Hailed by Surfing Magazine as the “party of the year,” Billabong pulled out all the stops for their 6th annual “Design For Humanity” event. Attendees partied with a purpose, with a sold out crowd and over $111,000 in ticket sales benefiting the Chipotle Cultivate Foundation, an organization dedicated to a sustainable and healthful food future. The event drew a star-studded crowd of musicians, actors, athletes and surf industry executives all on the crowded streets of the famed Paramount Studio’s “NY Street” backlot. The atmosphere was electric with four bands taking three stages throughout the night.
The big crowd pleaser — Billabong Bikini Runway Show. Photo: Surf Channel/Shannon Q
The night kicked off with Billabong’s art auction celebrating such artists as Andy Davis, Maya Hayuk, John Antoski, Justin Krietemeyer and Lisa Solberg to name a few. The theme for the year, ‘UNLEARN | RELEARN,’ drew inspiration from reinventing technology, food and art. Artists used vibrant colors and 3D installations to capture a modern and bright perspective on the future. The party continued on the streets of New York for an all out block party featuring organic food trucks, street side art galleries, DJ dance sessions and a runway fashion show highlighting Billabong’s 2013 swimwear campaign. Attendees rubbed shoulders with a standout crowd of athletes including Kelly Slater, Keala Kennelly, Jack Freestone, Taj Burrow, Shaun White, Granger Larson, Laura Enever, Courtney Conlogue and Eero Niemela.
Although Las Vegas based band Imagine Dragons formed in 2009 and have yet to release a full-length album, it didn’t stop the crowd from chanting along to every lyric. Front man Dan Reynolds expressed his appreciation to the crowd, noting the journey the band has endured to get to where they are—sleepless nights and a diet of “bean and cheese burritos and Taco Bell everyday.” Relatively new to the mainstream music scene, Imagine Dragons has enjoyed commercial success with the anthem, “It’s Time”. Imagine Dragons performed in near perfection with Reynolds delivering a stirring vocal performance.
Around the block, guests rocked out to “Anna Sun” by Cincinnati-based quartet Walk The Moon. Their youthful music was a highlight of the night as the synthy beat of their music launched a collective chorus of hand clapping amongst the audience.
Massive crowds lined the stage to catch a glimpse of The Lumineers before they embark on a nationwide tour. The folk-rock trio strummed on guitars and banjos as the crowd swayed back and forth. Front man Wesley Schultz soulfully sang such crowd favorites as “Ho Hey” and “Flowers In Your Hair”. There was no denying that a full on block party was in effect; strangers and friends alike smiling, dancing and enjoying a night filled with fashion, art and music. As the night drew to an end and partygoers danced along the streets of Hollywood to the beat of The Joy Formidable, everyone was in high spirits and I couldn’t help but think that they’d all be back for more. Until next year!