3rd Annual World Homeless Day

3rd Annual World Homeless Day

Welp, today is the 3rd Annual World Homeless Day/World Homeless Action Day, and the internet is blowing up:


I’ll try to compile a list of media coverage and post it here in the next day or so.  It’s still so surreal to see your brainchild expand like this out of such tiny grassroot beginnings!  There’s a lot of talk about making it “World Homeless Action Month”, which I would love to see happen – October is also “World Mental Health Day”, and as you might imagine, there’s obviously a lot of tie-in potential there.

In any event, no rest for the wicked – now that 10/10/12 has come, tomorrow our steering group will turn around and start gearing up for 10/10/13.  Looking forward to another awesome year with you guys – all the gratitude in the world to our amazing steering group and the advocates and organizations around the world who participate and help make this come together by putting their time and energy into organizing events, in addition to their round-the-clock work on behalf of the homeless population.  And a special shout out to my WHD/WHAD co-founder and head organizer extraordinaire Jon Glackin (aka “Beat on the Streets”) who works ceaselessly and tirelessly all year long and practically never sleeps because he’s too busy thinking of new ways to promote and spread World Homeless Day – all on a voluntary, unpaid basis, as has been the case since its inception.  I love ya, doll.  *hug*

* * *

As for me, I’ve been pretty quiet, because I’ve been moving.  I’d lived at my last apartment for a year and was about to renew my lease, then the owner ended up dropping the bombshell that he was selling the property.  Like, right away.  (Turns out, it wasn’t what you’d call “up to code”.  Sigh.)  The closing date on the property meant that I had a week and a half to find a new place, but it ended up working out, as I requested and was given rental abatement and relocation assistance to make up for the last-second rush (*phew*).  I actually love the new apartment; it’s got a lot more room for Fez and I and is significantly more affordable for the amenities that it includes, though my commute to work is further.  To make up for it, I’m selling Kermit and getting a more reliable car.  So, you know, constantly trying to work my way towards the stability that I crave, but all signs are looking good at the moment  :-P

So that’s where I’ve been if you were wondering.  I’ve got a couple of events coming up in November, also, so as soon as I have exact dates and addresses nailed down, I’ll let you know which cities I’ll be dropping into  ;)

Oh, and I was on HuffPost Live on Monday!  The conversation was about homeless voting and how many of the new voter ID laws popping up across the nation are disenfranchising the homeless/poor/ethnic/veteran population.  It was an awesome group and a lovely, civil discussion.  I feel privileged to have been a part of a panel of such wonderful and hardworking advocates!

Along those lines…the U.S. Presidential Election is less than a month away.  If you’re qualified, get out there and VOTE.  This will be my first year voting (I registered last month and I’m super proud and excited to finally take part and have a say in the outcome of this election).

Upcoming SoCal Meet-n-Greets!

Upcoming SoCal Meet-n-Greets!

Born and raised in SoCal, but never saw Grauman’s Chinese Theatre before last week, with my awesome friend Jeanine.
Here I am holding Atticus Finch’s hand <3

Hey guys!  It’s last second, I know, but if you’re in SoCal, I’ll be giving a speechy-thingy tomorrow at Casa Youth Shelter’s 10th Annual Teen Summit!  It’s open to the public, although Casa prefers that if you choose to attend, you RSVP (more info on the Facebook page for the event here).  The summit begins at 9:15 a.m. and I’ll be speaking from around 11:30 a.m. – noon.

Casa is really great – They do a lot of homeless outreach and I’ve volunteered with them a few times handing out clothes/food/water to the homeless population here in Santa Ana that hangs around the Orange County Courthouse.  They totally deserve so much support and recognition.

Also, if you come to Los Al tomorrow, I can guarantee you that the Pasty Kitchen on Katella, a mile away from the event, serves the absolute best food (pasties!) you will ever taste – I grew up going there.  It’s this tiny little hole-in-the-wall family-owned place that’s a Los Al institution and is effing DELICIOUS.  It’s actually my favorite food of all time, even better than pizza.  I recommend the chicken pasty, but they also have beef and vegetarian, plus some dessert-y type stuff.  Honestly, the main reason I decided to do this event was to have an excuse to go stock up on a few pastys for the next few days (just kidding!  Sort of.  But in all seriousness, it’s super-tasty.  Try it, you’ll like it.)

