.@WTM_London 2015 Opening Day Huge Success! #WTM15 #Travel #TravelTrends

WTM 2015 SD 151102-113342-2

#JDVTravel's coverage of the stunning @CostaCruises #CostaLuminosa while docked @PortofLA

By Joy A. Kennelly

#‎JDVTravel‬ was privileged to be included in a very special tour and dinner aboard the stunning Costa Luminosa recently as it docked in the Port of Los Angeles during their "Round the World" cruise layover.

For some reason I thought it was a simple harbor cruise aboard a small boat, and was blown away by the immense size of this majestic cruise liner upon arrival. 


I had invited my friend and JDV Travel member, Maria LoBosco, to join me and we thoroughly enjoyed the tour and dinner.



We also enjoyed meeting many members of the Costa Cruise family including the Captain of Costa Luminosa, two other executive members and our very own San Pedro Visitors and Convention Bureau representative.


If you want to see more pictures from our tour and delicious dinner from this wonderful evening, please join us over at our Facebook Fan Page here:

Part I of Costa Luminosa Tour https://www.facebook.com/JoysTravelAdventures/posts/851059001681489

Part II Costa Luminosa Dinner and Tour http://on.fb.me/1jD52AX


#JDVTravel at #StyleFashionWeekLA was a blast @MalanBreton's #fashion show.

By Joy A. Kennelly

Part of the fun of attending Style Fashion Week LA is seeing what all the attendees are wearing to highlight their fashion style and also bumping into old friends I generally only see at events. Here's me and Rocco of Fashion News Live after the show.

Joy Kennelly & Rocco
Rocco of Fashion News Live with Joy

It was fun to attend Malan Breton's Asian-inspired fashion show as it opened Style Fashion Week LA with a very distinctive flavor which included live music, a mini-doc, and interesting couture fashions designed from brocade in bright colors and also very soft colors.

Here's a few pix to entice you to click over to our fan page for all our Fashion Show coverage here.

JDV Travel Member, Isabelle, enjoyed Style Week Fashion LA Show

One of our JDV Travel members, Isabelle, enjoyed the excitement and original fashions displayed throughout the floor.

Malan Breton Fashion
Male model wearing Malan Breton design

 One of the many bright suits the male models wore to open the show. Definitely could see the Asian influence here. And one of the sophisticated gowns also shown.

Don't forget, for more fashion highlights, please click over to our Joie De Vivre Travel fan page here.

Malan Breton Fashion
Malan Breton's classic brocade gown

Attn: South Bay, CA folks - there's a new classy #Italian restaurant in town! Visit @CityofRedondoBeach!

By Joy A. Kennelly


I recently visited Orlandos in Redondo Beach and was pleasantly surprised at how classy this Italian restaurant was seeing as it's in a little strip mall.


However, don't you find most of the best places are tucked away in obscure places? Orlandos is no exception. http://www.pizzeriaorlandos.com/

Read on here for the rest of the story and more fun foodie pix!

#JDVTravel at the #Longines Masters Show in case you missed it on Facebook

By Joy A. Kennelly

I rotate stories throughout all my social media sites before bringing them to my blog and if you'd like a jump on what we're sharing, please like my fan page for Joie De Vivre Travel here: https://www.facebook.com/JoysTravelAdventures?ref=hl


We were very privileged to be included as special guests of Longines during the prestigious Longines Masters Show at the Downtown Los Angeles Convention Center a few Sundays ago.



Here's the links to the actual photo albums and stories on our fan page too:

Longines Masters Grand Slam Pre-Show

Longines Masters Series wrap-up


Recently visited #SiliconValley and heard fascinating #China & #US panels @SiliconDragon #Tech #Startups

By Joy A. Kennelly

In case you aren't aware by now, in addition to my travel fan page and lifestyle events, I also cover tech events and then share them on my Digital Marketing Specialist Fan Page which you can like to stay up-to-date, or follow me here since I like to spread the love around.

This year I have free flight privileges through my Mom and finally was able to take advantage of it and flew up to SFO to participate in the very interesting Silicon Dragon mini-tech conference held at Draper University.

Especially enjoyed hearing this young man speak because I believe he will revolutionize the world with his robotics - please fund him.:)


Silicon Dragon Robotics Discussion

I also enjoyed hearing Linkedin, Uber, Evernote and Silicon Valley Bank speakers discuss doing business in China and other panels as well.

Linkedin, Uber, Evernote & Silicon Valley Bank discuss doing business in China

Lots of tech industry heavyweights participated and I've given a very comprehensive review of the entire Silicon Dragon confernce which you can read when you click here.

Don't forget to read the captions. That's where I put all the good stuff.:)

Here's my pictorial essay of the recent @LATravelMassive mixer - make sure to click the link for more!

By Joy A. Kennelly


Recently attended the fun LA Travel Massive mixer over at Gracias Madre and enjoyed meeting fellow travelers in a really beautiful outdoor garden setting.

Lots and lots and LOTS of travel bloggers, an occasional professional travel journalist and travel professional too which made for fun conversation. I know citizen journalism is on the upswing, but I have a degree in journalism, am a published writer off my blog and find I respect those who are published offline a little more which is my own personal bias.

I'll admit it, I'm a travel writing snob.:) Working on it though because so many blogs are very, very interesting to read I'm finding. Plus, it's nice to connect with other writers period.

Moving  on, it was a fun event hosted by Mexico City and there was an amazing raffle which this travel/fashion blogger won. I'm so jealous! lol Aren't you?  P1070686

In any case, the event was fun, informative, tasty, and well run. It's nice to have an LA Chapter that is active.

I also enjoyed seeing the changes taking place in the WeHo Design District since I really hadn't been there since moving back from Las Vegas.

So without further ado, enjoy these (sometimes blurry, I apologize in advance) pix from the mixer here.

And for the record, I have been writing comments next to each photo, but a millennial told me he just scans the photos, doesn't read captions which has made me write more copy in the header now.

Let me know which you like better. Thanks.

SoCal Innovation Forum #SIF pictorial essay for review #Startups #China #US #Tech #USC

By Joy A. Kennelly

SoCal Innovation Forum (SIF) is the most influential cross-border forum integrating Chinese and American resources in Southern California’s entrepreneur community. I was privileged to be invited to attend and enjoyed meeting everyone and hearing the speakers, some I've heard often, others new to me.

Lots of great information and I've encapsulated it in my coverage on my Digital Marketing Specialist fan page here P1070720P1070722

Here's my pictorial essay review of the recent excellent @SoGalSummit event #IamSoGal #Startups #JDVTravel

By Joy A. Kennelly

Recently had the pleasure of attending the SoGal Summit produced by Pocket Sun and Elizabeth Galbut which was really well done. It was feminine, focused and fabulous!:)  P1070655

Lots of great speakers imparting wisdom, fun activities when you needed a mental break and lots of friendly participants eager to share.

Enjoyable all the way around. 

Here's my photo essay from my Digital Marketing Specialist fan page which you can like to stay informed of other tech conferences I'll attend in the future.



Log on here for the complete pictorial review here: http://on.fb.me/1N90IWm



#REACHNeXT Event recap via pictorial essay on my Facebook Fan Page - Digital Marketing Specialist Joy Kennelly

By Joy A. Kennelly

So many tech events it's hard to keep up! Recently attended the wonderful REACH NeXT event which you can review here and below if it's working: http://on.fb.me/1gVVxui Joy Kennelly & Ariel Barco enjoying the conferenceHead Monster Noel Lee

Enjoyed attending REACH NeXT which was "a one day pitch showdown to launch the most brilliant and pioneering minds in...

Posted by Digital Marketing Specialist, Joy A. Kennelly on Friday, September 25, 2015

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More to come soon! SoGal Summit was amazing. Still need to share pix from Clifton's Grand Opening with the LA Mayor and more...

You won't want to miss @MuirRanch's Farm-to-Table event this Sat, 9/19. #JoysTravelAdventures

My friend, Nikki Parrish and her friend, Farmer Mud, run the most amazing Farm-to-Table Supper in Pasadena which Melissa...

Posted by Joy's Travel Adventures on Saturday, August 29, 2015
This month's event is happening this weekend and all the details are here: http://www.eventbrite.com/e/field-to-vase-farm-to-table-supper-tickets-18321041729 This just in, we've been given a special $20 discount for all ticket types if you use flowersonyourhead as the promo code

And we're writing. Thoughts on the creative process and running a #startup

By Joy A. Kennelly

Connecting with my new writing group again today and can't wait. Have a lot of copy to share and finalize. Plus, always enjoy hearing what other writers are working on because it's inspiring to be around creative people. 

I've lead numerous writing groups in the past and this is new to simply relax and be part of one. Kinda nice actually. May actually work on the play that's been percolating in my brain if I finish all the business stuff soon.:)

Anyone else find if you're creative, it's best to have numerous creative projects going to help move things forward artistically? Or am I just ADD? LOL

I will say, focusing on one thing once it's time has proven very effective to accomplishing things quickly and easily. As a result, feeling more centered now that I know what it is I want and don't want in the person I'm looking to bring on. 

Transparency, honesty, integrity, communication, doing what they say they will do when they say they will do it, focus and helping, more than hindering, is key.

No more half in, half out. I'm only looking for those with skin in the game.

Cuz I'm raw from all my skin being in the game.:) 

That's all for now. More fun stuff later.


Troy Carter is my new hero in the tech space.:)

By Joy A. Kennelly

Have to admit, kinda over the sterileness of tech and lack of creativity, but now, having just read about Troy Carter's new startup accelerator, I'm like, those are my people.

I've always felt like an out-of-place artist because I love the cross-section of film, technology, music, lifestyle and travel too much to fit into one box and now I see I'm not alone. 

Good feeling. I want to meet him and be part of his accelerator.

My kinda people. 

Feeling motivated and inspired now. 

Good business reads and why I'm proud to call my family "Kennelly tough." #Entreprenuership #Biography #Books

By Joy A. Kennelly

It's really funny to me how different men are than women. I've been reading a lot of great books on female entrepreneurs, leaders and other change makers to have positive female role-models to look to rather than always reading about how men do things.

I really enjoyed Gail Evan's book, "Play Like a Man, Win Like a Woman: What Men Know About Success that Women Need to Learn. The book was listed for several months on the New York Times,BusinessWeek, and Wall Street Journal bestseller lists." (Stole this from her bio.:) 


Men are really, really competitive! I just saw this in action on a Facebook post I casually posted regarding the woman in Kentucky with the marriage license debacle. Now I haven't formed an opinion either way, because to be honest, I have too much on my plate as it is.

However, I guess all the guys who were going back and forth on this topic sure cared about it. A Lot!:) I've never seen straight men argue so fervently on something that is really minor if you consider everything else going on in the world today, but for some reason this issue of religion caused something close to flame war! Or maybe it was because Ted Cruz said it? LOL (And for the record, no, not voting for him.:)

I haven't been online much due to personal health issues and working on other stuff, but man, these guys went at it! They totally exemplified exactly what Gail writes about in her book, among other topics.

The reason I liked her book so much is because she succinctly, eloquently and in story form, shows through examples in her own life and career at CNN, the White House and other prestigious jobs she's held, how so very different men are than women! And how to deal with them and master these same techniques.

Now I get it!

I'm happy to be having a guy join my team who I think will be a great addition just by virtue of the male chromosome and will be announcing his involvement down the road. I've decided it's time for stealth mode, at least for the moment. As a publicist, I'm always sharing, but now, feel it's time to dive deep and stay low until I have what I want to offer fully actualized.

The other thing I've come to realize as I wrestle with my health issues is that my Dad raised my sisters and I to be extremely entrepreneurial and never give up. I'm very proud of both of my sisters and thought you might enjoy learning about us because I feel like sharing something personal which I don't always.

My youngest sister has been married forever, has three girls, dogs, cats and all now live in CO with her wonderful husband because that's where he was raised. They have bought, with my Dad's help, numerous real estate properties in cool places and renovated each and every single one. Glori and Dad often work together while Dwayne is working full-time in his demanding jobs and she knows everything there is to know about houses.

She's the boy my Dad always wanted.:) 

My parents idea of fun is watching those HGTV shows where homes are bought, renovated, then sold. I'm starting to get into them, but since it's what they've done, they watch knowingly whereas I'm learning. I helped renovate my Dad's rentals growing up and can paint and do basic stuff, but Glori is a master at everything. Very proud of her accomplishments in that realm. Her husband too.


She and her husband are now opening a new business where they're taking the skills and experience she's gained running their own real estate to offer to other investors and property owners in Breckenridge, Blue River and Placer Valley the security and safety of knowing their rental and personal properties are in good hands. They're pretty jazzed and have created an awesome website you can review here: http://www.alpinehomewatch.net/ 

(I helped her edit and gave her advice on working with her web guy. I still want her to create an app, but she doesn't understand that technology aspect yet. I'm sure it will come though, knowing her like I do.)

I do have to admit, sometimes I get a wee bit jealous because having a husband support your business while you're launching is a big deal. It's almost like having an angel investor because costs that single female entrepreneurs have to cover like basic living costs, are taken care of by a husband's full-time salary. I see a lot more mommy entrepreneurs find success simply by virtue of that financial fact which they seem to take for granted because they have other struggles I don't deal with, like kids, schools etc.

However, such is life. Now that I have someone who wants to help me who is as passionate about what I've been doing and understands what we need to do, perhaps everything will move along a lot faster now. At least that's my prayer.:)

Now, my other sister is just as entrepreneurial believe it or not. Both sisters have successfully moved out-of-state to develop new lives and opportunities. I think partly, because they have family members there with them. Grace is a single mom to my delightful college graduate niece and recently broke both her feet; yet still managed to drive for Lyft and was making a successful living doing that in Austin, until she now has an even better job more suited to her talents of arranging travel for a Fox production.

I'm proud of her too. Despite being injured, she's worked hard to overcome this and find work that makes her happy while serving others.

That's another thing we all have in common, we like to serve. My Dad was a great role-model and still is in that regard. Mom has always played a more low-key role serving my Dad and the family.

As I was listening to my sister's speak to my Dad on the phone recently, I realized we're a pretty tough bunch. We don't let obstacles like horrible tenants, broken bones, or damaged immune systems keep  us down for long. We see what needs to be done, we do it and then achieve other goals. I don't see that resolve in my neices, or some other women I meet, and have to say it must have come from being raised by my Dad. And Mom (who has different skills and talents.)

Here's an example from my past since I've been sharing about my sisters so much.

One Sunday, while still in high school, I was asked to walk the dog before church. We didn't have a fence around our large backyard yet and he needed out before we left. 

I donned some high heels that we played dress up in, grabbed the leash and the dog and began walking him around to do his business. Well, he saw a cat and began tearing off after it. Now, I'm still in heels remember, walking in grass, through trees and bushes in an unpaved backyard. 

I clung on for dear life and as he tore off, my grasp on the tree I was holding on to with one hand while holding his leash in the other, loosened and I had to let go while being dragged straight into a tree limb sticking out which rammed straight into my throat below my chin. 

I let go of his leash and ran bleeding back into the house crying. I only remember going to Dr. Starr's, our family doctor, that day, or somewhere else and getting lots of stitches before going to church later. At least that's how I like to remember it.:) However, if you don't believe me, ask me to show you the scar some day. It's still there. I recovered fine, but never did wear heels to walk him again! LOL

I like to say we're Kennelly tough.:)

I've also been reading Janet Hanson's book, More Than 85 Broads: Women Making Career Choices, Taking Risks, and Defining Success - On Their Own Terms who started what is now called the Elevate Network and also Milestone Capital. Very inspirational stories of women overcoming amazing odds in the financial industry and ultimately out of it too - sexism, ageism, breast cancer, and other physical ailments to achieve great things. Very inspirational!

More Than 85 Broads

All this to say, I've needed their stories to help me through a very tough time physically.  I won't bore you with the details, but just know I'm damned and determined to live a fully functional, happy life regardless. Just need to find the right medications and help to take care of myself.

Oh, and if you're curious, yes, I have read Sheryl Sandberg's book a few years back, Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead and loved it too.:)

Lean In

So, that's all. I need to stop now. It's been fun sharing and I hope you've enjoyed this little dive into my family background. I love them all very much in spite of everything and can't imagine doing life without them. Although we're very different, we're also very similar and I'm choosing to focus on that.:)

God bless.

