Women’s Herstory Month: Honoring Lupita- Woman of Steel

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A strong Mujer is one that always thinks about others, her actions are honest and genuine. She always sacrifices for righteousness even on her weakest moments without thinking about recognition; sees the good in people and believes she can change the world. This defines a strong Chingona Mujer and I am honored to kick off Women’s Herstory Month 2016 with our very own Woman of Steel: Lupita Garcia Founder of Fuck Cancer Crew. She deserves recognition for all her hard work in the community; not only as an advocate for any victim of this monstrous illness but also for being such an amazing individual with whom we can all rely on any time any place.

Lupita is consistently organizing fundraisers, benefits concerts and always coming up with new ideas to help others, especially Cancer victims. And as a result, the Graffiti community as well as many artists that love and support her have also joined forces with her and her battle with Cancer. On August 9, 2014, the Graff Lab and Frame DTK organized a Graffiti party “Fuck Cancer” fundraiser to help Lupita with her treatment expenses.  This is just one of the many times we have all joined with her treatment expenses.  This is just one of the many times we have all joined together to honor Lupita over the years.

She is not the type of woman who wants her battle with Cancer make her appear weak or live in self-pity; instead, she holds herself strong as the great Woman of Steel she is. Her mission is for others to have a good time and celebrate life to the fullest while she makes events such as “Dancing the Cancer Away” Benefits concert she held on November 14-15, 2015. During the holidays, her spirit lights even brighter; as she hosts her annual Haunted House in her community to bring scares and laughs to everyone during her favorite Halloween festivities with not only Haunted Houses but also awesome traditions of Pumpkin Carving Contests as the one she held on Halloween 2014.

She gives the public the opportunity to genuinely want to help her as much as she wants to help others. I have known Lupita for a few years now and I have had the honor to work with her in various art and community events and I must say that it is always a pleasure to be in her presence. I have never met a woman who approaches life in such a strong Chingona way as she does! No pity parties here. For this and for an end less list of good deeds she has done for Cancer victims, children and her Graffiti community; she has been nominated as one of our Strong Inspiring Woman that over the years she continuously supports her community. And I am sure we will see many more years filled with adventurous moments with Lupita, organizing benefit shows and selling her brand merchandise everywhere. Her statement is as true as it gets, Fuck Cancer! She has established not only a brand but a statement to live for herself. She has given this gift to hundreds of victims and supporters over the years as well. She is an inspiration to many of us and we all got her back on anything she plans to do to make this world a better place.

Much Love & Respect,

Monica Smiles Tobon

Here are some links to help support our Woman of Steel!

http://gngscreenprinting.bigcartel.com/

http://relay.acsevents.org/site/TR?fr_id=74291&pg=personal&px=38513095&utm_campaign=rfl_2016&utm_source=cd&utm_medium=email&utm_content=MA_sharemyteampage&s_src=boundlessfundraising&s_subsrc=bfAphFbTpMypg

 

LUPITA’S STORY:

Here’s my story for those asking:

