentary sizing of the ring to the winner), and an 18-karat white gold diamond stud earrings in 18-karat white gold, valued at $5,000, also donated by State St. Jewelers.

She said that for the Big Hair Ball sponsors, a limited number of overnight rooms and suites at Grandover Resort would be available at reduced rates (20% off regular rate) on the night of the event.

“Expect to be dazzled and wowed,” Roberts said about the 2020 Big Hair Ball. “Expect to be blown away as each year raises expectations! There is not another fundraiser like it in this country. We are doing some amazing things and have raised a lot of money to help build a community of healthy and safe families.”

TERRY RADER is a freelance writer/editorial/content/copy, creative consultant/branding strategist, communications outreach messenger, poet and emerging singer/songwriter.

Wanna go?

Big Hair Ball, Jan. 25, from 7-11 p.m. at Grandover Resort, 1000 Club Rd., Greensboro, tickets.

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