Our #JoysTravelAdventures Le Diner en Blanc in #DTLA #photo essay for those who missed it. #Travel


Launched in Paris more than 25 years ago, the original essence of Dîner en Blanc remains: friendship, elegance and...

Posted by Joy's Travel Adventures on Tuesday, September 1, 2015


White Light, White Nights by Walk with Sally huge success! Guest blogged @SouthBayFoodies

By Joy A. Kennelly

Since many South Bay folks have been looking forward to my write-up on the recent White Light, White Nights cancer fundraiser review, just wanted to point you in the right direction since I am expanding my readership and guest blogged for my buddy, Micheal's site, South Bay Foodies.

Here's the intro to entice you over there.:)

Basking in the Glow of White Light White Night 2015

By  on August 31st, 2015

On Saturday, August 22nd, Walk With Sally hosted its 9th Annual White Light White Night in El Segundo, CA. Although the food and drinks are always delicious, it’s the heart of this event that brings people back year after year to experience one of the most highly anticipated parties of the South Bay summer season.


P1070089Nick Arquette started this charity in honor of his mother who passed away due to cancer and it has become a beacon of hope in the South Bay for those who have lost someone to cancer.

Fox Sports host, Jessica Rosales welcomed special guests as the evening began on the red carpet. Local notables included Supervisor for the 4th District of LA County candidate, Steve Napolitano and restaurateur Michael Zislis; Chef Deven Alexander, Cookbook author and Host of Healthy Decadence on Fit TV; and Walk With Sally Mentor, Amy Dorr.  Celebrities like James Anderson (NFL player for the Dallas Cowboys) and Carissa Rosario, International Maxim Model, were also in attendance.

To continue reading, please go here: http://www.southbayfoodies.com/2015/08/31/basking-in-the-glow-of-white-light-white-night-2015/

And for a complete photo essay review, please refer to my Facebook Fan page here: Walk With Sally Photo Album

Thanks for stopping by! More to come! Wait till you see Le Diner en Blanc pictures!:)



#Joy'sTravelAdventures Announces Partnership with @Serenify - A New Standard for Honesty Online

By Joy A. Kennelly

524677_10151384124488600_1033439932_nTravel Startup Founder, Joy A. Kennelly of Joy’s Travel Adventures (JTA & #JoysTravelAdventures), is happy to announce partnering with Serenify CEO/Founder Garrett Gilbertson and Lead Developer/Co-Founder, Jordan LaPointe, who have built the most comprehensive profile verification and certification services on the web and via mobile to include: background checks, credit scores, photo verification services and customizable private investigator verifications, which are just a sampling of the 30+ data points Serenify offers.

“JTA Members will have the option to have their profiles authenticated, verified and certified within minutes using Serenify which is much better than using social media verifications due to all the fake profiles on Facebook and Twitter,” says Kennelly, founder, Joy’s Travel Adventures. “Serenify adds an extra measure of credibility to our member’s travel profiles in a very low cost manner and allows female travelers to feel more comfortable traveling together.”

1477824_344832785657247_1667566605_nSerenify is the most up-to-date/comprehensive verification service available right now providing security and privacy which also meets FCRA data handling standards. Members control how their data is shared and Serenify provides access to the best data in the industry through their partnership with LexisNexis. Gilbertson created Serenify after hearing from friends, family, and experiencing it firsthand himself, the negative and sometimes dangerous online dating experiences people have had.

“My brother and I wanted to build something that would create a new standard for honesty on the web. Our goal is to help facilitate trusting relationships for peer-to-peer services like JTA, increase honesty and improve safety in online communication,” says Garrett Gilbertson, co- founder, Serenify. “The great thing is your Serenify verification is portable and you can take it with you. You don’t have to be a celebrity to be verified on Twitter with Serenify.”

Serenify makes online communication safer, more transparent and more successful—now for Joy’s Travel Adventures’ member’s travel profiles. Serenify solves the problems caused by fraudulent and misleading online profiles by serving as an opt-in, third-party, profile verification and certification service. Serenify also provides monthly re-verification to ensure profiles are current using a data filtering algorithm. Member’s verified data is then offered via the Serenify API and hyperlinks wherever establishing trust online is needed.

ABOUT JOY’S TRAVEL ADVENTURES  38b9706be1fcffe5d4e5dc8c824467be

Joy’s Travel Adventures (working title) is a multi-channel engagement and e-commerce platform specializing in providing matching services for like-minded females to share travel experiences. Joy’s Travel Adventures’ goal is to provide one-stop social, shopping and matching services, resulting in greatly enhanced overall travel experiences for the target audience. The platform will provide a full range of offerings to enable a successful travel experience, such as travel packages and tours with professional, qualified guides, travel advice, products, information, videos and other resources.

JTA has plans to launch a new website with the travel personality quiz developed by ShoppingQuizzes, member profiles, outside tour operators, and now member online verification by Serenify under a new name.  Current beta site: www.joystraveladventures.strikingly.com

An Android App for Joy’s Travel Adventures is also available on the Google Play Store. Joy’s Travel Adventures’ online travel communities on Facebook and Meetup offer travel tours and special events designed for female solo/group travel experiences in Los Angeles, expanding nationally and internationally in 2016.

Founder/Host Joy Kennelly is an Award-Winning Digital Marketing Strategist and Founder of The Joy Writer PR & Digital Marketing Firm, Goal Gals LA, and now Joy’s Travel Adventures. As an adventurer who has traveled through 27 countries and most of the United States, both on her own and with her family, Joy Kennelly has worked for Alaska and Delta Airlines, the Los Angeles Convention & Visitors Bureau, high-end hotels both in Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

She appeared as an airline expert in “Beating the High Cost of Travel” infomercial featuring Travel Expert, Tom Parsons, and Radio Personality, Casey Kasem, as her first job in entertainment. Her interesting experiences abroad earned her a “Spirit of Adventure” honor from the Youth Hostels of America. Kennelly's savvy, unique and fun travel videos showcase different aspects of any given city including all the best places a city has to offer and how to enjoy a local culture. 


A published writer/influencer, Kennelly has covered the tech scene for TechZulu and her page one Google blog, Pure, Unadulterated Joy, as research for building JTA. A Who’s Who in Technology, she ran the Los Angeles Chapter of StartupMind tech group for a year and a half in Silicon Beach, CA which grew from 40 members to over 700 and expanded to include startup events in Pasadena, Silicon Valley, Orange County and Las Vegas under her leadership.

ABOUT SERENIFY Serenify was started to offer people an easy way to represent themselves truthfully online and build stronger relationships online – both professional and romantic. Serenify performs a more in-depth profile verification and certification service by offering customizable background checks, credit checks and customizable private investigator verifications (coming soon). Member’s verified data is offered via the Serenify API and hyperlinks wherever establishing trust online is needed. For more information, please review: https://serenify.com/

DownloadSerenify CEO/Founder Garrett Gilbertson is an Air Force Captain and Afghan war veteran with 7 years of government acquisition and management experience. He launched Serenify with his brother Jordan LaPointe and bootstrapped $250,000 in seed funding by building Gilbertsongems.com. A graduate from the United States Air Force Academy, Gilbertson was also recognized as the 2013 Outstanding Student in Entrepreneurship from Pepperdine’s Graziadio School of Business and Management.


He was selected to pitch at the USC Angel Investor Summit, Pepperdine $5K Pitch contest, a finalist at the recent Silicon Beach Pitch Contest and recently invited to present at the upcoming Tech Crunch Disrupt. Garrett is also a venture partner at LH Ventures an early stage venture fund.

PhotoSerenify Lead Developer/Co-Founder, Jordan LaPointe, was previously at Target Corporation, where he worked on several teams that launched Target's first responsive website, completely overhauled Target's marketing email system and created a first-of-its-kind content management system which supplanted a multi-million dollar application from Adobe Systems. Mark Fox, Abraham Bosch and Jared May round out the team.


Le @DinerEnBlancLA returns this Thursday, 8/27 to Los Angeles - Secret location! #Foodies #TravelTuesday

UnnamedThis looks fabulous and you're all invited! Get your tickets until noon tomorrow here: http://losangeles.dinerenblanc.info/register

Once again, the elegant white wave of dinner guests will invade one of the most prestigious public locations in the city. Dîner en Blanc returns to Los Angeles, on Thursday, August 27, 2015. For this second edition, close to 2400 revelers are expected at a new and secret location.

The 2013 inaugural edition of this très chic picnic attracted close to 1300 cultural enthusiasts for a memorable evening on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills. 218c67158fc394ed3dd1991535edd131-1390328710-1024x768This annual secret affair, promises another unforgettable evening of elegance, beauty, and magic, as it takes over an undisclosed public space whose location is revealed only minutes prior to the commencement of the event.






 Here's highlights of others that have taken place around the world in the video above. Stunning, eh?

“If you were at the 2013 event, you know to circle this date! This event allows guests to enjoy some of the most prestigious and iconic public spaces in the city with elegance and flair,” says Sandy Safi, co-founder of Dîner en Blanc International. “For this new edition, we have once again searched the city high and low to find a venue that will ‘wow’ and render this night unique and magical as well as accommodate a greater number of guests.”

Launched in Paris more than 25 years ago, the original essence of Dîner en Blanc remains: friendship, elegance and gallantry. Now, more than 100,000 revelers around the world give this international event an exciting platform for participants to exhibit their fashion sense, showcase their fine taste for design and elegance, and share their gastronomic delights.

WHEN:      THURSDAY, AUGUST 27TH  from 7 - 11p.m. – rain or shine

WHERE:     Top Secret Location

The location of the event is kept secret until the very last minute adding excitement and mystique to the evening.  The mystery is part of the original Parisian concept as the Paris event takes place every year without authorization. Secrecy is key to its success!

To maintain the uniqueness of Dîner en Blanc as well as staying true to tradition, guests must observe certain requirements and follow a few key rules:

  • Registration to participate happens in three stages: Phase 1 is for members who attended the previous event; Phase 2 is for new members who are referred by Phase I  attendees; Phase 3 is for people who signed up on the waiting list via the official website: losangeles.dinerenblanc.info/register
  • Once confirmed, each guest’s participation becomes mandatory, regardless of weather conditions.  This is a rain or shine event.
  • Dress code:  elegant and white only.  Originality is encouraged as long as it is stylish and tasteful.
  • Table setting:  all white!
  • To ensure that the location secret is kept undisclosed until last minute, guests meet at an assigned departure location and are escorted by a Dîner en Blanc volunteer.
  • In order to leave the event location as clean as when they arrived, guests are required to leave with all their belongings, leftovers and litter.

 Guests Must Bring:

  • A table, two white chairs, white tablecloth.
  • A picnic basket comprising fine food and proper stemware and white dinnerware.

o   A catered picnic basket option, which can be picked up at the site, will be available for those who do not wish to pack their own. Guests wishing to do so must reserve online through Dîner en Blanc website during the initial ticket registration.

  • Wine and champagne must be pre-ordered through the event. Bringing alcohol is prohibited.

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For full details on the event’s rules and regulations, please visit the official website: international.dinerenblanc.info/about.

Apothic Wine is proud to be the Official Wine Partner of the 2015 U.S. Diner en Blanc series. Celebrity Cruises is proud to be the Official Modern Luxury Vacation Partner of the 2015 U.S. Diner en Blanc series. Le Dîner en Blanc – Los Angeles gratefully acknowledges Canard-Duchêne as an official Champagne partner of the 2015 Dîner en Blanc – Los Angeles.

About Dîner en Blanc

Launched in Paris in 1988 by François Pasquier and a handful of friends, Dîner en Blanc has become a worldwide epicurean phenomenon. Dîner en Blanc - Paris now attracts nearly 15,000 people each year. What was a “friends and word-of-mouth only” event has grown into an international sensation celebrated on five continents.

While the technology behind the event may have changed over the years, the principles fueling this fantastic event have not: guests continue to gather at a secret location for the sole purpose of sharing a gourmet meal with good friends in one of their city’s most beautiful public spaces.  

Founded in 2012 and headquartered in Montreal, Canada, Dîner en Blanc International is responsible for developing this secret posh picnic in over 60 cities in more than 25 countries around the world. Each event is headed by passionate local organizers who fell in love with the concept and wanted to bring it to their city, giving this rendezvous a local flair.

About Apothic

Embrace the intrigue of the unexpected.  Apothic® White, the official wine of Dîner en Blanc, blends Chardonnay, Riesling and Pinot Grigio to create a refreshing, medium-bodied wine with flavors of peach and apricot, that leads to a crisp, balanced finish.  Named from the 13th century European Apotheca, where wine was blended and stored, the wines of Apothic fuse Old World intrigue with modern sophistication.  Our winemaker, Debbie Juergenson, crafts unique, captivating blends that create layers of complexity.  Taste a White with Darker Motives and revel in the intrigue of Dîner en Blanc.

 About Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises’ iconic “X” is the mark of modern luxury, with its cool, contemporary design and warm spaces; dining experiences where the design of the venues is as important as the cuisine; and the amazing service that only Celebrity can provide, all created to provide an unmatchable experience for vacationers’ precious time. Celebrity Cruises' 10 ships offer modern luxury vacations visiting all seven continents. Celebrity also presents immersive cruise tour experiences in Alaska and Canada.

About Canard-Duchêne
Canard-Duchêne is a Champagne House, situated in the heart of the Champagne vineyards. It was founded in 1868, and is one of the most prominent Houses or Grandes Marques in Champagne. Canard-Duchêne is unique in its origins, history and style. The brand will be showcasing 3 delicious champagnes at this year’s edition of Le Diner en Blanc – Los Angeles.

To keep up to date on event announcements:

Diner En Blanc - Los Angeles


 For all official videos of Dîner en Blanc around the world, visit YouTube Le Dîner en Blanc

For more info and photos of Dîner en Blanc events from around the world, visit the official website dinerenblanc.info

See you there!:)

In light of the new Steve Jobs film here's some stories and comics to make you chuckle #Tech #Apple

By Joy A. Kennelly
Years ago when I was transitioning from one career to another I began catering to pay the bills. I worked for some of the most prestigious catering companies and ate some of the most delicious food I'd ever tasted up to that point which turned me into the foodie I am today.

I also worked during some of the most amazing red carpet events too like the private Hollywood Foreign Press pre-Oscar party, a private party at the home of the Architectural Digest publisher or editor, I forget which, but I do know he had the most amazing art collection and stunning home; numerous Academy parties; a private party at Paramount Studios for Grease; and my favorite, serving Adrien Brody during the Oscar's Governor's Ball after he had so famously kissed Halle Berry.

Having worked the event, I missed the kiss and had no idea who he was, just knew all night long, celebrities kept coming over to congratulate him. If you look closely in the pictures they always take of the hundreds of staff you'll see me.:)

But I'll never forget seeing Oprah when she came into the media tent where I was serving and seeing her up close and personal for a few treasured moments while she stood for photographers shooting her picture. 

The reason I'm telling you all of this is because I also happened to see Aaron Sorkin outside grabbing a smoke after he won an Emmy for the West Wing too and was able to tell him I loved his writing. He was so jazzed and excited I'll never forget him.

Which leads me to the film he just wrote about Steve Jobs| Here's the trailer - it looks amazing! 



I really wanted to see the sneak preview, but will have to wait like everyone else unless a publicist for the film reads my blog and takes pity on this huge fan and lets me and my Mom come to another one. Mom is the Apple queen - everything is Apple and she's more tech savvy in certain things than me! She's takes almost every Apple online and in person class they offer, watches the press presentations, and tells everyone she meets how wonderful Apple is!

Love her tech fascination. We often sit next to each other sharing what we're learning when I visit. Ironic, eh? A woman in her 70's interested in tech, but those are the genes I have flowing through my blood.:)

Now, because I have to run, and too much typing isn't good for me, here's some fun cartoons I promised earlier. Enjoy!

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Thought 6


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Shaking off last week and ready to blast off this week

Sometimes you just have to muscle through a horrendous week to get to a better one and see the sunshine of the new week.

Lately I've realized I write when I feel I have to convey something and I don't want to keep doing that.

I want to write because I want to.

It's my passion.

It's how I express myself.

It's fun.

It's a way to communicate.

It's artistic and creative.

And it's part of who I am.

So, as long as I can, I plan to write more freely because I need to get back my joie de vivre.

Shaking off last week ala Taylor Swift.


Have a great week everybody! I plan to!