Otherwise, SoCal-ites will also get a chance to swing by and say hi at the La Habra Public Library on August 19th at 2:30 p.m., where I’ll be doing a reading/Q&A!  Bring your copy and I’d be happy to sign it  :)

Lastly, I apologize profusely for the bunch of gobbledygook code or whatever at the top of my site’s pages right now…I’m as baffled as you likely are, but I’m working on figuring out what the problem is and getting it resolved quickly.  In the meantime – so sorry!  :(

Update:  Said gobbledygook code was actually caused via changes by my host server, which have now been rectified.  Whew!  So glad…that was driving me bonkers.

AOL “You’ve Got…” Video

AOL "You've Got..." Video

This has nothing to do with AOL, but J. took me to RenFaire, which is one of the awesomest things ever if you're a geek like me, and I needed an excuse to use this pic because I don't hate it ;)

Agh!  So the AOL “You’ve Got…” interview just went up.  I didn’t know it was going up today, and have not seen it yet.

I promised I’d post here when it went up, so here you go, but unfortunately I’m at work right now and cannot turn up the volume, so you get to see it before I do.  Plus, I really hate hearing my voice/seeing my face on camera, so there’s always this sort of “I can’t bear to look” feeling, so I’ll try to work myself up to it tonight when I get home.

But here you go…(my apologies for the link, I tried using the embed code but it doesn’t seem to work on WordPress):

AOL.com Video – You’ve Got Brianna Karp

Quick mistake I noticed in the description…it says I own my own home.  I don’t.  I have never owned a home yet  ;)  I rent my apartment.  You should get to see quick shots of it in the vid.  It’s a 300 square-foot studio with a small yard for Fez.  I love it and, as I mentioned briefly before, I’ve been doing my best to thrift/Craigslist/FreeCycle furnishings for it over the past 10 months.  I’m very proud that all of my furniture in my apartment, all put together, cost under $1,000 total.  The canopy bed I’m proudest of.  It was in some guy’s garage in the middle of the Mojave Desert (Apple Valley) for $100.  I later found the exact same model of bed online (Laurel Crown Furniture) for over $4K. So I’m extra-proud of that find. My awesome friends Thao and her hubby Steve put together the base for me, and my sweet and patient boyfriend spent about 8 hours helping me put up the canopy.  The bed curtains were Craigslisted Ikea curtains for $5.


So, yeah.  Just gotta brag a teensy-weensy bit.  I’m super proud of my thrifting skills.


Okiez, back to work before they fire me  ;)

“Member of the Board”

"Member of the Board"

One of the CCY kids speaking at the rally outside of the California Capitol Building in Sacramento.

Happy 4th of July, all!

Well, the speaking trips to Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Sacramento were awesome!  I met some of the warmest people…some of them even drove from really far away.  I’m so touched and honored.  In Wisconsin I spoke at several libraries, so I got to meet fellow “book people”, which feels like coming home no matter where I’m at!  In Pennsylvania I got to speak to social services and homeless services workers, particularly those who work in conjunction with the local school districts to assist homeless kids and families.

The most touching experience for me, however, was in Sacramento, speaking at the California Coalition for Youth’s Annual Conference and Rally. I spoke to, and met, some of the awesomest kids there on the planet.  Most of these kids had some really painful backstories – they had been homeless, or foster youth who had aged out of the system, or had abusive parents, or were LGBT and were kicked out…you name it, they had been there.  Some of them had already been in juvenile hall or prison.  They’d had rough starts, but here they were, getting their lives back on track and using their experiences to support others.

The morning after the conference, we rallied outside of the Capitol Building, and some of the kids told their stories and talked about how they wanted to make a difference in their communities.  Then we broke up into groups and went into the Capitol and spoke to legislators about passing several laws currently on the table that will help foster youth and the homeless.

It was one of the most amazing experiences of my life.  Period.  These kids brought tears to my eyes and every one of them made me want to be a better person.  So young, yet they want to get involved in social issues.  These kids are the future, dude.  They’re going on to huge things, you can tell.  And getting to talk one-on-one with actual legislators and policymakers was awesomeness personified.  Other than speaking with Anthony Love (the Obama cabinet member who is the Deputy Director for National Programs at the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH)…basically the guy who oversees HUD) a few months ago at a homelessness conference in Florida, I had never participated in democracy at nearly such a hands-on level, and now I want to do more.

