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St. Croix Bringing In the New Year With Soap Stars

Dec. 10,2005 – Babe and Jamie from the Soap Opera All My Children will be celebrating New Year's Eve on St. Croix this year. The daytime stars will be the guests of honor at "Shades of White," a Dec. 31st holiday gala to benefit the Grove Place Weed and Seed program. Other stars from the popular soap will also be in attendance.
The announcement was made on Friday at a press conference at the Police Operations and Administrative Services Building in Frederiksted. Trevor Julian, St. Croix native and CEO of Uptown Model Management, a New York based agency, is heading up the event which will be held at the Carambola Beach Resort. "It's going to be a classy event," Julian said adding that partygoers should wear their best "shades of white" holiday attire.
Julian and Jason Gardner, another St. Croix native, opened the modeling agency three years ago. Julian, who has a degree in political science, said his love for art, fashion and entertainment led him to this venture and his creativity expanded the business to representing actors and doing event planning. Julian said being on the inside of the business is much different then looking at it from the outside, but the company has built up an impressive clientele. Some of the people and businesses the agency represents are Ebony Faith of Tyra Banks' America's Top Model and the face of the 2004 Essence Music Festival, Sean John, Diane Von Furstenberg, Def Jam University and Old Navy.
Alexia Havens, who plays Babe and Justin Bruening, who plays Jamie, visited St. Thomas early in the year. Julian said they were so impressed with the island that when they decided to get married in June they asked Julian to make the arrangements for them to tie the knot in St. John. "We made all the plans for the wedding," Julian said.
Julian said although celebrities get paid to "mix and mingle" Havens and Bruening are taking care of their own expenses for the gala. "They consider themselves honorary Virgin Islanders," Julian said. "They have conch shells in their home."
In addition to the soap stars, actor Anthony Mackie from "Million Dollar Baby" and Spike Lee's "She Hate Me" will attend the event. Kimora Lee Simmonds will distribute special gift bags to the ladies courtesy of Baby Phat
The event will benefit the Weed and Seed Program, which is part of the V.I. Police Department's youth programs and funded by the Law Enforcement Planning Commission. The funding for the program has "dried up" according to program director Raymond Williams. Denise Lewis, the other director of the program was also present. The program operated on an annual budget of $250,000, providing after school programs to youth and adults in the Grove Place community.
"The funding has dried up, but our program will never dry up," vowed Williams.
"Our social programs are in jeopardy," Elton Lewis, V.I. police commissioner said. "The VIPD is going to step up to the plate and support your endeavor." The commissioner commended Julian for his "steadfast commitment to the program."
Julian said he does not expect the gala to raise the entire $250,00, but looking at the level of donations collected in the territory for the Katrina relief funds,
It's not impossible," he said.
Julian said his involvement in youth programs when he was growing up motivated him to give back to the community. "I know what a tremendous impact the attention youth get at an after-school program can have," Julian said. He urged the community come together and attend the New Year's Eve event. "Let's embrace each other and party with a purpose."
The event starts at 8 p.m. with free cocktails until 9 p.m. Dinner is 9 to 11 p.m. and breakfast is served from 4 to 6 a.m. Music is by P'your Passion Band. Tickets are $85 per person and $150 for a couple. Ticket outlets are Hillarie's Beauty Spot, Urban Threadz in St. Croix and St. Thomas, Eccentric Shoe Boutique in St. Croix and St. Thomas and deMenshan in the Frederiksted Mall.
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