So many events, so much work, so little help, but working on changing this asap. #JoysTravelAdventures update

By Joy A. Kennelly

Realizing I can't continue to do this all myself, I've brought in Tomiya Eastlin to assist me with social media efforts and more. We get invitations to events to attend and cover almost daily which makes it hard to keep up with here, in addition to all my technology, videography, writing and fundraising efforts, but we're working on changing that asap.

More later. 

Can't wait to share with you all the fun times at The Forum during Happy Hour and the REO Speedwagon concert. Boston was the headliner, but didn't recognize much of their music since I was more into R & B in high school.:) 

Michael Joy and Nicole at Boston Concert
Bumped into good friends Micheal and Nicole of SouthBay Foodies too!

More pix coming soon! Enjoy the sun and hit their outside patio for some refreshments before your next concert why don't you? Here's some pictorial highlights of the food offered to get you in the mood too: https://www.facebook.com/JoysTravelAdventures

Sharlina, another Joy's Travel Adventures member and long-time friend, Nikki, and I were invited to participate in the Volunteer thank you party for Grand Performances which was a blast. Rocky Duwani and Blitz the Ambassador performed. (This pic is of Blitz- Sharlina says he got flow.:)


Here's more pix from that super fun night: Joy's Travel Adventures Facebook Fan Page We post a lot of events we're attending or recommend on our fan page too so like it already ok?:)

Last night was an absolute blast too attending the Mercedes Benz Evolution Tour concert with Bastille.

Joy & Tomiya at #MBEvolution TourI wore my Demand Media t-shirt to give them a shoutout and because it's one of the few t-shirts I actually like how it fits.:)

We've also posted highlights on our twitter feeds which you can peek at here: https://twitter.com/thejoywriterx2 and https://twitter.com/TOMIYAMIYA23 

More to come.

Oh, and if you notice my hair has magically grown long almost overnight, I owe this magic to Hairdreams and the wonderful team of David Matthew Reid, Danny & Aubry of Studio DNA. I was first introduced to Danny & Aubry by Yelp when Yelp Elite launched in Santa Monica years and years ago.:)

Here's the formal pic from that amazing night with more pix from my amazing transformation available here and here. Can you believe I won all this glamourizing? Really boosted my spirits along with my hair!:)


There's so many other events I need to share, but gotta run! Happy Hump Day everyone!


Hit private screening of @CastrolUSA #Drift promo @SoHoHouse way cool! #gaming #Tech #Drifting

By Joy A. Kennelly

This past May I was personally invited via an international call from London to attend an exclusive private screening of Castrol EDGE's premier screening of the latest Titanium Trial: Titanium Strong Virtual Drift; where, in a world-first, video game technology was fused with the real world, in a ground-breaking driving challenge.  Castrol EDGE_Virtual Drift_Hero2

When I heard what it was about, being the car lover that I am, I knew I had to attend. Turns out I wasn't the only one who likes hot cars either.:)

Castrol Edge Premier Screening of Titanium

Now try to imagine this.

A race car driver, wearing an Oculus Rift headset, driving a real life car, blind to the outside world, but immersed in a virtual reality universe, drove a car around a race track only guided by his headset.

I repeat.

A race car driver. Wearing an Oculus Rift headset. Blind to the outside world. Immersed in a virtual reality universe. Drove a car around a race track. Relying only on his Oculus Rift headset!

It’s as mental as it sounds. Watch the video here:


it was an awesome screening! And very cool to meet the key players behind this incredible technology and gain a peek into what potentially is to come for automotive and gaming. 

It took place at the very discreet, exclusive Soho House West Hollywood which has phenomenal views all over the city and is like a secret hideaway in the heart of WeHo for those in the know which was fascinating to visit on it's own.  20150514_103433

Formula Drift Professional and Titanium Trial Driver, Matt Powers, renowned director, Ben Conrad, creative technologists, Glenn Synder and Adam Amaral, were there alongside Castrol spokespeople who answered all our questions.
Brilliant guys and so humble. Very nice to meet them and learn about this amazing technology and how they did it. What a team!20150514_103532

All guests were also able to check it out for ourselves via the Oculus Rift virtual reality stations at the venue, making us feel like we were right in the car with Matt which also showed exclusive behind-the- scenes footage. Here's me experiencing it. Too funny!:)

Joy Kennelly experiencing Oculus Rift 20150514_103050


Everyone was very nice and it was a great experience. Even saw my buddy Efren of TechZulu there too!

20150514_105759 Thank you Castrol Oil for including me in a once-in-a-lifetime experience.:)

Hopefully it won't be, but for right now... Adios. Gotta run. Late for a doctor's appointment!

Choosing forgiveness because it's the right thing to do.

By Joy A. Kennelly

When life hands you lemons, what you do with those lemons determines how your life will move forward. So, in the wise words of my friend and this meme, I am focusing on building the new. Or in the words of this scripture  Meme on Change found in Philippians 3:13 & 14:

Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

And as I was reminded this morning in church, Colossians 3:12-14

So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you. Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity.…

And that's my sermon for today.:) God bless all of you all's...

More fun stuff ahead! Right now I'm off to see Boston at the newly renovated Forum and enjoy their luscious happy hour offerings! See you around! My friend is coming shortly!:)

Thoughts on #GenderBias or Growing up in a family where my Dad wanted boys and how it's shaped me

By Joy A. Kennelly

My two sisters (Grace and Glori) and I were raised by a Father who wanted boys, but ended up with three girls. A blonde, a brunette and a redhead. So you could say I've grown up with gender bias my entire life.:)

When we were little we didn't play with dolls, we played with hot wheels, building blocks, and imaginative games where we were wild animals, perhaps because when we were very young, my Dad moved our entire family to live in Africa on a missionary boarding school in Kenya while he taught school on his sabbatical. Perhaps because Dad subconsciously was giving us toys he thought we'd like? Who knows. 

We visited wild animal parks, tribal villages and traveled around Africa during the month-long breaks we took during our three month on, one month off school experience.

You could also say we grew up traveling because prior to that life-changing experience, we also traveled 7 years earlier throughout South America in a converted Pepsi Cola truck motor home as a family and had adventures none of my friends growing up in the South Bay could relate to.

As a result, my sisters and family and I were very close because it happens when you only have each to depend on, or share such intense life-changing experiences like we did. That's why I love traveling and encourage everyone to do it, even with small children. It shaped my sisters and I into very independent, strong women which has it's good points and it's bad points.:)

I distinctly remember walking behind my Dad while we were in one South America country because we had been warned of pickpockets and I was "guarding" him (as a 7 year old I believe.) I'll never forget the armed military men with guns, the tanks in the streets and other images you just didn't see in the states as children, but other young foreign children grow up with on a daily basis.

As children back in the states, my sisters and I laid bricks, we painted and maintained my Dad's numerous rental properties and again, were treated like boys because my Dad is all-male and never thought anything of it. My least favorite memory was having to pick up dog poop the day of my birthday party.

Maybe that's why I don't own a dog to this day?:)

We also all played AYSO soccer and my two sisters became quite good at it, one playing as the only female on an all-boys varsity team (which went over really well with the boys she played with, and against, trust me) and my other sister continuing to play and referee the sport to this day.

I, on the other hand, really didn't like it. 

Because my birthday falls on December 31, I was always younger than my teammates in many ways which was difficult. I don't remember the exact circumstances, but I know one team my Dad forced me onto was an All-Star team and they resented having a "non-AllStar" player like me join them.

As a result, my own team members would run past me at practice and deliberately kick me in the shins to express their anger. They also taunted me constantly making life miserable.

Needless to say, I hated playing, but stuck it out because my Dad wouldn't let me quit. I remember it never got better, but since it was a short season having joined midway through, I was able to endure it.

There are three years between my sisters and I. They are only a year apart. This meant I was always forced to go into various Sunday Schools in churches we were visiting by myself, while my sisters had each other for company.

I hated that too, but did it because my Dad wouldn't let me not do it. 

See a pattern here?

My Dad has always forced me to do things beyond my comfort zone and as a result I now have little fear of entering rooms where I know no one, joining groups that are already established and expressing my opinion as a woman in a room where often I'm the only female.

Two final stories then I'll share why I'm really writing. 

Two memories that stand out as defining moments in my life and probably subconsciously are part of the reason I established my travel company are as follows.

My best friend growing up was a girl named Kieva who was the daughter of my Dad's best friend, Ed. My parents attended the same church, double dated, married around the same time and knew each other for years before we were born.

Kieva and I were born two days apart, in the same hospital, two doors down from each other, and she was my best friend even though she lived in Frazier Park, about two hours outside of Los Angeles. She was fearless, had a brother, was raised by a then divorced single mother with little supervision while I was sheltered, all sisters, with a Dad who was constantly sharing articles on rape, women getting hurt by men and other stories designed to make me more cautious, even as he pushed me into situations where it could easily have been dangerous.

I'll never forget the time when I was 13 years old and really wanted to visit Kieva so my Dad put me on a bus by myself to go from Manhattan Beach, where we were living at the time, to Downtown LA to catch the Greyhound Bus for a bus ride two hours away to Bakersfield.

Now I had never gone Downtown before, had never been to that Greyhound bus station before, and as you can imagine, was pretty overwhelmed when I arrived (thinking of all the bad things that could happen to me as a result of the indoctrination my Dad kept giving me via newspaper articles.)

Somehow I missed the bus I was supposed to take probably because I arrived late and was too shy to push to the front of the bus line to make sure I got on the right bus and missed my connection. There was a black guy who saw me looking confused who came and put his arm around me offering advice. I am positive he was a pimp to this day and probably thought I was a runaway by his actions.

I was able to get away and finally found a bus station person to help me find the right bus and get on it hours later. I didn't arrive in Bakersfield until 2am after leaving Manhattan Beach earlier that day which explains how lost I was and how much time passed.

Kieva and her Mom were worried when I didn't arrive on time and were there waiting for me until that time. Remember, this is before cell phones and there was no way to communicate with anyone what had happened. 

We were so happy to see each other we stayed up talking until 4am I remember. Good times. We used to get in so much trouble together. I think she was the one who helped me overcome many of my fears and will always hold a fond memory in my heart for the friendship we shared until she got married and moved away.

The other distinctive memory I have of my Dad pushing me out of my comfort zone was when I wanted to attend a class at a church I didn't normally attend and not driving yet, think I was 17 at the time, my Dad drove me there, dropped me off and told me to find my own way back. 

I attended the seminar, enjoyed myself, and when it came time to go home, asked the organizer if she knew anyone going my way. She didn't and asked the attendees for me. An older man offered and I thought she must know him, so I agreed to go with him in his car. She told me after she didn't, but by this time I was committed and kept my guard up.

We got into his two seater Mercedes Benz convertible and that's when it started. He wanted to date me and began asking me all kinds of questions. Turned out his youngest daughter was older than me and he was in his sixties. 

He wanted to take me out after and being the naive, sheltered 17 year old that I was, raised in a Christian home without much worldly influence having grown up without a TV (until my sisters and I won one when we sold the most candy bars together to help me win the contest when I was a Junior in High School.:)

As a side note, that wasn't my first selling gig either. When we were very young, I had a flower and lemonade stand where I sold to my neighbors. The TV was such a goal of ours in high school having not had one for so long, I recruited my sisters and we went door-to-door, sat outside our local grocery store, recruited our friends at church and sold the most candy bars out of anyone except one other student who I tied with.

I'll also never forget being so proud and happy carrying my TV box through the corridors of my high school only to get beaned in the head with an apple core by someone who was jealous. That was probably my first experience realizing not everyone will be happy when you work hard and win.:)

But I digress. 

So, here I am in this man's car, being driven from Torrance to Manhattan Beach by someone who is in their 60's who wants to "date" a 17 year old. Me. Tall, blonde, freckled, naive me. Again, no cell phones people. Gotta remember this.

He keeps asking me to eat with him so I give in and choose Bob's Big Boy thinking it will be crowded and perhaps safer than somewhere else. It was, and I'll never forget the looks we got walking into the restaurant.

Even they knew something was wrong with this picture, but my Dad? Oh, no worries. My daughter can handle it. Oy.

We sit down and in order to look even younger than my age I order a tall ice cream sundae. We talk some more, me still extremely uncomfortable, and then it's finally over. We get back into his car and he drives me home.

I'll also never forget what I said to him when he asked if he could see me again. "Sorry Bob, but I don't think I can meet your social needs right now." LOL Where I came up with that line I'll never know, but when I went inside and told my Dad my experience, all he did was laugh.

No concern at all...

That's kinda when I realized I was on my own as far as the world was concerned. I chose to travel to Europe by myself after college with great fear and trepidation, only calmed by the fact I was going to volunteer with a missions team for the first month or two of my experience which gave me time to acclimate to being in a foreign country by myself for the first time.

That's a story for another time, but all this to say, I know what it's like to be in scary situations or pressuring situations. I know what it's like to travel alone (that wasn't my last experience doing so.) And I know it's more dangerous for single females to travel alone than males simply by virtue of our gender.

I also know it's more difficult for women to find funding in technology than men because I've lived it, seen it, researched it, reported on it, and fought against gender bias since getting into this field.

But at a certain point, you just give in and say, I want to eat. I want to have my bills covered. I want to thrive, not merely survive and if having a man be the face of my women-focused business in order to get funding, then that's what I'm going to do.

I'm tired of fighting for respect. I'm tired of my accomplishments being discounted as a professional. I'm tired of my abilities being questioned or marginalized.

I give up fighting.

These past few weeks, living with no money due to the male friend I was helping with his business get funded (while mine isn't) stiffing me on money he promised he would pay for my work, and the fact I can't do the telephone sales job any more because it aggravates my hand injuries too much, has caused me to wake up to the fact I either change, adjust, fit in, or allow my dream of running a successful technology company for women die.

And I refuse to do that.

I've worked too hard, for too long not to see it through. I know it's a good idea. I know it's needed and I know I haven't exhausted all my options yet. You know how I know that? Because my male CTO told me that when I called him ready to quit.

He believes in me, my company, our efforts together and because of his encouragement and belief, I'm willing to do what it takes to continue.

I have been told by travel experts, the winner of last season's Amazing Race, women I meet wherever I travel or hold mixers, and other travelers I meet, the idea of helping women find other women to travel with is a great idea. I've experienced it personally. I know women travel differently than men and we sometimes need a little more encouragement to step outside our comfort zone.

I had my Dad pushing me, but there are many women who don't and will never accomplish their travel dreams out of fear, lack of experience and or right planning. That's why I created the company. It's why I'm still passionate about it despite the many, many obstacles I've overcome and continue to overcome.

It's why I am now seeking a CEO who will come along to push it forward and work beside me with skills and experience that will enhance my abilities and my team's abilities. I want someone who will take an objective look at what I'm doing right, what needs fine-tuning and what needs to be done differently in order to achieve our goals of finding funding. 

What people sometimes fail to understand about me is that I am in constant self-improvement mode. I want to change, grow and develop into a better person. Doesn't mean I always react correctly, but it does mean I take constructive criticism really, really, really well.

I'm not the same person I was even a year ago.

There are parts of my life I will continue to chip away at because I haven't reached perfection, but there are other aspects I'm proud to have conquered. That's why I love to read and learn from people in the tech field and every aspect of business because years ago, when my Dad paid me to read motivational books in college to earn money, I'll never forget reading one that said, the books you read today will be who you are like five years from now.

May we all continue to grow, expand our minds and our lives and read.

Therapy helps too.:)

So, now back to the grindstone if you'll excuse me. I have a lot of work to do. 




As a travel writer/video producer who has experienced 27 countries and most of the United States, Joy Kennelly has produced publicity materials, tour guides, blogs, scripts, travel articles, website copy and travel videos. Her love of travel was cultivated by her adventure loving parents from a young age traveling by plane, boat, train and bus all over South America and Africa.  

She has covered four-star hotels, Food & Wine Festivals nation-wide in her page one Google blog: Pure, Unadulterated Joy, and her coverage on Big Sur and Hearst Castle inspired a TV travel episode. As an airline industry professional, she wrote the script and appeared in a "Beating the High Cost of Travel" infomercial featuring Travel Expert, Tom Parsons, and Radio Personality, Casey Kasem. Her interesting experiences abroad earned her the “Spirit of Adventure” honor from the Youth Hostels of America Organization.

She is building Joy’s Travel Adventures into an online global travel community for female travelers.