Looks like I’ll get the chance…The California Coalition for Youth has generously invited me to become a member of their Board of Directors and this week, the nomination process was completed – I’m confirmed! This means that I will get to go to Sacramento several times a year for Board meetings and conferences and try to come up with new and innovative ways to legislate for foster and homeless youth, and talk to legislators some more and ask them to pass those bills into law…as well as lobby against laws that are detrimental to the disadvantaged.

This is probably not very official-board-member-like, but…SQUEE!!!!!  I can’t express how grateful I am for this honor.  I’ll do my absolute best to represent well.

Otherwise, you know, just truckin’ along with the 9-5 job and everything.  I’ve been booked for a few more speaking/signing tours later this year; I’ll post once I have exact dates/times/details for you.  There’s also a video coming out soon for AOL’s “You’ve Got…” series where you’ll get to see my apartment.  They sent a film crew and everything.  Poor people had to cram all this light/sound equipment in my 300-square-foot studio for three hours to film.  They were very kind and patient with me.  One of them was afraid of big dogs so I had to keep Fez far, far away.  It was an experience!

I’ve been at the apartment for nearly 11 months now.  I’m still living pretty paycheck-to-paycheck, but have done my best to furnish it over the past almost-year on a shoestring budget.  I am nothing if not the master thrifter/Craigslister  :-P  Hope you guys think it’s cute.  It’s kind of got a vintage-y cluttered bookshop air to it, I think.  I’ll post when the vid goes up.

Have a safe holiday and enjoy the fireworks!

I’m Coming North! (And Happy Fuzzy News, Yay!)

I'm Coming North!  (And Happy Fuzzy News; Yay!)

THIS is Spring in Wisconsin?!?!?! Hellz yeah, I'll take it!!!!! Image credit: Phillip Billings, fineartamerica.com

Squee; I’m so excited!  Over the next week and a half, I will be travelling to three Northern areas of the U.S. I’ve never visited before.  So if you’re in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, or Sacramento…this is your chance to come see me do a reading/speechy-thingy and/or get your copy of The Girl’s Guide to Homelessness signed (personally addressed, even!  I love writing little special notes/doodles in copies of the book.  I like to shake things up).

Dates and times are now up on the Upcoming Events page.  I’m gonna be all over the place…several Fox Cities Book Festival venues in WI (a university, a couple of libraries), speaking to an awesome-youth-changing-the-world group (California Coalition for Youth) in Sacramento and marching with them to a rally at the State Capitol, and in Pennsylvania I’ll be at the Meeting the Challenge: Educating Homeless Children conference in Harrisburg.

It’s gonna be awesome.  I am SO stoked.  Come hang out with me  :)

* * * * *

OK, a little bit of juicy news in exchange/apology for being in absentia for so long.

I get a lot of people writing very kind letters to me expressing solidarity and asking how stuff is going for me, romantically speaking.  Seeing as how, if you read the book, it could be considered to have ended on something of a bum note (depending how you look at it). I also get a lot of readers telling me their own stories of failed/dramatic/abusive relationships and betrayal.  Which actually makes me feel less alone, and less stupid overall.  Because you know what?  That’s something that’s quite common among individuals who come from abusive/fundamentalist backgrounds.  You aren’t experienced at real life, relationships, and boundaries.  You don’t know what’s considered healthy or normal.  You’re likely to fall in love with the first person (or several people) who show you the slightest modicum of interest.  You’re vulnerable to unhealthy romantic relationships, more so than most.  So all you can do is sort of learn how to do better, bit by bit.


Image Credit: QuickSprout.com

A blogger called “NimbyGirl” recently wrote a great, detailed analysis of feminism and chauvinism in The Girl’s Guide to Homelessness.  I was elated that someone GOT IT.  That she picked up on all those more subtle topics, and that the book wasn’t just about being homeless, but about trying to figure out and conquer all of these really socially advanced concepts, having come from a socially stunted background.

I really appreciated her last sentence:  ”She can do a lot better…and she will”.  THAT is exactly what I want to tell every person who has ever written me with his/her own story of love gone terribly wrong.

So this brings me to the juicy news.  I guess you could say that I’ve “done better”.