My name is Lupita Garcia a mommy to 3 beautiful kids (JR 19, Bella 11, and Ari 20) and a wife to (Ray Garcia). They are not only my life support but also my happiness and reason for wanting to fight to live. Without them I don’t think id survive this battle. For what now seems like a lifetime (going on yrs) I’ve been battling cancer. I’ve had cancer in my breasts, cervical cancer, ovarian cancer the most recent diagnosis is stomach cancer that has metastasized. This journey with cancer has been the hardest, most chaotic and heart breaking experience of my life. Still, despite so much tragedy, loss and almost giving in I was able to find myself. In doing so i found the person I was meant to be. Looking back at that moment I realize that I was walking down a dark path I was allowing this cancer to consume in more ways than one. I’ve heard people say that in darkness we either find ourselves or lose ourselves. I was lucky to be able to experience both sides. I needed to lose myself in order to find the new me. What lead to my new self is my end but for now I call it my salvation. Cancer, yes the c word the monster the horrible disease that devastates and kills, I call my salvation. Don’t get me wrong it is my worst enemy I HATE CANCER. Still somehow my cancer journey has been one that has changed me and my outlook on MY LIFE. To make it that much sweeter for me CANCER brought my family closer together and has made us all more compassionate human beings. This is what I’ve learned to live is not just breathing or getting through another day. To live is to know love happiness and most of all fulfillment. My mind and heart are in sync and for the first time in a long time I can see clearly. Every day I am alive is a blessing, it’s a gift. So every day that I get to wake up will be a day that I share my story and give someone a reason to smile. It’s my responsibility to give back and to show others that there is still hope for us. One person at a time one small act of kindness goes a long way. My family and I have found a way to fight cancer together and help those that are struggling get thru a rough patch. Together we are a stronger force and it’s the best feeling.
There is nothing in this world I want more than to be cancer free. I guess it’s not in my cards not yet anyway. My hubby once said to me cancer is the worst thing to happen to us but it has also been the best thing. It’s an unexpected blessing. I didn’t get what he meant not until I had my moment of clarity with this monster. You may understand this next statement or not. I am to some point grateful that CANCER is a part of me. I can’t say that I would have preferred to have found my purpose and myself another way. There’s a saying I can relate to now: To appreciate what you have you must suffer for it. Cancer has made me suffer its broken me more than once. It has caused the most damage to not just my life but those close to me. We’ve had to endure things that no one should ever have to. ALL THIS STILL WONT CHANGE HOW I FEEL ABOUT MY CANCER JOURNEY. I CAN ACTUALLY SAY I’M GRATEFUL THAT I WAS DAMMED WITH CANCER. I’VE MET SO MANY PEOPLE, DONE AMAZING THINGS, EXPERIENCED THINGS, LEARNED AND HAVE BECOME SOMEONE THAT PEOPLE LOOK UP TOO BECAUSE OF CANCER. THE MONSTER THAT INVADED MY BODY WITHOUT PERMISSION OR INVITE IS NOW A VIP HOLDER, FOR THE MEANTIME.

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Crewest- La Bulla’s Art Exhibit Curator

Exodus Events execute mind-blowing art exhibits, and for all of us that have attended their shows know that from the moment we walk into the art space; we are taken into a mesmerizing journey. With that being said, I am really excited that Man One founder of Crewest will be this year’s La Bulla’s Art Curator!

All of us in the Graffiti and Art community know all the hard work Man One has done over the years, as well as how many artists he helped while Crewest gallery was up and running in its full glory. I still remember the first time I went during an Art walk and went to hang out at his gallery; nothing but good times and great people I met there. For sure we can all expect an awesome art exhibit; the list of fellow friends and other talented artists are bringing their best game for this night!

Although many attend to be a part of a fun art loving-music dancing night, you are also contributing profits to fund programs provided to by Plaza de la Raza. Aside to coming to support this awesome event, I ask all of you to also support another great cause that many have not had the chance to be a part of. Antonio Pelayo and I were discussing this evening the heart breaking news of Man One’s wife Laura Poli being diagnosed with Cancer. So many people are being affected by this monstrous disease and it is devastating to hear this news. We want Man One and his family to know we are all praying for strength and for best results on her treatments that will cure her. Laura Poli’s family has set up a Go Fund Me page to help assist with her treatment costs and it is our responsibility as a community to help a family that has given so much to the Arts community for decades.

Please click on the link below and lets help them reach their goal. Share with your friends and family her link as well.

https://www.gofundme.com/hope-for-our-laura

Much Love and Respect,

Monica Smiles Tobon

laura poli

 

 

La Bulla 2016- Lucha Libre Celebration Coming Soon!

We have all been waiting for our official date of gathering with Lucha Libre fanatics and art lovers celebrating an evening of our enriched Cultura Mexicana and lowriders in the city of Angels. Exodus is kicking off this year with La Bulla-A Lucha Libre Experience on Saturday, April 30, 2016 at legendary Plaza de la Raza and as you know this is a 21 and over experience so get ready to party.