ShoppingQuizzes.com startup was the winner of Digital LA’s Digital Women Startup Showcase, a finalist in Silicon Beach Fest 2015, and recipient of the USC Marshall-Greif Incubator Award. The team has been part of the NSF Innovation Node - Los Angeles ZAP! Entrepreneurship Program (Spring 2015) and Women's Startup Lab (Winter 2014.) CEO/Co-Founder Jennie Wong was accepted into the prestigious Female Founders Conference hosted by YCombinator in San Francisco in February 2015 and launched the Female Founders Happy Hour upon her return to Silicon Beach which has grown to over 60 members under her leadership.


Custom Quiz Based on the Latest Research in Cognition and Decision Science

 Los Angeles, CA July 2015:



Joy's Travel Adventures Founder, Joy Kennelly
Joy's Travel Adventures Founder, Joy Kennelly

Travel Startup Founder, Joy A. Kennelly of Joy’s Travel Adventures, is happy to announce partnering with Co-Founders, Jennie Wong, Ph.D. and Steve Krause of ShoppingQuizzes.com, an award-winning custom product-finder for online retailers, to design a travel personality quiz to match Joy's Travel Adventures' emale travelers with their most compatible traveling companions. Using the latest research in cognition and decision science, ShoppingQuizzes.com quizzes deliver greater engagement resulting in increased conversion rates, boosts social sharing and enhances the mobile experience.




Co-Founders, Jennie and Steve of award-winning tech startup, ShoppingQuizzes.com
Co-Founders, Jennie and Steve of award-winning tech startup, ShoppingQuizzes.com

“Our members will now have the opportunity to be matched according to their personality and travel preferences making for a smoother, happier experience traveling with someone new,” says Kennelly, founder, Joy’s Travel Adventures. “It’s important our matching service is cutting edge technology and with ShoppingQuizzes.com creating this travel personality quiz for us, it will be.”



Quiz for Golf Headquarters example
Quiz for Golf Headquarters example

Jennie Wong, Ph.D., is also certified in the Meyers Briggs Personality Type which makes the theory of psychological types described by C. G. Jung understandable and useful in people's lives. 

“Our quizzes solve the problem of overwhelming choices which creates a minimal conversion rate for online businesses,” says Wong. “We have been working with apparel, beauty, and general merchandise retailers, and travel is another category where we can help women quickly find the best option for them.  It was a natural fit for us to partner with Joy’s Travel Adventures to design their travel personality matching quiz.”

Joy’s Travel Adventures (working title) is a multi-channel engagement and e-commerce platform specializing in providing matching services for like-minded females to share travel experiences. Joy’s Travel Adventures’ goal is to provide one-stop social, shopping and matching services, resulting in greatly enhanced overall travel experiences for the target audience.

The platform provides a full range of offerings to enable a successful travel experience, such as travel packages and tours with professional, qualified guides, travel advice, products, information, and other resources (www.joystraveladventures.strikingly.com) An Android App for Joy’s Travel Adventures is also available on the Google Play Store.

Joy's savvy, unique and fun travel videos showcase different aspects of any given city including all the best places a city has to offer and how to enjoy a local culture.   

In conjunction with the web series and travel personality quiz, Joy’s Travel Adventures’ online travel community offers travel tours and special events designed for female solo/group travel experiences including: latest summer adventure to Ecuador happening July 29 – August 6, 2015 in Quito and the Galapagos Islands which includes hotels, international air transportation, yacht to and from the islands, certain meals, and all activities. (Custom itinerary available for review here: https://docsend.com/view/cn8jgik - use passcode JTA Ecuador 2015 Blog)




attending the Cirque Musica Hollywood Bowl performance on July 19, 2015


and a travel-focused brunch at the newly renovated Farmer’s Daughter Hotel Tart Restaurant on August 16, 2015 at 10:30am.


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ABOUT JOY’S TRAVEL ADVENTURES Founder/Host Joy Kennelly is an Award-Winning Digital Marketing Strategist and Founder of The Joy Writer PR & Digital Marketing Firm, Goal Gals LA, and now Joy’s Travel Adventures (www.joystraveladventures.strikingly.com) As an adventurer who has traveled through 27 countries and most of the United States, both on her own and with her family, Joy Kennelly has worked for Alaska and Delta Airlines, the Los Angeles Convention & Visitors Bureau, high-end hotels both in Los Angeles and Las Vegas and appeared as an airline expert in “Beating the High Cost of Travel” infomercial featuring Travel Expert, Tom Parsons, and Radio Personality, Casey Kasem, as her first job in entertainment. Her interesting experiences abroad earned her the “Spirit of Adventure” honor from the Youth Hostels of America.

A published writer, she has covered the Silicon Beach scene for TechZulu and her page one Google blog for numerous years. A Who’s Who in Technology, she ran the Los Angeles Chapter of StartupMind, an offshoot of the 5,000 person Meetup Group in Silicon Valley, for a year and a half in Silicon Beach which grew from 40 members to over 700 under her leadership.

Joy’s Travel Adventures’ CTO is Robert Mathieu who has over 20 years’ experience leading design and development on application and Web projects for widely varying clients, including Walmart.com, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, General Electric, Chevron, VISA, American Medical Association, Reliant Energy, Universal, and Mattel.  In addition, Robert has led and successfully delivered application development projects for the United States National Reconnaissance Office and Department of Defense.  Projects led include early Web adoption for the U.S. government and satellite launch support programs, ecommerce implementations, online banking system development, multi-media integration, and ticketing systems.



Multi-award-winning ShoppingQuizzes.com is a Los Angeles based tech startup that provides custom product-finders for online retailers that more than DOUBLE conversion rates. Quizzes embed on the retailer's website and ask the user 3-5 binary questions to generate a personalized Top 3 list (and in the case of Joy’s Travel Adventures will identify a traveler’s personality and compatible travel companions.) The subscription tool is based on the latest research in cognitive and decision science and delivers greater engagement, as well as boosted social sharing and mobile experience.

ShoppingQuizzes.com startup was the winner of Digital LA’s Digital Women Startup Showcase, a finalist in Silicon Beach Fest 2015,

Jennie Wong at Silicon Beach Fest
Finalist Jennie Wong pitching at Silicon Beach Fest

and recipient of the USC Marshall-Greif Incubator Award. The team has been part of the NSF Innovation Node - Los Angeles ZAP! Entrepreneurship Program (Spring 2015) and Women's Startup Lab (Winter 2014.) Jennie was accepted into the prestigious Female Founders Conference hosted by YCombinator in San Francisco in February 2015 and launched the Female Founders Happy Hour upon her return to Silicon Beach which has grown to over 60 members under her leadership.

Jennie Wong Headshot

CEO Jennie Wong received her Ph.D. at the age of 22 from the Annenberg School for Communication at USC and worked with Fortune 500 companies specializing in human behavior change and cognition for over a decade before becoming an entrepreneur. CTO Steve Krause is a full stack e-commerce engineer with 20 years experience and is a 3-time CTO, including a previous startup eventually acquired by ESPN. ShoppingQuizzes.com is the second company they have built together.


Visit Ecuador! The wonders of Quito & The Galapagos Islands with #JoysTravelAdventures 7/29 - 8/6/15 #travel

By Joy A. Kennelly

61142-004-2E4A5A9E Galapagos-reptiles

We're offering a 25% discount for our 8 day tour because we don't want anyone to miss out! Includes 13 meals, all hotel stays, all activities in Quito and Galapagos Islands, international travel between Quito and Galapagos Islands, and more! More details here: http://bit.ly/1Ja4b45 

Very happy to announce the final Ecuador: Quito and the Galapagos Islands itinerary for July 29-August 6, 2015 is finally ready for viewing for those whose vacation time is flexible, enjoy spontaneous adventures, and those who want something completely unique and special for their summer escape.

I've run the itinerary by a few friends and family who travel extensively, or who have actually been to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, and their response has been very favorable.

Here's my favorite response to date by my accomplished friend, Dr. Alice Villalobos who has lead tours to the Galapagos Islands in the past. She is a Hermosa Beach and Woodland Hills Veterinarian who runs Pawspice and Animal Oncology Consultation Service. (I took this picture of her for an article years ago which she still uses on her About Us page.:)



Dr. Villalobos said, "OMG!! Your Trip to the Galapagos is GREAT!"

My parent's friends who traveled there years ago told my Mom, "From the description, It sounds lovely!"

My Aunt, who is very erudite and well-traveled, responded, "Your description makes the trip sound very inviting and fun. People can opt out of activities if they wish to. Good write up, Joy."

Hm_img1 Blue-footed-booby-galapagos-islands-bird-sula-animals180

Now I can't take all the credit because my tour counterpart and I worked very hard to create a customized excursion that would allow us to enjoy the eclectic art-filled sights and sounds of bustling Quito with the relaxed, fascinating views of wildlife you will see nowhere else in the world than in the Galapagos Islands, all while staying in the beautiful Silberstein hotel properties.

Here's some highlights of the trip I posted on Linkedin for you to see too. Click here

Only $3,000 and includes meals, hotels, transportation on Quito and Galapagos Islands, entry fees and more as notated.  $304  Single Supplement if private room for one person is requested. 

For the comprehensive itinerary to consider joining us, please use passcode "JTA Ecuador 2015" to sign in here as well: https://docsend.com/view/ktziddd 

Why a Publicist is invaluable to your business by Joy, a multi-award winning PR & Digital Marketing Specialist

By Joy A. Kennelly

What people may not realize about me since they see me smiling and joking around all the time and tweeting out silly tweets, is when it comes to business and getting paid, I'm dead serious. I don't take myself seriously, but business? Dead serious.

If someone doesn't pay me on time or in full, it used to cause me to become white-hot angry and react in a rage because it felt like such a violation against me, all my hard work and efforts on behalf of previous clients, but now, I'm more measured about it.

It's why I like the new Rhianna song so much. I feel you gurl!:)

It is one of the main reasons I got out of PR. When you're a sole proprietor and your business is in building people's reputations and brands, they often don't recognize the intangible components behind what helps build their company, nor do they realize their payment helps make or break you staying in business or not.

A publicist gives someone a veneer of credibility because if a publicist says someone is of value, then that usually means the client is newsworthy otherwise, why waste your time repping them? There are some unscrupulous publicists who will just take anyone's money even if they know it won't go anywhere, and some clients I took on thinking they were newsworthy which the media said, no, not interested, but for the most part, the newsworthy value of whatever you will be repping for the next few months is something you look closely at before signing someone up. 

PR is also sales and if you can't sell them, then your reputation is affected too.

You don't want the client to be mad at you, nor do you want to be mad at yourself for not getting any media hits, or opportunities. It still happens and publicists acknowledge that news cycles, interest levels, trends, and major news happening all play a part in why something doesn't get picked up, but rarely do clients because they don't understand media cycles, or that they're just not right at the moment.

I worked with a co-author team on a screenplay book they had written and pitched my heart out for them. We didn't get much during the time we worked together because it's such a niche topic, but then six months later a radio show I had pitched who does book reviews called and wanted to speak to my clients. I passed along the information and felt vindicated because I had felt that media outlet was perfect for them, it just wasn't the right time.

I also lived in NYC during the time John F. Kennedy Jr. was killed in the plane crash with his wife. Imagine having an event on the same night as his funeral! His death threw out the window all the hard work myself and the top indie entertainment publicity company I was freelancing for at the time had done because no one in the media or general public cared, it was all about JFK Jr's death and the crash.

And we had HUGE media outlets attached to come too. But our event was the same night as a moment in history and there was no way we could compete.

Stuff happens.

Art is so subjective, it's one of the reasons I quit representing artists too. I may think something is amazing, they might have had a huge following in the past, but times and interests and taste changes. It doesn't matter how many celebrity friends you have who bought your art in the past, if art critics aren't interested now, they're just not interested and it won't change their minds.

The other reason I dislike doing PR is people didn't value my connections or what I brought to the table through who I know and am connected to.

I'm a Native of California, grew up in the South Bay, have lived in Santa Monica and Hollywood almost my entire life, leaving for school in Montana and Seattle, again for work in New York City; and new experiences in Atlanta and startup goals in Vegas. I've also worked on the production of an event for Acura in New Orleans, and thrown numerous travel and entertainment events in New Mexico, Las Vegas, Atlanta, and numerous Los Angeles events in entertainment, technology, fashion and for clients since high school. 

As a result, my reach is broad, diverse and nation-wide. I can connect with anyone I've worked with in the past and ask for advice, referrals, recommendations and more because I have a good, solid reputation of doing good work, working hard and getting things accomplished. I work with similar caliber people and have collaborated with numerous friends and colleagues on projects, clients, events and more over the past 10 years as well.

That's why, when I build someone's brand, they're not just sitting in a vacuum where no one cares about what they're doing, people are curious because I'm involved. They know I work on projects, companies, brands and individuals I believe in.

I'm connected to over 5,000 people on Linkedin and that's in all industries, all levels of business, and across the nation. Linkedin used to list what that computed to, but I can't find it right now, but if memory holds true, if I post something as a status update, then it reaches approximately a million people by virtue of the network and inter-relationships of everyone I'm connected to.

When I was working for the JW Marriott I used to post a weekly blog I wrote about the Marriott on my Linkedin profile and the sales department saw an immediate upshot of over $1,000,000 in new business a month by virtue of being on the radar of the people I know. They didn't realize the correlation, but I know it because they'd not reached that sales goal prior to my publicity efforts.

That's why when someone thinks, oh you just took copy we provided you and posted it, there's no value in that, it makes me realize they don't understand my value and it's time to re-educate them. Any monkey can post copy. It's the style, the way it's placed, it's the grammatical correctness and everything else that goes into a presentation that makes something work or not. It's the images, the connections, the brand overall.

It's where the finished product is presented, to whom and by whom...

That goes across anything you're doing, but especially in business because people judge you on your online presence more now than ever.

If your IMDB is out-of-date, if you''re not on any of the normal social media platforms, at least one, if your name doesn't come up in search results, if nothing newsworthy is revealed when people search, then they wonder what's wrong with you and your business and if what you say is true about yourself.

But if you have a quality Linkedin profile (in certain industries) then investors take you more seriously and you find the backing you need for your company faster and easier. And if you have people vouching for you, like a publicist or representative who is well-respected, or the media covers you and your brand, even more so when you're not as well-known in certain circles the PR person runs in or the investor is new to your company and industry.

People think I play around by going to parties at night, but what they don't realize it's very strategic. When you're seen in the right circles with celebrities, then you're invited to other events with that caliber of attendees which opens other doors to new opportunities. It also legitimizes your business, your brand and you as an individual for the media, the circle of influence you're in, and in the general public.

It's all part of branding and sales.

I used to work with an actor who had been typecast as a gay character in a popular TV show for five years and couldn't find work because back then, being gay wasn't as popular and how many gay characters does a project normally need? Not that many.

As a result, he hired me and we began working on turning his brand around to that of a bad guy because that was his goal. We worked together for a year and a half and his final audition, they invited him in to audition for a gay character based on his past role that typecast him, but because we had done so much work on rebuilding his image as a bad guy, they hired him to play a bad guy after meeting him.

We did this by attending numerous red carpet, A-list events and getting him out there with beautiful women as beards, attending macho events, and creating an amazing online presence for him using my Page One Google blog and blogging about everything we were doing which raised his SEO and visibility. We used the pictures he got from the red carpet to build more buzz with media we pitched and achieved and also worked on his image for headshots too. I was the stylist on some of those shoots and events which I enjoyed.

Soon the quality of events and opportunities for him professionally became better and better. We even got him a write-up in the Los Angeles Business Journal. An actor, who knew?:)

He had been immensely famous in Italy prior to moving to the states and understood the PR game which is why he was agreeable to hitting two and three events a night just to be photographed on the red carpet as we worked to get him known as a bad guy and as someone who was viable and newsworthy.

We parted when I had a car accident that prevented me from attending future events and repping him due to my injuries which was heart breaking because I really enjoyed our working relationship and felt like I lost a best friend.

But what I've found in these situations is that every time something happens (an injury, a fight over money, or something else) that causes the end of a working relationship, it opens doors to something new and better. Eventually life comes full circle and I re-connect with the person again in a different way and for a different, forward-moving reason.

And with more mutual respect.

This actor has gone on to a tremendously successful career when he added producing and directing to his resume and used the foundation we created to build his brand awareness to launch into that realm faster too.

You may recognize the name, Domiziano Arcangeli...

I know PR & Digital Marketing like the back of my hand. However, I became tired of being disrespected, marginalized, and discounted for my hard work and decided to pursue something else that brought me more satisfaction, building my own travel brand and company.