See, after the fiasco that was my last relationship, I decided not to date for a really long time.  And I stuck to my guns.  For two years, I focused on holding down my job, getting an apartment, spending time with good friends, reading a lot of books, and getting to know myself better.  Getting to the point where I felt comfortable and happy just being alone.  It was great to realize that I didn’t need to be with someone to feel complete.  Maybe I would meet someone, maybe I wouldn’t.  Either way, it was OK.  I now firmly believe that to be essential, no matter who you are.

Four months ago, I met somebody.  We’ll call him J.  I’m not going to give out his full name, so as to retain his privacy, and I probably won’t talk much or at all about our relationship on this blog again, so as to keep from jinxing our personal business, but here are the things that I can tell you:

I wasn’t looking to date.  Neither was he.  Neither of us had dated anybody in quite a while and were comfortable with that.  A mutual friend invited us and five or six other people to dinner.  It wasn’t a set up a blind date, but we sort of shyly noticed one another and ended up hitting it off.  The main thing we had in common, right off the bat, was that we were both raised Jehovah’s Witnesses, and we had both left around the same time.  He was actually a former Bethelite (volunteer at the Watchtower Society’s headquarters…tangential note here:  oh, the irony.  If my sister could see me now.  She always thought SHE would be the one to date a Bethelite, haha.  It’s a stupid prestige thing for the JWs…often titles mean a lot more to them than personalities.  You can be a terrible person, but if you’re an “elder”, “pioneer”, or “Bethelite”, the women will be racing to marry you; guaranteed).

A week later, he emailed and asked me out for coffee.  We took things slow, and are still taking them slow.  We seem to understand one another well due to our similar upbringings and share quite a few personality traits.  My experience with him has been that he is kind, patient, funny, talented, stable, and gregarious.  He is also a feminist (yay!)  Thus far, things seem to remain on an even keel…no unequal power balance, neither person is doing all of the heavy lifting, etc.  I’m increasingly feeling that this is the way things should be.

J. found out early on that I wrote a book, but at my request, he held off reading it until we got to know one another better.  I wanted him to get to know me as I am now, before having to take on all of my past baggage all at once.  When he did finally read it, and the book did not change his opinion of me, I knew that he cares about me for who I am, the good and the bad.  Sometimes I’m still nervous or insecure, due to my former experiences in personal relationships (both family and romantic).  He has been unfailingly understanding and reassuring, so the insecurity lessens day by day.  Learning to trust again, and all that.

We’ve had enough of the bigger conversations to know that we share very similar life goals as well as some of the same interests/and hobbies…though not all of them.  Which is awesome, actually.  We retain our individuality, our own circles of friends and our time to pursue our separate interests.  We hold a lot of the same positions on politics and social issues…but now all of them.  Every now and then we disagree, and I love that we can.  It’s never a big deal; we can discuss and debate this stuff amiably.

Who knows what will happen down the road.  Maybe things will work out and we’ll end up together.  Maybe not (always a possibility.  Always.  I don’t care who you are or who you’re with or how great things seem on their face).  But the best I can hope for is that if they don’t work, at least they not-work in a way that is, for lack of a better word, standard.  Healthier and less destructive.  It’s early days, but there has not been the slightest sign of any bizarrely gothic skeletons in J.’s closet, no secret girlfriends, and definitely no secret babies (we’re both child-free by choice), no bodies in the attic, etc.  Early days, but my experience with him has been, thus far that he’s unilaterally a wonderful person, and very bookish/low-key like me.  So we seem to suit one another.  And I feel that I can be reasonably secure in stating that no matter what happens with us as a couple, it will not end up with police pulling me out of a snowdrift this time  ;)

So there you have it.  If you’ve had bad romantic experiences like I have, I hope some of this helps somewhat.  Look for someone who respects you, who doesn’t manipulate you (even in small ways…what can seem like small and subtle manipulations are often the sign of much deeper problems looming on the horizon).  Look for someone who wants enough of the same things you do to base the foundation of a relationship on, but not so many similarities that you fall victim to the dreaded two-headed-person syndrome and lose all sense of individuality.