Last year I attended La Bulla; I had such a mas firme que wow time, it was more of a reunion with all my friends exhibiting their work in the art gallery to DJ’n to the best tunes; keeping us ladies on the dance floor. Cannot wait to see what La Bulla will bring this year, super excited to see Crewest Gallery as curator for this year. The list of artists is already setting the bar high for us art lovers and collectors; a lot of our friends are part of this exhibit so you know it is going to be a dope night. Lets not forget the Lucha Libre matches on the ring but most importantly; the live performances while this evening evolves to its masterpiece just like it did for me last year.

See you all there, I will be covering this awesome event and bring the most real stories and highlights with pictures of what will go down this night! So mark your calendars and come hang out with us at La Bulla- at Plaza de la Raza which is located in Lincoln Heights.

To purchase tickets for this soon to be sold out event, just click on the link below:

http://www.eventbrite.com/e/la-bulla-tickets-20772205225

Much Love & Respect,

Monica Smiles Tobon

12834850_10208639816290635_1409550552_n12784463_10208639816330636_1106852340_nLA BULLA OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE

La Bulla is back! This event is anticipated to be epic and will be hosted by the stunning model Yasmin Ferrada and the amazing and versatile actor, Richard Montoya. La Bulla will take place in the heart of Los Angeles at the famous Plaza De La Raza on Saturday, April 30th, 2016, from 7:00 PM to 1:00 AM. This event will showcase some of LA’s talented artists and musicians and will feature Lucha Libre films. But the highlight of the evening will be the live Lucha Libre matches.

La Bulla is brought to you by Exodus Events’, their mission is to create a new type of cultural experience specializing in arts, live entertainment, concerts, community outreach and fundraising. Last year’s successful event raised over $10,000 which benefited Plaza De la Raza’s art program. La Bulla gained tremendous support from the community including LA Councilman Gil Cedillo, film actors Sergio Arau, Aurelio Bocanegra, and Tom Kenny (voice Sponge Bob.)

The merging of art, music and live Lucha Libre has captured the interest of many Angelinos; making it one of the most popular cultural events in Los Angeles.

WHAT TO EXPECT:

– Vintage car exhibit curated by Memo Ortega

-Live Lucha Libre matches curated by Masked Republic

-Art exhibit curated by Man One & Crewest

-Lucha Libre screenings by Hola Mexico Film Festival

-Live music by El Conjunto Nueva Ola

– DJ set by DJ Sloe Poke.

-Face painting

El Conjunto Nueva Ola will be rocking the house. A band who hailed from Mexico City who will definitely get you off your chair to groove with their iconic sounds of cumbia, new wave, rock and disco. El Conjunto Nueva Ola has been making waves throughout the music scene sharing the stage with legendary Latin musicians and bands such as Café Tacvba, Aleks Syntek, Belanova, Los Tigres Del Norte and the late Jenni Rivera. Their unique style has attracted the attention of many with their signature Lucha Libre Masks and Cumbia style. One can expect a spectacular performance full of energy, dancing, and fun.

DJ Sloe Poke is one of LA’s best DJ who can spin several genres of music. He can mix a Salsa classic like Joe Arroyo’s “Rebelion” with Celso Pina’s Sonidero hit, “Cumbia Sobre El Rio,” then follow those songs with Thalia’s poppy, “Piel Morena” and Frankie Cutlass’ club fave, “Puerto Rico,” making it all flow together. His diverse taste of music within culture and age has given him the edge to surpass other DJ’s in the game.

 

GENERAL INFORMATION:

-21 and over To avoid the hassle of longer lines, please go to http://www.labulla.eventbrite.com and purchase tickets now Online sales:

-Early bird special: $15 (ends March 31, 2016)

-General admission: $25 (ends April 29, 2016)

-Tickets at the door will be $30

-Location: Plaza de la Raza 3540 N. Mission Rd., Los Angeles CA 90031

-Like us / follow us on : Facebook: @Exodus Events o Instagram: @exodus_events o Twitter: @exodusprod o Hashtag: #LaBulla #ExodusEvents

About Exodus Events:

Antonio Pelayo and Steve Guerrero have combined their creative and event planning talents to create Exodus Events, a full service event production company headquartered in Los Angeles.

About Plaza de la Raza:

Plaza de la Raza is a 501 © non-profit organization that provides after school programs and cultural events in the performing and visual arts for children, teens and families.