I will still pick up an occasional freelance client here and there, but try to keep the focus on what I love, building my travel business. Plus, my hands were damaged working for the JW Marriott and I physically can't do all the work involved in that realm without a lot of pain, even a year later. I'm getting closer to finding relief, but for now, it's still an issue. If I do it now, it's with help and I manage it more than do the tedious work.

Time to do something that requires different uses of my expertise, experience and connections!  And my hands.

Like producing, hosting, and phone sales. And building a travel company where women will enjoy participating and expand their lives through the power of travel. I find the connections, experience, reputation and branding I've done in the past comes into play in this realm and also all the event producing I've done over the years as well because you operate out of knowledge, rather than fear and you're doing something at a much higher level and with higher level connections having worked up to it over time.

Reputation, connections, experience aren't built over night. They take time, nurturing, and doing the right thing. However, what's interesting is your reputation and online presence can change overnight though too. It pays to watch yourself very closely as a result. Don't damage what took you years to achieve with one stupid action. Because social media isn't forgiving, and it's immediate.

Actions you might have gotten away with in the past because no one was recording your actions or documenting the activity publicly, is now under a microscope 24/7. Being a celebrity in this day and age I think is even harder because of social media. Yes, it's a great tool to build an online presence, but man can it also damage it. 

And that's all she wrote. Wanted to get this off my chest because it has come up again and needed to vent a little.:)

Onwards and upwards. Living and learning... Always learning and growing.

Observations on Women in Business gained from conferences, books, interviews and more #Startups #Entertainment #Tech #women #mydayinLA

By Joy A. Kennelly

After wrapping up work for a national professional women's organization where I spoke to hundreds of women in all industries, in all levels of their profession, in all areas around the country on a daily basis; attended numerous amazing conferences and special events with panels of female tech founders, entertainment professionals and executives at all levels of their business over the past six months; and read about women who have achieved major success in their fields, I have discovered the following observations to be true about women in business:

1. Those who are majorly successful are part of numerous organizations that enhance, support and provide networking within their chosen field, not only with women, but also men. In addition, they volunteer, sit on boards, and are extremely philanthropic overall whether in support of their own non-profit endeavors, or those they choose to support financially, or with their time.

2. They generally are extremely well-educated with many holding numerous degrees and/or certifications, especially African American women.

3. Many started out in a completely unrelated field and fell into their current profession where they discovered a passion, skill and expertise they developed over time, becoming more successful as they grew in knowledge and experience. 

4. All are passionate, driven, ambitious, hard working and believe in their career choices regardless at what level, what industry or what area of the country they reside in.

5. As women overall, we all struggle with finding balance between work and personal life, whether that means single, married, or otherwise involved.

6. Many women rose to the top of their careers only to discover how unsatisfying, soul-draining and unhealthy a lifestyle it was and completely changed careers to find satisfaction doing something completely different where they once again became successful, but in a more balanced manner.

7. Almost all credited their spouse, or a mentor, in helping them achieve their success.

8. Almost all wanted to achieve and develop their careers when asked future plans, but those who didn't, generally only had a high school education, didn't value advancing themselves professionally on any level, and were very satisfied with status quo and/or ready for retirement. 

9. Women in sales or real estate, were more savvy with negotiation than those who weren't and often asked for, and received, the better price as a result. Many upper-level professionals sniffed out the dishonest business dealings of the company I was working for and declined the offering immediately which was a relief to know not all women are as gullible as might be believed.

10. Most women's default when they didn't want to do something was to say they needed to check with their husband, but when the price point became more comfortable, they suddenly became more autonomous in their decision making process. 

It's been a fascinating sociology study starting with the first panel of all female executives I heard during a conference on the Santa Monica Pier all the way up until now.  

SusanPaleyI took the time to follow up with Susan Paley, ex-CEO of Beats by Dr. Dre because she was most interesting to me during TechWeekLA (next one coming up this November fyi.)

I'm always interested to learn how someone builds their brand into a global success, how they gain the partnerships, publicity and name recognition, and how they achieved their own personal level of success.

Our conversation was enlightening, interesting and answered all these questions and more.

She had met Dr. Dre before, connected again at a CES conference, they went to dinner with a bunch of other people he worked with, he saw her passion and business savvy, got her on board and provided "access at a level that was insane."

She was part of the branding relationships with artists and connected the headphones to athletes during the World Cup who wore them incessantly creating a natural phenomenon unheard of without paying for product placement.

Beats By Dre Headphones_All Colors


Here's some examples of the headphones and relationships she helped cultivate during her time as CEO.

Susan said they had to be careful of who they partnered with to avoid bastardizing the brand like OP did in the 80's because then it became valueless. When Roxy approached them there was "authentic core-synergies in how each brand approached the market."

Roxy JBL Audio Gear Beats By Dre Pill Wireless Speaker_Nicki MinajAs far as reasons companies become successful, she said it's important to start off with a great product, a compelling value proposition fulfilling a consumer need and a simple idea.

It was nice to hear her validate PR as a huge piece in brand building and also to hear her validate that social media works hand-in-hand with overall marketing efforts. So many people still don't understand that fact for some reason.

Part of their success with Beats by Dr. Dre she attributed to giving away product to influencers, and as Jimmy Iovine, his partner, said tongue in cheek, "I know a lot of people." (He may wish he didn't know the Monsters CEO now that there's a huge lawsuit going on between them. Susan left the company years prior fyi and is now working in the car industry integrating music branding still.)

The main takeaway from our conversation and from other marketing gurus I've heard speak since, is the benefits of co-branding since it creates so much more access and opens up distribution channels an entrepreneur, startup, nonprofit or brand may not otherwise achieve on their own.

This leads directly into the cool Scion MotivaTOUR event I recently attended at Smashbox Studios where CoolHaus Co-Founder, Natasha Cole and Ludlow's Cocktails Co-Founder, Freya Estreller, really impressed me, although all the speakers had something of value to say.


Again, they developed both their businesses through strategic partnerships and Freya's entire talk was on what they use to determine whether or not to partner and how their current partnerships have benefited them. 20150430_194404(Please excuse the quality of this pic, it's more to showcase one such partnership. I was actually working for The Hollywood Reporter at the time and enjoyed the benefits of this marketing drive.:)

It was interesting to learn the criteria, depth and breadth of what other companies were willing to provide if they believed in their offerings. They have PR and distribution through key partnerships that leverage their brands into markets they want by simply sharing equity.

Novel concept.

Freya and Scion Event Organizer

I was extremely impressed with both of them because I remember being pitched CoolHaus as a product years ago and it's awesome to see the success they're having now. I'm hoping to have a one-on-one interview with them soon to pick their brains more and learn more about developing partnerships. 

On a more personal level, it was also very encouraging to hear my "fellow" female tech founder friends share their personal stories (Nanxi Liu, Enplug, Founder, and Espree Devora, WeAreLATech, Founder) at the amazing Digital Women event at Cross Campus Pasadena because even though I've known them for years, I hadn't heard certain aspects before.  20150306_151301

Digital LA Producer, Kevin Winston, always pulls together a great bunch of panelists and this conference was no exception. (Register here for his upcoming Silicon Beach Fest June 24-27, 2015 asap because it always sells out.)

I may have complained about the lack of professional women at conference panels in the past, but apparently people are listening because now it's not just me singing the praises of the tech scene in Silicon Beach for women, but also another female VC Investor I recently heard speak at the Digital Hollywood event this past month.

But I digress. 

20150306_153940What I enjoyed about the sharing Nanxi, Espree and also Elvina Beck, PodShare, Founder, gave was how personal their stories were. I learned how Nanxi approaches networking and pursuing her goals and how she has accomplished the success her company has had.

Starting out in an apartment where they all lived and worked together to now traveling the world speaking, fundraising and developing strategic relationships while running a very successful company. (I've written about her before here and she's on my advisory board.)

I learned how much influence Espree's father had in her development as a business person because he never allowed her gender to be a hindrance and always encouraged her to go for it. I think that's why she's the dynamic entrepreneur she is today. Her mother's influence is also seen in her willingness to speak and help those just starting out, and even those of us a little further along the food chain who also need help.  20150306_152417

I recently was drowning with everything I had going on and reached out to both of them for advice and was very happy to receive the support I needed after being so vulnerable and admitting I didn't have it all together and needed help.

That's what our Silicon Beach startup community cultivates, what it's best at doing, and why I like living back in LA. It's just a different vibe and intent which is encouraging and supportive of all, not just a few, like other places I've lived.

20150306_133827It was nice to hear more female investors speak during the Digital Women event too because so often there is a token female VC, but as Alyse Killeen, Investor at March Capital Partners agrees, there's so much more we can do to support all women, not just those who look like us. Alyse is big on being inclusive to African Americans and Hispanics too which I admire seeing as she's lily white herself.:) 

I do believe the more women speak up for themselves, the more we raise awareness of issues that are happening, the more men will see the value of what we're saying and make changes necessary since it benefits the entire eco-culture, not just women.

I especially enjoyed attending the DGA's Women's Steering Committee Presents: WSC 35th Anniversary: Celebrating the Pioneering Women Directors of the DGA because I've been involved in entertainment longer than technology and know many female directors, including my good friend, Martha Cotton seen here with another friend, Pina de Rosa10671376_10152551979943600_3952187923829011001_n

It was so inspiring to hear the founding "mothers" so to speak of the whole female directors movement in Hollywood because so many younger women take for granted the privileges and opportunities those who fight for our rights from years ago earned for them. 

First the original group of women who made the changes spoke, then they honored female directors who carried on the torch and are making a difference today. It was fascinating to hear their stories, relate to their struggles, hear the humor and the hardship involved with pursuing your dreams and goals.

Very inspiring on so many levels. Entertainment is another sector that is a boy's club and very difficult to break into, but we're making headway slowly, but surely.

20150429_110011Seeing how many female professional groups Victor Harwood has included in Digital Hollywood was also very encouraging. I've known of him and his conference for many years and saw friends I always see at such events and have known for years too like Linda Sherman, and enjoyed hearing new people speak too. 

I especially enjoyed hearing a panel entitled, Living the Life: Women Entrepreneurs, Lifestyle Innovators and Disrupters with these accomplished women: 20150428_104408 Anne-Marie Roussel, Venture Partner, IlluminateNina Simosko, Chief Product Officer, NTTi3Devery Holmes, President & CEO, Spark MarketingMelissa Palazzo, President, Ant FarmMiss Kris TurnerJen Mojo, founder, Paper Dolls; and Lisa Kraynak, Founding partner, Propelle partners, Moderator.

It was phenomenal to hear women at these levels speak and not on topics that didn't mean anything to the audience like child raising, although it was touched upon, however, the main focus was on business and it was so refreshing because it was so high-level and honest!

I finally felt like I was amongst my peers and those I could learn from because they've been in the trenches a while and have overcome their own personal, as well as, professional struggles to achieve the success they have now.

It was truly inspiring.

Plus, the Ritz Carlton MDR venue was so lovely it also was inspirational. Don't you agree? 20150428_091523 20150428_135348

Overall, it's been great to be back in LA and in our tech and entertainment scene although I've been taking time off from the majority of events to focus on building my own business since there's only so many hours in the day.

Time waits for no man (or woman) and you have to put first things first.

This won't be the end of the evolution of women's involvement in the tech or entertainment sphere and I hope to continue reporting, living, changing and experiencing it firsthand for many years to come. If all goes well, I will have an even more to share from the entertainment perspective soon too. I'm ready to get back to the creatives.:)

#JoysTravelAdventures videos, events, MVP & updates for your reading pleasure #travel #tours

By Joy A. Kennelly

Joy's Travel Adventures Launch

Recently launched a Meetup site for Joy's Travel Adventures to gauge interest and within a few days had over 50 members. We continue to grow and it's been fun meeting the women offline and learning more about their travel interests to help refine what we offer.

Here's the link in case you're interested and would like to join us: http://www.meetup.com/Joys-Travel-Adventures-Global/ 

Our next event is called 50 Shades of Selfies with the Style Club which you can find out about by clicking the link to our group above. Join us and make sure to RSVP on our group page to be added to the list.

Website MVP

My goal is to take this beautiful rendition of what our full website will look like created by my amazing Polish team and build this out once I find the right developer here in the states. This is what I envision for the website with a proprietary matching service women will join for a behind-the-scenes, private social networking community to keep confidentiality, privacy and security issues managed.

It will also require approval for inclusion which creates an exclusivity for member only events, offerings, and tours.

Joys_adventures_main_v2a-01 version I did choose

I've also been working on a variety of quick, 20 second videos to showcase some of our travel adventures which you can watch here: http://flipagram.com/thejoywriter

Here's my latest: 


I've also created an app and have submitted it for approval. So, yes, a lot going on behind-the-scenes creatively, but also in other realms.

I've also been working on the following:

1. Refining my Executive Summary with the assistance of my advisors

2. Working on financials for the business which has become clearer and clearer now that I have an actual travel group to visualize expenses and income with.

3.  Applying to numerous accelerators which is almost a full-time job in and of itself. Made it to a first interview with a few of them. Fingers crossed.:)

4. Taking classes to help refine my travel video concept because I still see this as a TV show since there are really no travel shows for women and Anthony Bourdain's style of traveling just doesn't cut it 100% of the time for females. We need to see traveling we like to do as females, not always eat Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern either. We want to see Fashion, Food & Fun like my tagline says.

5. Pitched over 100 cable, network development executives and others regarding my travel show for women and had quite a few accept my Linkedin invitation, thus opening the door for future communication once I apply what I've learned in my classes for creating the show bible and budget.

6. Been working on finding more advisors because you can never have enough people helping you move forward towards your goals and why wait for an accelerator to provide them, when I can successfully seek them out myself professionally via Linkedin?:)

Oh, and speaking of job, also looking for work that I can do without further injuring my hands until I find investors willing to come alongside and grow my vision to allow me to hire more people to help me.

Balancing a lot, but feeling more driven now than ever because I have a personal deadline to fulfill. I'm not going to let my injuries hold me back from achieving my dreams and goals. No matter what JW Marriott Las Vegas thinks or does.

Say a prayer and wish me luck! 

Follow up to thoughts on #startups lead by women in #tech via @Newsweek #SiliconValley article cc: #WhiteHouse

Very interesting to read this article in Newsweek this morning entitled, 'What #SiliconValley Thinks of Women.' Here's some of the shocking highlights I learned in case you don't have time to read the entire article, but I hope you do. It's time this misogynist crap changes because it is the 21st century after all, right?

"It’s (Silicon Valley) the sort of place where one of the valley’s 'most-eligible bachelors,' (in what twisted reality?) Gurbaksh Chahal—an entrepreneur with companies valued at hundreds of millions of dollars—is shown on a home security video beating his girlfriend for half an hour. (He received no jail time, pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor and received 25 hours of community service and three years’ probation.)

It’s a community in which the porn-inspired, “drading” college tweets of Evan Spiegel, the CEO of Snapchat, go public; where a CEO’s history of domestic violence has no repercussions but female executives get fired for tweeting about sexist jokes they overhear. It’s a place where companies routinely staff conference booths with scantily clad “code-babes” and where women are so routinely sexually harassed at conferences that codes of conduct have become de rigueur—and the subject of endless misogynistic jokes on Twitter.

It is still the kind of place where investors can tweak women who ask them for financing with barbs like 'I don’t like the way women think. They haven’t mastered linear thinking.' This was how one investor turned down Kathryn Tucker’s pitch for RedRover, an app that helps parents find kid-friendly things to do, which has since launched in New York, San Francisco and Atlanta."

"At Tinder, a male co-founder (and ex-boyfriend) sent abusive texts and yanked co-founder Whitney Wolfe’s title because, she alleged, he told her having a woman on a board 'makes the company seem like a joke.'" (Really? Really? Tell that to Padramsee Warrior Chief Technology & Strategy Officer, Cisco; Jessica Livingstone, CoFounder/Partner, YCombinator; Gywnne Shotwell, President & COO, SpaceX and on and on and on.)

"A recent report on women entrepreneurs by the Kauffman Foundation identified the chief challenges to female entrepreneurship. Researchers interviewed 350 female entrepreneurs, and most cited “lack of available advisers” at the top of their list. Female professional attrition is only one reason for the scarcity of mentors for younger women.