Better yet, don’t look for anyone, for a while.  Know yourself inside and out.  Realize that couplehood is nice and all, but you don’t need a man/woman to save you or make you complete.  Only you can do that.  Just have a good time for a while.  The world is an awesome and fascinating place.  Be a good person, do good things, make a difference, make new friends, get to know the friends that you already have even better.  Go to therapy and figure your shit out if that’s something you feel would be helpful.  Stop placing your expectations for happiness and a good life on romance (it’s twee and cliché to do that, anyway.  This isn’t Jerry Maguire.  Nobody’s gonna “complete you”).

Don’t expect happiness to equate to constant euphoria.  You’re still gonna have the same mundane everyday crap to deal with that we all do, and probably sometimes even more than that – more than your fair share.  But you’ll realize that you’re more practiced and better equipped at dealing with them.  You’ll know that, despite the problems we all have, you like and respect yourself.  Then you’ll be ready for a functional, healthy adult relationship if/when it does come.  And it will only add to the happiness that you already discovered was within you all along, right there for the taking.

J. and I are having a lovely time together.  He makes me so happy.  But it’s all the more meaningful because I spent a lot of time re-evaluating my definition of happiness, and then inching closer to obtaining it as an individual, before we ever met.

Serial Killer Murdering Homeless in Orange County, CA

Not at all a pleasant post today, but a necessary one:

Police believe there is a dangerous serial killer on the loose in Orange County, CA targeting homeless people. Three homeless men have already been murdered between Dec. 20 and Dec. 30.

Attacks on the homeless have been on the rise for the past few years and it’s one of the major reasons I was so keen on keeping my identity and location secret while I was initially blogging. (FYI, all three murders took place extremely close to the area I was staying. Like, within a mile or two close. One in a public shopping center.  This is my home turf, people.)

If you’re homeless anywhere, but particularly in Orange County right now, WATCH YOUR BACK.  Be aware of your surroundings.  Try not to be anywhere isolated, especially at night.  Look over this list of safety/survival tips that I posted a couple of years back. Be prepared.  This sick, twisted monster fuck is out there and has not yet been caught and will probably be looking to strike again.  Even if they do catch him, there’s always more out there like him, and homeless people are easy prey – they’re vulnerable and often it’s erroneously assumed that nobody will miss them.  Take care of yourself.

* * * * *

Ugh.  Palate cleanser:

The Girl’s Guide to Homelessness just came out in Australia and New Zealand, and I’ve already received some encouraging emails from very awesome locals.  Australia Associated Press put out a super-lovely article yesterday, also. Gonna be doing several upcoming interviews there, so I’ll post when I know the dates/times (for radio and TV) or when print interviews are released.  Thank you to everybody Down Under for your support and kind words  :)

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays!

Image Credit: edmontonatheists.ca

I wish all of you guys and gals Seasons Greetings, Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Festive Kwanzaa, Pleasant Winter Solstice, or whatever else you do/do not celebrate (dude, I’m just happy to have a few days off work to relax and unwind).  Mostly I just hope that your holiday is filled with happiness and joy and that you forget your troubles for a while  :)

I saw this excellent 60 Minutes story that I would like to share with you.  I loved how brave and articulate the homeless children profiled in this story are.  I hope they have a lovely holiday as well.  I read in an update that following the story, they were offered a full four-year scholarship and that Arielle Metzger wants to be a child-advocacy attorney when she grows up, so I have a feeling their luck is changing.  *Fingers crossed*  In summation, though, these kids kick ARSE.

Read the story and watch the segment here:  Hard Times Generation:  Families Living in Cars

Also, two tiny shameless plugs:

1)  The tGGtH book is coming out in Australia in January!!!  If you’re an Australian reader, look for me on Sunrise with Mel and Kochie on Monday, January 9th (via satellite).  I’m really excited because I’ve seen them on The Chaser’s War on Everything.  I will also be doing some print and radio.  I hope they send me to Oz one day.  I’ve never been, but I can already tell it would be one of my favorite places on Earth.  I want to swim with whale sharks and poke wombats with sticks and such things  ;)

2) Library Journal selected The Girl’s Guide to Homelessness as one of it’s Best Books of 2011, in the Memoir category.  I can’t tell you how honored and humbled I am to be listed among such a slew of brilliant and talented authors, especially Margaux Fragoso (whom I pretty much idolize and met at ALA when we shared time on a literary panel…she was kind enough to sign my copy of her book and put up with my wide-eyed author worship) and Andre Dubus III (whom I’ve never met, but come on, he wrote House of Sand and Fog! That’s pretty much all you gotta say, right?)  Read their books.  Seriously.  Doooooo it.