Another is that women who stay in the game beyond their late 30s may be less subject to sexual harassment than their younger counterparts, but they are sidelined by virulent ageism in the industry that especially—but not solely—afflicts women." (EXACTLY!)

In an interview with MIT Technology Review in December, she (Shanley Kane) said venture capitalists talk about the need to get 10-year-old girls into science in order to bring up the numbers of women they will fund, but don’t fund the ones already in the industry. 'We are not getting hired, and we are not getting promoted, and we are being systematically driven out of the industry,' she said." (What role models do you young girls have? Only vapid bloggers or fashion CEO's who perpetuate the myth that women's only contribution to society is how they look, not how they think and contribute in other ways.)

..."the valley’s big venture capitalists are almost entirely male. The top five don’t have any female senior partners, and VC partners are 96 percent male." At least Silicon Beach HAS female investors and Girls Raising which is encouraging to acknowledge. Maybe I shouldn't be so hard on the men who produce the LA-based tech conferences because at least they're trying to reach our gender. Way to go guys.:)

"VCs are not funding women. According to a study by Babson College, only 2.7 percent of the 6,517 companies that received venture funding from 2011 to 2013 had women CEOs. Meanwhile, the Kauffman report found that female-run startups produce a 31 percent higher return on investment than startups run by men. (Even Chris Sacca has seen great results funding women.)

(And this may be the most telling of all which a lot of my young tech girlfriends don't seem to comprehend just yet): "Vivek Wadhwa, a (male!) Silicon Valley investor, diversity coach and author of Innovating Women says women must approach male VCs with caution and awareness: “'Women don’t get it. The young women don’t seem to understand the reason why they get their calls returned so easily and get small amounts of funding is they are dealing with hungry men. These are disgusting perverts. Some of them used to be my friends—sexist jerks. And I know how they speak behind the scenes.'"

There's so much more in this excellent Newsweek article which I hope you will take the time to read and then share with others who might benefit from the enlightment. This attitude and shutting out of women must change. It just must.

And not in the We must, we must increase our bust mantra-style.:) But seriously, get a clue dudes. This isn't the age of Mad Men and you need to give us credit where credit is due.

That's all. This has been a PSA against misogyny because there aren't any made right now and this topic is just as valid as domestic violence because this is an assault against our economic society. 

Heavy sigh, I feel better.:)


#Introspection on my #startup life as I prepare for an intense #goal session tomorrow.

There are days I really hate my former employer, JW Marriott Las Vegas Resort & Spa, and these days are becoming more and more frequent as I struggle with finding out what's wrong with my hands, waiting on the judge to determine if/when they will take responsibility for the pain and suffering I experienced working for them and now live with on a daily basis, and my inability to do my normal work as a result of these injuries which is causing me emotional, physical, and financial stress on a daily basis.

I often wonder if the main Marriott company knew how their franchisee was handling injured employees what they would say about it and if they would step in.

If it was my brand, I would.

I know I post a lot of fun activities I'm involved in, I tweet silly stuff, and I rarely talk about this issue, but after being rejected by the one female founder conference I really wanted to attend when I attend so many male-dominated tech conferences down here, I'm extremely disappointed and feel like opening up because  it's real, the Las Vegas Marriott needs to be outed and I'm tired of the BS.

I needed to hear other female founders speak to gain strength from their experiences and now I won't. Listening to a live stream just isn't the same. It just isn't.

I know I'm on the computer a lot, but I also take long spells where I'm off to allow the pain to subside and to allow myself a mental break from pain. Do you know how debilitating it is to have constant pain? Do you know how terrifying it is to think you may not have use of your hands for the rest of your life when typing, communicating, writing, social media and emailing is how you've made you're living for the past ten years? Or to constantly be put off by doctors because they can't figure out what's causing the pain through normal testing?

Do you know how slow working with pain makes your progress when you're having to work around a disability? Or how difficult it is to find work that won't tax your hands further? Nearly impossible. And being told by someone to just get a job, damage my hands more and don't worry about the future,  you need to make a living.

Give me a break. I'm nothing without my hands.

Have you ever experienced not making enough money to get ahead enough to save money for a deposit on a place and discovering ID theft is screwing up your credit and you're turned down by every place you apply to for two months solid because you operate on a cash basis, there's no credit history and your good credit has been ruined by a thief?

And you're having to pick up the pieces and fight to get things straightened out again? All while being unable to work in your normal field because your last employer illegally fired you while you were injured and around the same time you discovered a lump in your breast?

That's been my life for the past eleven months. (And no, no cancer thank you Lord.)

I have been mulling over and over in my mind how I address the fact there are so few female role-models in the Santa Monica tech scene that are seasoned professionals, not newbies like so many panels I see boast. I've been trying to think of a polite way to discuss it, address it, and whatever which is why I still owe an article on the great interview I held with a female who accomplished amazing career achievements in the music industry and now car industry months ago.

I just can't find a polite way to say what I'm about to say. I've really thought about it, but it is what it is. Here's my thoughts - take 'em or leave 'em.

I don't want to hear from some 20 something who easily received funding because the investor probably either wants to sleep with her, or did, and now she only has to worry about looking cute to make sure her investor is happy with her and she'll continue to be able to grow her company not worrying about paying rent, buying food and everything else everyone else worries about on a regular basis while also trying to build a company when they're not receiving funding. 

And then, the one time there is an amazing panel of female entreprenuers where we can actually gain wisdom, the female moderator decides to ask them "How do you juggle motherhood with running a business?" Totally ignoring the fact the majority of the female founders in the audience are single, no interest in kids, or don't have children and she's merely asking out of selfish reasons with complete disregard for the audience and their interests. 


WHO CARES? I don't. Many others didn't either.

If I want to hear how a woman juggles motherhood and her career I would go to a Mommy Blogger conference, but that type question doesn't belong in the Santa Monica tech scene. Neither does asking, "How do we get more females interested in STEM?" You want to know how? You introduce them to role-models they can aspire to become like, not ask questions that no one in the audience cares about.

If I cared about that issue I would attend a PTA meeting for heaven's sake. I DO NOT HAVE CHILDREN I'M RAISING. I DO NOT LIE IN BED WORRYING ABOUT YOUNG GIRLS GETTING INTO TECH. You want to know what keeps me up at night? Wondering how I can work, build my business, and take care of my hands as best I can. I also worry about being a good role-model and mentor for the young women I meet who are interested in tech through the tech group I run.

That's how I give back and that's what motivates me when I'm having struggles. 

I also wonder where all the amazing tech women I read about in ELLE Magazine's Women in Tech Awards or hear are being honored by Women 2.0 (all up in Silicon Valley.) Where are the female leaders here in Silicon Beach? Why aren't they included in the primarily male-dominated Silicon Beach tech conference scene? I don't want to hear from peers, or those with less experience, I want to hear from women I can aspire to become.

You choose any woman on either of those lists (ELLE & Women 2.0) and you will blow any 20 something founder male or female speaker out of the water. Bring them down or invite them to come at least...

I don't want to see a token female moderator out of the hundred tech speakers (all male.) I want to see women discussing how they run their businesses, what makes them uniquely qualified to do what they do, how did they handle lack of funding or respect for their accomplishments, how do they deal with sexism, ageism, racism, where do they pursue training or networking or whatever to find their success, what books do they read, what drives them to stay in a male-dominated industry, where do they find support, who mentors them? (excuse the grammar - not in the mood to be correct right now.)

All those questions and more interest me. You put those kinds of women in front of young girls and I bet then you will see STEM grow for young girls, but not by asking questions. And not by always bringing out the female investors because the financial industry is only one aspect of the tech scene. There are so many qualified female engineers, CEO's, trainers, etc. we could be hearing from. Don't be lazy men. Dig beyond your comfort zone when planning a conference or a panel and seek out women who intimidate you, who might be more skilled than you, or who will speak their mind.

Show young women and girls, don't tell.

Give women and girls someone to aspire to become. Let them see the future of their lives through the current lives of women they see on panels speaking. Let them hear their voices and their struggles reflected back to them. Let them understand they are not alone. They will find mentors. They will find investors willing to bet on them. They will find success in an industry dominated by men.

As I write this, I write for myself as much as I do for the young women who may read this. Life isn't easy. But it just doesn't have to be this difficult does it? I am still disappointed I won't hear the female founders speak, but maybe it's for the best. Maybe I'm not supposed to be in tech any more. Maybe it's time to think of a new dream/goal. It's been two years. I've given it a great shot. I've worked hard. I've done my research. I've paid my dues. I've built many aspects of this business slowly, but surely.

But maybe it's not enough. Maybe there's something else for me to do. 

I just don't know what. 

That's all. I'll probably regret typing so much in the morning, but writing is how I process things and especially when I'm deeply disappointed. Crying only relieves certain amounts of pain. 

Sometimes you need to share it and by sharing it, feel free of it. I hope this is true. I also hope by attending the goal seminar tomorrow I walk out with either a refreshed vision for my business, or a completely new vision/goal. Because I'm tired. I'm tired of fighting to survive. 

I give up. I'm waving the white flag....

Not my will, but thine be done God. 

Amen and Good Night.





Announcing our "Vegas Escape" #travel video #JoysTravelAdventures - see the side of #Vegas only locals know

By Joy A.Kennelly

Very happy to share our completed "Vegas Escape" travel video with everyone. We had so many people help make this a reality and wanted to give them a shout out here, in addition to on our YouTube Channel. 

But first, without further ado, please enjoy a side of Vegas only locals know and that I reveal here in our "Vegas Escape" travel video:


I want to first thank Francis Vincent, my cameraman of Production Central Group, for catching my vision and coming alongside me to film all over Las Vegas in the quick five-day shoot we did together. It was great to have his son, Winston, and my good friend, Shawana, participate too.

We worked together so well, I'd love to go back to shoot a longer version whenever we find funding.

And now in no particular order, here are more of the wonderful companies, people and places who helped create this show with their support. Please visit their locations and tell them Joy's Travel Adventures introduced you to their services!


Las Vegas News Bureau 
Wynn / Encore Las Vegas 
The Smith Center 
MGM Resorts International
Tivoli Village 
Faiss Foley Warren PR 
Fashion Show Mall 
Marc Abelman, Arts B18 District
Las Vegas Canoe & Kayak Club
Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area 
Lake Las Vegas Westin 
Michelle Olds, Lake Las Vegas
The Arts Factory
Happy Panda Toys 
Big Ern’s BBQ
Sonrisa Grill 
Artist Q – Wang Viva 
Las Vegas Skate Co 
Tesoro Imports
Winky Designs 
Cathay Las Vegas 
Jessica Galindo Fine Art & Leather Couture 
Chill Spot
Megan Barker, Singer/Songwriter 
Downtown Project
Downtown Container Park 
Jana's Red Room 
Island Girls Designs
Chris Builder, The Stratosphere 
City of Las Vegas 
Peace Art Studio 
Mingo Calloso, George Harris, Mingo Kitchen & Lounge

And if you want to visit the people we interviewed, here's their info too. Big thank you to all of them. We were sorry we couldn't include everyone we interviewed and hope to include them in the future:


Karen Sanders, Tourquoise Door 
Chef Robert Solano, Mingo Kitchen & Lounge & Mundo
Marty Walsh, Trifecta Gallery
Javier Anaya, Pinches Tacos 
Leslie Marroquin, Garden Grill 
Chef Roy Bass, Those Guys Pies

Lastly, big shout out to my Editor, Dustin Elkin, for his patience with all my tweaking and requests to pack in as much as possible to showcase everything I wanted to share with viewers. He took raw footage, b-roll, and captured my vision in his own unique way after I explained what I was going for.

I loved how he was able to get the edits to fit the beats of the songs I chose because I'm not an editor and would never have been able to do this on my own. He also had to work with technical difficulties presented with audio on all my interviews and standups which he overcame with Francis gracefully and without complaint.

We included footage from some of my past shoots and I want to thank and recognize those folks as well:


Dustin Elkin, Editor
Nelson Brann, Videographer/Editor, Film-Alchemy
Mike Tringe & Sara Akhteh, CreatorUp
Tony Le, Videographer
Steph Belsky, Associate Producer

I hope we thanked everyone and if anyone feels left out, please let me know and I'll include you because we want everyone who helped us to be recognized.

I love the music we included and want to throw out a big thank you to the artists as well. They really helped set the tone, pace and vibe. I have loved their music since first hearing it and couldn't wait to share it with the rest of the world because it's so fun and hip:


"Happy" is a song written, produced, and performed by American singer and producer Pharrell Williams from the Despicable Me 2 soundtrack album.

"Angel in Blue Jeans" is a song recorded by American rock band Train for their seventh studio album Bulletproof Picasso. The song was written by Pat Monahan, Amund Bjørklund, and Espen Lind, and was produced by the latter two as well as Butch Walker.

"Stolen Dance" is a song by German duo Milky Chance and was released by Lichtdicht Records and Republic Records on 9 May 2014.

"Do I Wanna Know?" is a song by English indie rock band Arctic Monkeys from their fifth studio album AM.

" Rather Be " is track #1 on the album Rather Be by British group Clean Bandit and features vocals from Jess Glynne. It was written by Napier, James John / Patterson, Jack Robert / Marshall, Nicole.

And last, but definitely not least: 


My Parents, Pat & Dianne Kennelly, for their loving financial support and belief in me

Here's to the future and creating the website for Joy's Travel Adventures next.

Stay tuned. More to come. The adventure is just beginning!

@KeepinOnFilm - one #music doc you must see! #Jazz #TerryClark @QuincyDJones @JustinKauflin

By Joy A. Kennelly


Even though my hands hurt and I still need to write about my experiences at MAGIC, I feel compelled to share my heart about this achingly beautiful story about a loving relationship between a jazz great, Terry Clark and a blind pianst, Justin Kauflin, called Keep On Keepin' on.

If you are following me on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram you have seen my many posts, but it's not enough room to share how much this film has deeply, deeply moved me and my desire to see the world feel how this film made the whole audience feel. 


If there's one word to describe it, it's just love.

Love between Terry Clark and all his students, but especially blind pianist, Justin Kauflin, Quincy Jones and the two Aussies who spent years of their lives honoring a man Alan Hicks (the Director) played drums with, Terry Clark, to create this award-winning documentary, shot by Cinematographer, Adam Hart.

I sat in my seat next to three other women I've never met before and we were all weeping by the end. I alternated between tears and smiling throughout the entire film because there were so many aspects that moved me and made me laugh. I wasn't alone either.

We were so blessed to actually hear how they made this film and the influence Terry Clark has had on their lives in a special live performance by Justin and Q & A with all three - Justin, Adam & Alan sharing their struggle to capture their mentor and friend. (I taped both songs, but can't figure out how to transfer from my phone to my computer since I'm tired. Maybe tomorrow.:)

Crew  of Keep on

Terry is in his 90's now, had to have both his legs amputated, yet continues to inspire and love young musicians with even more vigor now that the poison has left his body. He's influenced the lives of so many jazz performers like Wynston Marsalis, Dianne Reeves, Quincy Jones, Miles Davis and the star of the film, blind pianst Justin Kauflin (seen here with his guide dog, Candy, and Cinematographer/Executive Producer, Adam Hart.

Adam & JustinHere's the official trailer to give you a peek into what's in store if you take the time next weekend to see Keep on Keepin' On at either Arclight in Hollywood, or Landmark Theatre in West LA (which we all hope you really do!:) 

Official trailer

I grew up with a father who played all kinds of music for us. I heard Duke Ellington who Terry played with, and a whole slew of amazing, eclectic musicians which has shaped and molded my love of music since a child. 

That's why I loved this film so much because it tells you the history of jazz through the eyes of a man who lived with many, many musicians I admire. When I was in my jazz phase I would go to every Al Jarreau live concert I could get to and heard David Sanborn open for him, but the most amazing opening act, who I didn't really understand or appreciate at the time, was Miles Davis. He was opening for Al on a New Year's Eve and I took my friend Carol, who shares the same New Year's Eve birthday as I do, and we loved it.

Talk about a great memory.

I grew up in the South Bay and my sister was very much into the punk and ska scene which I grew to appreciate because of her influence. I also have always loved R & B, classical, and love music of all genres because each reminds me of a special time in my life.

Jazz is part of our rich American history. I hope you will enjoy this film from all the different levels I did and leave a comment if you saw it this weekend, or next weekend. Also, buy Terry Clark's book which is his autobiography available here if you don't have a screening in your city.

I'd love to hear if you do. I feel with all the horrible news in the world, like the numerous beheadings, wars, and more, the world needs a little more love like this film brings to everyone who has seen it. 

And with this, I must bid you adieu and Good Night.

Sweet dreams.

I'm taking one of my painkillers and I know I will.:)


What I gained attending Global Innovation Fellows upon returning to Los Angeles, CA

By Joy A. Kennelly

Recently I had the pleasure of participating in the Global Innovation Fellows Program. From what I gathered, it was started to bring students out of the classroom and into the real world which is a great initiative.

When I first moved back to Los Angeles my good friend, Ariel, invited me to join him only three days after my arrival and because nothing else was going on, I decided to dive in head first; especially when I heard we were visiting Google and Facebook up in Silicon Valley!

Wouldn't you have wanted to go too?:)

We started out at Junior Achievement where I bumped into a friend, Marisa Materna, whom I've known for over 10 years and had lost contact with.

Joy Kennelly and Marisa Materna, Special Events Director, Junior Achievement

The guest speakers were great, but have to admit, re-connecting with an old friend definitely was the highlight of that day.

Joshua Freedenberg (Motivational Speaker, Author of “The World’s Next Top Leader”) and Brian Williams (CEO, Junior Achievement)

Although all the speakers were excellent and inspiring too. Recognize anyone?:)

Anna Ouroumian (CEO, Academy of Business Leadership) Center surrounded by this year's Global Innovation Fellows Class of 2014

Throughout the week we were able to visit Idealab, CAA, the Fashion District and many more businesses across Los Angeles. It was wonderful to hear amazing speakers and visit companies I've admired for a long, long time. 

The only bummer was trying to get from place to place logistically due to LA traffic and consistently running an hour behind for each session which ultimately resulted in certain sessions being canceled due to the delays.

In addition, choosing to drive up to SFO without knowing where to stay and arriving at 2am only to be expected at our first session by 8am when we were still an hour away was very difficult; and it was very disappointing to learn two key speakers for that morning were canceled last minute who I really wanted to hear.

Overall though, a good experience. The program is free, fairly new, run by only one person, and you get what you pay for.:)

I've never understood why women don't travel more, but after experiencing this last-minute trip with no guidance or assistance from the organizer, I now have a deeper understanding of what those who've not traveled much experience which was beneficial all on it's own for my travel company, Joy's Travel Adventures.

It also opened my eyes to the tech community's need to have assistance with travel which is a great side benefit too. Sometimes life's greatest frustrations turn into life's greatest opportunities and provide insights into needs not normally revealed in normal, every day experiences.

The opportunity to hear all the wonderful speakers: Freddy Nager (USC Professor & Founder/CEO, Atomic Marketing); Richard Pan (Entrepreneur/Investor); Gustavo Demoner (UCLA Professor & Brazilian Innovator); Kent Smith, (Executive Director, LA Fashion District); Russell Hancock, (President & CEO, Joint Venture Silicon Valley); Alex Maleki, (Business Development, Idealab); Philip Leslie (Engineer, Google); and more...see first hand how companies are run while visiting them on-site, learning new things, and taking tours of Google P1060092and Facebook was awesome, especially for a social media junkie like myself!  P1060075

I felt like I was on a technology high my whole time in Silicon Valley seeing Twitter headquarters, hearing speakers at Kiva

Justin Renfro of Kiva and Rob Campbell, Global Innovation Fellows Leader

and Code for America,

Code For America

and squeezing in a visit with my friends, Roger Royse and KP, my co-organizer with StartupMind, too. 

Kaustav P. Chaudhuri aka KP, Co-Organizer of StartupMind with myself, Joy Kennelly

I learned a lot, made some great connections, spent time with new friends and had a blast touring SFO as a tourist with Ariel and Avanti, my road trip buddies,

Avanti Armendariz, Joy, Ariel Barco

which was a fun way to blow off steam after the intense week.

Logistically, there are things to improve,  but program-wise, Global Innovation Summit on the surface is an excellent concept. Great cross-section of business, non-profit and variety of industries. I wish the organizer well because he's onto something positive.

That's why my interest is piqued in attending the California Connections Fellows program through the Southern California Leadership Network/LA Chamber of Commerce because of the opportunity to meet with civic leaders, learn from experts in their fields in their business environment, and in this instance, the ability to network with government officials also, which is always beneficial to one's career.

Plus, the cost of the program includes all travel logistics!:)

I heard someone say once they don't believe in criticism which I think is missing the point if it causes you to improve and correct what needs to be changed to make something stronger and provide a better overall experience for all involved.

Plus, if everyone blows smoke at you and you never hear the truth, what good does that do anyone?:)

That's one reason I'm excited to begin working with two new members of my Joy's Travel Adventures team, Lana Leazer and Shar Martin. I've come to realize I can't do everything on my own, other people have skills, connections and experience I don't have, and by combining our backgrounds we will develop something even stronger for female travelers.

More on this later, but next up is my MAGIC experience which was so overwhelming as a newbie, I had to take some time to digest everything I saw and all the wonderful brands I met. Very cool to see the huge variety of clothing, accessories, shoes and booth decorations. Very fun too!

I posted pix from both experiences on my Facebook fan page which you can review here: http://www.Facebook. com/JoysTravelAdventures

MAGIC awaits - Can't believe I'm back in Vegas so soon!:)

By Joy A. Kennelly

I still have to write about my experience participating with the Global Innovation Fellows where I was able to visit and hear speakers from Junior Achievement, CAA, IdeaLab, Kiva, Facebook, Google, Fashion District and much more.

However, now about to jump into the MAGIC show which will be all-consuming too. Blogging will have to wait!:)


My thoughts and tribute to Robin Williams #suicide, #comedy #entertainment #GetOnUp

By Joy A. Kennelly


I wasn't sure I wanted to write about Robin Williams' death out of respect for his family and because my feelings were so close to the surface when I found out he died. I love comedy, comedians and laughing which is why his death hit me a little hard even though I never personally met him.

Reading comments from a friend that he was "weak" and hearing a news anchor had called him a "coward" compelled me to write because I have contemplated suicide in the past and I don't consider myself either of those terms.

I think if you're artistic you feel more, you are more sensitive, you care more and often are more misunderstood than those who are "normal" because we don't experience life the same way "normal" people do. I think this meme floating around captures it best:

Alone-robin-williams_2It's easy to judge famous people, or anyone for that matter, who chooses suicide, but if you've never walked in their shoes, felt their pain, or lived their life, who are we to judge?

Yes, it's awful. Yes, what about his family? Yes, he could have found help, but rather than judge, maybe consider volunteering for a suicide helpline and hear the pain people are experiencing on a daily basis. Or really mean it when you ask someone, "How are you doing?" 

Or if you're contemplating suicide yourself, reach out for help from friends, or from the National Suicide Prevention Lifelife: http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org/

I know I did oh so many years ago and it helped me gain perspective. I haven't felt suicidal in so long I know God heals and I know you can find help if you seek it.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4  Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

I recently saw Get On Up - the amazing story of James Brown's life and when I left the theater, I cried. I couldn't imagine growing up with the pain and struggles he experienced. Yet, I have had my own pain and struggles. We all do.

You are not alone.

Cov 1-Ebon0914INK_spot (1)

Here's a little insight into the film and the actor who played him courtesy of Ebony Magazine: "Chadwick Boseman, who epitomized the legendary Godfather of Soul, exclusively tells EBONY he originally didn’t want the role that is now giving him Oscar worthy buzz.

"When my manager brought me the script, I didn’t even want to read it because I knew attempting to play James Brown would just be crazy," cited Boseman.  However, once he received the role, beating out 20 actors for the part, he was completely dedicated to capturing the essence of Brown.  “He was a complicated man, both good and bad.  Once you understand the reasons for his dichotomy, it’s easier to grasp who he was.”

If you haven't seen the film, please do. Brilliant acting. Oh, and on a side note, tonight at the Hollywood Bowl is a tribute to James Brown if you're interested. More info here.

That dichotomy is what made Robin Williams great as well. I will never forget watching Mork and Mindy growing up, or seeing Dead Poet's Society, another film where I left the theater and just drove around crying it impacted me so deeply. Or who can forget Good Morning Vietnam or Mrs. Doubtfire? Or any of his roles?


The depth and breadth of his talent for playing such a diverse range of roles is what set him apart and why I think people are grieving so much more than normal. He was a comedic genius, an icon of entertainment and someone who shaped the world in which we live through his talent. I always hate when people discount entertainment as shaping our world when it's so obvious it does - both for good and for evil.

I liked the fact Robin Williams was patriotic too. Have you seen this clip before? I never had and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did:


It's so easy to judge those who are famous, but I ask that you consider the fact we're all human, we all struggle, we all face demons and struggles no one else knows about.

Sympathy, empathy and compassion go a lot farther than judgement. 

Matthew 7:1-2  Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and  with the measure you use it will be measured to you.

And I leave you with this thought because right now I think the world needs a little more love and little less judgement for those who suffer: 

John 13:34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.  

I love you. God loves you.

Robin Williams rest in peace. May your life and death not be in vain.


Watching a Sex & The City Marathon. Perfect time for my Great Love Debate review.

By Joy A. Kennelly

Had a blast in LA and wasn't able to find time to write my follow-up blog until now. Summer Jam TechLA was great and I shared highlights on my Instagram, Twitter, Foursquare and Facebook accounts. Look there or search #TechLA via Twitter.


I'm dictating my Vegas Great Love Debate review so hopefully won't have a lot of corrections to make cause boy sex is kind of funny. See what I mean? I said voice activation, not boy sex. LOL!!!!

The seminar itself was interesting, although it did get dominated by a 20 year old who thought he knew everything after being in one relationship which got a little annoying after awhile and should not have been allowed to speak so much.

I think I had enough when he went to the front, whipped out his cell phone and was actually reading notes he wanted all of us to know. It was all I could do not to start laughing out loud at his audacity and youthful ignorance. Instead left the room to get something to drink.

My friend got a lot out of it while I enjoyed having the books that I've read on relationships confirmed live. Plus, it was fun to hear diverse opinions from the panelists, especially the guys.


I have to admit, I was surprised at the small male turnout being that this is Vegas, but it is a very transit town and perhaps everyone isn't into relationships, more hookups. Or, the women are so easy there are guys who don't think they need help. LOL

I think I enjoyed the one-on-one conversations I had with some of the matchmakers more at the after gathering at The Yard House and hanging out with my friend.  20140712_220334

I am also looking forward to speaking to one on a more personal basis soon since I'm determined to find out what is holding me back from finding love.

Here's some fun pictorial highlights from the event. What I find hilarious is that for some reason, the second batch of solo shots all the matchmakers look sad. They were not though in person. We just caught them thinking I guess. My friend shot a lot of my pix.:)

P1050911 P1050913 P1050920  P1050929P1050921 P1050928

The Great Love Debate is coming to @CityofLasVegas this weekend! #love #dating #relationships

By Joy A. Kennelly

I've been reading a lot of relationship advice books since I have the time and have enjoyed telling my girlfriends what I've learned and which books I recommend. We're keeping the library busy! And bookstores too (if you're an author.:)

You can see some of my reading suggestions on my Pinterest board here: http://www.pinterest.com/thejoywriter/books-i-ve-read-and-recommend/

As a result, when I saw this event on Match and then received the press release, I knew it was a fun event to attend and cover. I used to attend "love" seminars and groups while living in Los Angeles under Dr. Pat Allen, but she's so coarse I eventually stopped going. There's only so many F-words I can tolerate, especially coming out of a 60 year old plus woman's mouth! No matter how good her advice is!

So, it will be interesting to see what this show/event reveals. I think I'm beginning to get a handle on what I've been doing wrong all these years and what I also have been doing right which is hopeful.

I believe in love. I believe in soul mates. I also believe when the time is right and you keep putting yourself out there, you will meet "The One." 

I had a good friendship with a guy I  wanted a future with because he's kind, super smart, handsome, successful, yet down-to-earth, humble and generous, but alas and alack, I ruined it which is why I'm now reading the book, It's Not Him, It's You! LOL I want to learn from my mistakes and grow as a person because I also believe it will benefit every aspect of my life, professionally and otherwise as well.

Plus, I don't want to make that mistake again. I really liked him and enjoyed the mental connection we shared which I haven't felt in a long time. Miss that and him, but trying to move on. Hence this event...

I want to meet someone special because traveling is so much more fun when you have someone to share it with which is one of the many reasons I've been working on building Joy's Travel Adventures to help women find travel partners.

If we're single, there's no reason to wait on a guy to have fun!:)

There are so many single women who never travel out of fear of the unknown, fear for their safety, and not knowing what to do and see  when they go somewhere, which is why I'm excited to help them experience the empowerment and self-knowledge that comes when you travel. Also, introduce them to all the fun things there are to do!

Travel opens your mind, your heart, and your soul in ways staying at home will never accomplish. It makes you more flexible, more tolerant, more interesting, and more open which is one of the reasons I love exploring new places. I always come back a better person for the experience, even if negative and difficult. 

This morning I dreamt I was traveling in Europe in August and meeting up with travel friends there. I hope this is one dream that comes true because I'm ready for a new adventure.:) In the meantime, I'll continue working on my travel episode for Las Vegas and introduce my fellow female travelers to the wonderful opportunities to explore Nevada they may not be aware exist. 

And share with them what I learn through attending this love debate. Maybe I'll see you there? All the details follow. Enjoy! Tell 'em Joy sent ya!Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: gld1




LAS VEGAS, NV (July 7, 2014)  –  Hello Products  in partnership with Match.com, is proud to announce THE GREAT LOVE DEBATE tour will be coming to the Baobab Stage Theatre at Town Square in Las Vegas on Saturday, July 12th.  10300045_723212184391517_1057574653270104392_n

This lively, interactive Town hall-style discussion and debate on the current state of the date will be comprised of an audience of 100 of Las Vegas’ most eligible bachelors facing off against 100 of its most dynamic single women to answer the question, “Why is everyone still single?”

‘We are thrilled that this unique, entertaining, and engaging event is coming to Las Vegas,” says the event’s moderator, Kimberly Seltzer, nationally-renowned Therapist, Image Expert, and Dating Coach. “This city’s singles are extremely passionate about love, the evening will be a really fun and exciting way to raise questions - and find answers!”

The July 12th  show continues the summer leg of a 45-city national tour, and features a panel of the region’s most prominent relationship experts and influential voices including;  Crystal Cardoso, Las Vegas Dating Expert and Relationship Specialist;  Kristine Givas, National Director at the World’s Premier Matchmaker, Kelleher InternationalBrian Howie, Award-Winning Producer and Author ofHow to Find Love in 60 Seconds; and Arden Leigh, Author, Relationship Strategist, and Women’s Coach.


Tickets for this event are $40 and are available online at www.greatlovedebate.com. Doors open at 7pm for cocktails, showtime is at 8pm.  The first 50 people to use promotional code LOVE20 at checkout receive $20 off the ticket price.

 Seating is extremely limited (100 per gender), all attendees receive admission to the “Meet, Greet, Mix, Mingle & Match” party which immediately follows the show at Yard House10513445_10152522458524222_2496803903043909572_n

 For future tour dates and panelist information, please visit www.greatlovedebate.com.


Happy 4th of July Everyone! Here's where to see #fireworks and #celebrate in @CityofLasVegas

4th of July events in Las Vegas

Received this information from a friend of mine who works at one of the major casinos in town. Here's a list of all the fun Las Vegas fireworks events if you're in town and curious about some options.

Also, visited Lake Las Vegas yesterday and they're hosting a huge 5th of July party with live music from 2pm - 10pm, children's activities from 4pm - 7pm and fireworks at 9pm if you want to keep the patriotic party going. Here's a link with more details: http://www.montelagovillage.com/the-village-at-lake-las-vegas/events/ 

Now here's the official Fireworks list which I'm sharing without fact checking so please verify all information on  your own before going:

"The Vegas Strip and the skies of Southern Nevada will be illuminated with fireworks shows. Here are the places to enjoy fireworks show on the fourth of July in Las Vegas.

Note: July 4th fireworks generally start shortly after sunset so please be advised due to the popularity of the fireworks show, it is best start out early in order to get the best viewing location. Please stay hydrated because this heat will dehydrate you very quickly! 


Caesars Palace Hotel and Casino

As part of Caesars Palace July 4th Celebration, on July 4, 2014 Caesars Palace Las Vegas, will have an
Independence Day fireworks display. Fireworks by Grucci will be shot from the hotel's Roman Tower beginning at 9:15 p.m. The best views will be from the Las Vegas Strip at the front fountains of Caesars Palace.