Have a wonderful holiday and the happiest of New Years, foks  :)

Girls Think Tank Community Picnic!

Girls Think Tank Community Picnic!

Girls Think Tank Founders. Image Credit: GirlsThinkTank.org


I am in San Diego right now because I will be speaking at the Girls Think Tank Community Picnic tomorrow (Oct. 15), which will be taking place in Balboa Park from noon to 4:00 p.m.  I’d love to meet you, talk with you, and/or sign a copy of your book (there will be a few copies available for purchase, as well, I believe…like 20 or something).  There will be several homeless services orgs from the San Diego community in attendance, and I’m told that Occupy San Diego may be in the park as well, so this should be very interesting.  One of Girls Think Tank’s major focuses is accessible water and sanitation for all homeless people (the United Nations has declared these basic human rights).  I’m pretty sure that’s something everybody can get behind.

Did a quick segment today on San Diego Living Channel 6 with the very kind and sweet Renee Koch about the picnic tomorrow and also had the privilege to have a phone chat with an über-lovely ladies’ book club in the Los Alamitos/Seal Beach area, which are some of my old stomping grounds because that’s where my mom grew up and we spent a lot of time there while I was a kid.

And then on Sunday (Oct. 16) I’ll be doing a reading/signing/Q&A at the Katie Wheeler Public Library in Irvine at 2:30 p.m., 13109 Old Myford Rd., Irvine, CA  92602.  If you’re in Orange County and you’ve never been to this library, you seriously need to go.  It is fucking adorable.  In this warm, sweet little historic building.  The first time I ever went in there was to drop off some postcards for a South Coast Repertory show, and I did not want to leave (OK, I never want to leave libraries, but this one had an extra-charming je ne sais quois).

I had the absolute best time at the Tustin Public Library reading last week – both the staff and the attendees were just some of the warmest, kindest people I’ve ever encountered.  I’m discovering just how much I love “book people” and want to get to know more of them because they’re among the easiest people for me to relate to and we have endless topics of conversation available once we get on the subject of reading, so I’m grateful for the opportunity to encounter so many lately.  Looking forward to repeating the experience at Katie Wheeler Library.

Quick PSA:  Support your local library, people!  I mean, I know there’s Kindles or Nooks or whatever (still can’t bring myself to buy one) but libraries serve such an important purpose and function in communities far beyond what a Kindle could ever offer me, that I don’t want to live in a world where libraries and used/indie bookstores have become obsolete – and my agent will probably strangle me for saying this (very politely though, as he’s a total sweetheart), because I think I might actually get a higher royalty percentage off of e-books than hard copies…but fuck it, I don’t care.  (*obligatory backpedal* Love you, Chris Schelling.  Please don’t ever leave me).

Next time you’re in a library, tell the librarian that he/she rocks and is appreciated.  Because these are seriously awesome people doing seriously awesome work.

* * * * *

That’s about it for now.  Here is a photo of a mastiff being used as a footrest:


Sleep, my minion.

Virgin Islands Officially Declares 10-10 Homeless Day!

Virgin Islands Officially Declares 10-10 Homeless Day!

First Lady Cecile DeJongh distributes food and Tiny Tokens of Hope in St. John.

Just a quickie post…the Virgin Islands officially declared 10/10 “V.I. Homeless Day”, in recognition of and solidarity with World Homeless Day!


OK, gotta admit, I’m wiping away a tiny tear.  So, so proud of how far this has spread.  I know I’ve said it before, but there it is.

Thanks to Governor John deJongh Jr. and First Lady Cecile deJongh for making my day.

It’s World Homeless Day!

Today is the 2nd Annual World Homeless Day/World Homeless Action Day.  We’re really proud of what we’ve accomplished.

(Please consider using the hashtag #morethanwords today on Twitter to help get WHAD trending.)

As a co-founder, it’s weird (and cool!) to see how far the day has spread and the ingeniously creative ways so many homeless services organizations are taking the concept and running with it, along with the endorsement of celebs such as Crystal Bowersox, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim All-Star outfielder Vernon Wells, and John Mellencamp (for his second year in a row – much thanks for his support!)  Check out some of the coverage and participation WHAD is getting (will be adding here throughout the day):