Caesars July 4th Fireworks
Date: Fri, July 4, 2014
Place: Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, NV

The Linq

Fireworks at The Linq/High Roller
9 p.m.
Tickets from $49.50
The Linq

High Roller riders will be able to view two fireworks displays starting at approximately 9 p.m. at Caesars Palace and 9:30 p.m. at the High Roller lot. Take in the view of the Las Vegas skyline as the city celebrates the 4th of July. Premium holiday priced cabins will board from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m., general admission and special packages for the 30-minute ride include: 

$49.95 per person – general admission tickets with complimentary beverage during 8:30 to 9:30p.m. premium holiday skyline viewing window. $2,500 - private personal cabin during 8:30 to 9:30p.m. premium holiday skyline viewing window with open bar for up to 25 people inclusive of tax and fees.

Fireworks at Mandalay Beach
8 p.m.
Tickets from $20
Mandalay Bay

The sky above Mandalay Bay Beach will light up red, white and blue this Independence Day with a dazzling display of fireworks and a musical performance by the local classic rock band Phoenix. Guests of all ages can dig their feet into the sand or let the waves wash over them while enjoying the extravaganza Friday, July 4.

Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets priced at $20 and family four-packs priced at $60, not including applicable
service charges and taxes.

The Stratosphere Casino Hotel and Tower
This year, The Stratosphere Casino Hotel and Tower will present its annual citywide fireworks display and "Independence Pool Party" on Friday, July 4, 2014. The world-famous Fireworks by Grucci, Inc. will produce a display that will be launched from the Stratosphere's North parking garage and visible anywhere in the Las Vegas Valley. The display will start at 9 p.m. and will be 10 minutes in duration.

Fun on the Fouth at the Stratosphere
Date: Fri, July 4, 2014
Location: Stratosphere Casino, Hotel & Tower, Las Vegas, NV

Station Casino’s 2014 “We Love Locals” July 4th
Fireworks Blast

The Station Casinos Las Vegas 2014 fireworks shows will go off on the east and west sides of town at Green Valley Ranch Resort and Red Rock Casino Resort. The fireworks show will last approximately nine-minutes.

Green Valley Ranch Resort & Spas
2300 Paseo Verde Pkwy, Henderson, NV 89052
Date: Fri, July 4, 2014

Red Rock Casino Resort Spa
11011 W Charleston Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89135
Fireworks will begin at 9 p.m. Friday July 4, 2014

The Smith Center/Downtown Vegas
The show will get underway at 9 p.m. The Las Vegas Philharmonic performs.
General admission is $10.


Primm Valley Fireworks
Primm Valley Casino Resorts, Primm, Nevada

Primm Valley Casino Resorts will be celebrating Independence Day with a spectacular fireworks show. Starting at dusk, the night sky will be lit with the vibrant colors from the display. The sixth annual show will be set against the desert scenery and away from the city lights allowing viewers an extravagant show. Families are encouraged to arrive early for prime parking spots and fun at the resorts. The best viewing location for guests is located in the Star of the Desert Arena parking lot at Buffalo Bill’s Resort & Casino.

Henderson Fourth of July Celebration
Friday July 4, 2014; 6 PM - 9:15 PM. Fireworks Show at 9PM
Mission Hills Park
551 East Mission Hills Drive
Henderson, NV

Check with M Resort too because they have a 4th extravanganza, but I can't copy the info for some reason.:)

4th of July 2014 Nightclub and Pool Club Parties

All-star DJ lineup at Wet Republic
Date: July 4 - 6
Where: MGM Grand
Wet Republic pool club kicks off 4th of July weekend with Afrojack on Friday, July 4. Calvin Harris and Burns take over on Saturday, July 5. The weekend closes with Tiësto July 6 

The Stratosphere Casino Hotel and Tower Independence Pool Party
4th of July Level 8 Pool Party
Time: 6pm to 11pm
Date: Friday, July 4th
Admission: $10 + tax per person
Activities: Live Concert – Zowie Bowie • Fireworks Spectacular • Cabana Special
Must be 21 to attend pool party. The Independence Pool Party will be located on the Stratosphere's pool and recreation deck on the eighth floor of the Premier room tower. 

4th of July Tips

July 4th is all about the fireworks and if you're visiting Las Vegas for the holiday you'll want to know where to see the displays and where to find other all-American entertainment.

Fireworks locations can vary from year to year but typically you'll find them at several locations around town.

The Stations Casinos properties, which are local casinos across the valley, usually have fireworks displays at several of their resorts like Sunset Station and Green Valley Ranch in Henderson and Texas Station and Red Rock Hotel Casino in the north.

If you head downtown, you can see an electronic fireworks display on the Viva Vision canopy above Fremont Street.

The Las Vegas Philharmonic usually performs a 4th of July concert, which was held last year at downtown's Smith Center.

For a more small-town 4th of July experience, try Boulder City's Damboree celebration. There’s a pancake breakfast, games, a parade, and of course, a large fireworks display.

The City of Henderson also holds an annual 4th of July celebration with live music, games, activities and a fireworks show.

For the best view of any fireworks in Las Vegas, visit one of the many bars around town that offer views of the valley. 

Try Foundation Room at Mandalay Bay, Ghostbar at the Palms or Voodoo Rooftop Nightclub at the Rio. For restaurants with a view, there's Mix at THEhotel at Mandalay Bay, Alize at the Palms or the Eiffel Tower Restaurant at Paris."

Happy 4th of July Everyone! Be safe and please, please don't drink and drive! Las Vegas has a horrible reputation of more deaths of pedestrations than even NYC or Los Angeles. One death every six days last year!

Don't believe me? Read this article from the Las Vegas Sun: Las Vegas deadlier than Manhattan: Saving pedestrian lives on our streets

Be careful out there! Love to you!:) Happy 4th of July! 

@ks_saturday kicked off Summer Solstice early by throwing a party at The Roof on Wilshire

Kate Spade Saturday, the brand known for channeling the spirit of Saturday 7 days a week, kicked off the summer solstice early by throwing a party for select fashion media and celebrities.

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Guests celebrated the weekend at The Roof on Wilshire, which was decked out Kate Spade Saturday style with carnival games, bright yellow cocktails, and models showing off the latest collection.


(Wearing Kate Spade Saturday’s Cut-Out Flare Periwinkle Dress along with Hyper Pink Envelope Clutch)



(Wearing Kate Spade Saturday’s Overlap Top in White & The Skinny Jean in Blue Dust Splatter along with the Gold Lock Crossbody in Pale Mauve, Espadrille Flats in Crosswalk Stripe, and Confetti Statement Necklace in Black/White)



(Wearing Kate Spade Saturday’s Criss-Cross Dress in Black and All Along Mini Satchel in Tawny)



(In Kate Spade Saturday’s Leather Terracotta Drape Jacket and a Pale Mauve Drawstring Pouch Bag)



(Wearing Kate Spade Saturday’s Mini A Satchel in Hyper Pink)

Image012 (1)

The party proved that #Saturday Is the best day of the week, hands down!

@JanelleMonae performed intimate show @StRegisNewYork part of Starwood's Hear the Music, See the World Concert Series


Last night, R&B icon Janelle Monae performed an intimate show at The St. Regis New York as a part of Starwood Preferred Guest’s Hear the Music, See the World Concert Series.


New York socialite Olivia Palermo was spotted having a fun night out on the town letting loose and dancing in the crowd during Janelle’s one-of-a-kind performance.

497105095_JM_7062_F6DEA27525EADB541C26B6AC2E045DB8 Image006

"Monáe is known for her captivating music that zips listeners from genre to genre — in just one album she can take you from R&B and funk to rap, psychedelic rock and disco. But the singer-songwritter is also widely respected for her style.

Monáe always wears what she calls her uniform: always a jacket and pants, all her clothes are black or white and her hair is done up in a Fifties-style quiff.

That uniform has caught the attention of fashion royalty like Andre Leon Talley, editor at large of Vogue, who in 2010 included her in an editorial. In August this year, Monae also became a COVERGIRL, joining the ranks of Christie Brinkley, Tyra Banks and Sofia Vergara who have become spokesmodels for the beauty brand.

During her acceptance speech at BLACK GIRLS ROCK! 2012 Monáe spoke candidly about her family and said she wears her uniform in honor of them.

'When I started my musical career I was a maid, I used to clean houses. My parents—my mother was a proud janitor, my step-father who raised me like his very own worked at the post office and my father was a trash man. They all wore uniforms. And that’s why I stand here today in my black and white and I wear my uniform to honor them,' Monáe said, fighting back tears.

'This is a reminder that I have work to do, I have people to uplift, I have people to inspire,' she said after explaining that she grew up in Wyandotte County, 'the poorest county' in Kansas City." (To read more of this article, click here. I really admire her.)

497105095_JM_8099_5706B68577D557CAAF11D108F6E0BC3BMonae and Palermo bonded after the show during the VIP meet and greet over their signature “reds” – Monae known for her signature red lips and Palermo for her signature red nails.


Oscar memories as I watch this year's show...

By Joy A. Kennelly

Watching the Oscars here in Vegas and memories keep flooding back because I wish I was in Los Angeles; although, enjoying my time with my little Mom as she visits me...

My first introduction to the magic of the Oscars was while running my short film festival years ago when I would go scout Academy Award nominated short films at the Academy and entice all the filmmakers I liked to participate in my film festival.

Amazing, emerging talent and such excitement! Because my short film fest covered animation, live action, documentary, experimental and spec commercials, I attended numerous screenings and heard numerous speeches. Always loved it. Still follow some of my filmmakers because they've gone on to such great careers in film.

Another time I was transitioning from one career to another and was an event server for numerous high-end, Hollywood catering companies which provided me the opportunity to serve during the Governor's Ball. Talk about a surreal moment.

Michael Moore had won for his documentary and was holding court in the center of the room; I was trying to feed Adrien Brody appetizers while everyone was coming up to congratulate him on his win and ask about his kiss with Halle Berry; and saw Chef Wolfgang Puck in action in the kitchen. A special highlight was being included in the formal picture of the Governor's Ballroom with all my servers which I believe they display somewhere.

I'm part of history folks.:)

Attending huge Oscar parties put on by friends at cool restaurants and voting on who would win is also a special memory. I made such good friends and connections I still have to this day from those parties too.

Then, a few years later, firmly ensconsed in my new career as a personal publicist to numerous up and coming actors, musicians and writers, we would attend all the Oscar Gifting Suites and Osar parties we could get into too. Different experience and wonderful all in its own.

Loved all the pampering, celebrities you'd bump into at various functions held all over the city in mansions, hotels, private homes, and more, all my publicity and film friends I'd see from the various years, hanging out with my clients, and all the fun we'd have. 

There's just something special about this time of year in Hollywood. 

And when I actually worked the Oscars as a production assistant, I saw everything that went into creating the extravaganza from behind-the-scenes, like the tenting of the red carpet to avoid the rain, the setting up of all the Oscar statues around the Kodak Theater, the flowers, the Governor's Ball, the media war room which determined where media would stand for interviews and who was more important than the other, the long, narrow tunnels behind the Oscar stage, the actual Kodak theater, all the food that would be served which Chef Wolfgang Puck prepared for the TV crews I was escorting, and all the actors discussing their awards with the media after they had won.

We were sworn to secrecy and forbidden from taking any pictures which was killing me, but I did walk away with new friends I stay in touch with to this day, an official Oscar baseball cap and poster. Years later, working at the Hollywood Reporter, I discovered an Oscar program from that night someone was giving away and added it to my collection of memorabilia.

I remember escaping the madness of that Oscar evening due to an old ankle injury acting up preventing me from wearing heels 14 hours non-stop and watching the show with dear friends in their nearby Hollywood home on their big bed as we gossiped and talked throughout the entire show.

Miss them.

Now, I'm watching from my Mom's hotel room in Vegas and creating my new memory of the Oscars. I was invited to two parties this year and almost went home, but felt time with my Mom was needed because she hasn't been to visit me since I moved here and drove out with me.

Sometimes you need to touch base with home on new soil rather than go back to feel home in person to help establish new traditions, new touchstones and new experiences. 

One year I would love to attend the Oscar show as a guest and someone who has created something worthwhile, but for now, I will continue to creating my short travel videos and continue to learn and grow as a storyteller on my own.

I am inspired by the creativity, dedication, determination, and focus of everyone involved in this year's Oscar show and the fashion! Love the fashion!

One of these days, one of these days...:)

Denzel Washington and Brooks Army Medical Center! He's a hero in my book after hearing this.

Remember this next time you walk up to the ticket window of your local movie theater with $10 (or higher!:) in your hand to watch a film.Image (4)

The Media (accidentally?) missed this one! Please read this: The troops overseas would like you to send it to everybody you know. (I did not write this, but love it which is why I'm sharing it with you.)

 Denzel Washington and Brooks Army Medical Center. 

Don't know whether you heard about this, but Denzel Washington and his family visited the troops at Brooks Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas,(BAMC) the other day.

Image (3) This is where soldiers who have been evacuated from Germany come to be hospitalized in the United States, especially burn victims.

There are some buildings there called Fisher Houses. The Fisher House is a hotel where soldiers' families can stay, for little or no charge, while their soldier is in the hospital. BAMC has quite a few of these houses on base, but as you can imagine, they are almost filled most of the time.

While Denzel Washington was visiting BAMC, they gave him a tour of one of the Fisher Houses. He asked how much one of them would cost to build. Image (2)He took his checkbook out and wrote a check for the full amount right there on the spot.

The soldiers overseas were amazed to hear this story and want to get the word out to the American public, because it warmed their hearts to hear it.

The question is, 'Why do: Britney Spears, Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton, Tom Cruise and other Hollywood fluff make front page news with their ridiculous antics, and Denzel Washington's Patriotism doesn't even make page 3 in the Metro section of any newspaper except the local newspaper in San Antonio?

A true American and friend to all in uniform!  Image (5)
I don't know about you, but I got a little teary eyed reading this. God bless. Remember, there are still loving, kind people in Hollywood. We just don't always hear about them in the media. 

Please share!


Los Angeles Tech Scene alive and well; travel in Vegas going strong too! #LATechSummit #SBF #Vegas

By Joy A. Kennelly

Had a really great week, so much so, slept in till 11:30am this morning after waking up for a few hours earlier. Do I feel rested!:) 


Drove out to LA to attend back-to-back tech conferences, Silicon Beach Fest Hollywood, Idea to Screen and LA Tech Summit which were phenomenal.

You can read my pre-conference write-up of all three events on Tech Zulu here: http://techzulu.com/silicon-beach-fest-hollywood-la-tech-summit-idea-to-screen/

Saw lots of old friends from the scene, made some great new professional connections, and learned a lot too. Plus, had a great time socializing.

I will write more in-depth coverage on those events at a later date, but wanted to give a shout out to the organizers, Digital LA, Tech Zulu, David Beebe Productions and Cornerstone Media, for really amazing conferences asap.

  P1030894 P1030877 P1030920

I'm excited to bring some of my connections to Vegas and Silicon Beach to expand the tech scene in general in a positive manner to benefit all entreprenuers.

Technology is quickly changing the way so many aspects of our lives and these conferences were insights into this reality.  

I will say that one of my favorite personal highlights of attending LA Tech Summit was being hugged by Mayor Garcetti after telling him I was a Republican, but I love him and what he's saying he's going to do for LA.P1030931

What a sharp contrast to our last loser Mayor Villaragosa! 

Mayor Garcetti was described as the perfect Mayor for LA because of his Russian Jewish and Mexican background and many more unique aspects of his life, but I love his true belief in LA becoming great again.

As a native Californian who has escaped to Las Vegas for the lower cost of living, among other reasons, it would be so refreshing to see many of the things he discussed actually take effect, like lowering taxes, increasing traffic flow, keeping filming in Los Angeles, and building out more of the tech scene, among many other goals.  P1030930

We'll see, but for now, let me continue to have my love affair with him because it's not often I agree with a Democrat! LOL Although a majority of my friends and colleagues are liberals for the record. Surprised you, eh? Yes, I am a big believer in hearing all view points, not just what is parrotted among certain groups.

Part of the reason I campaigned to get two Democrats into office in Hermosa Beach a few years back thus sealing my fate of ever working with the Republican party because that's verbotten, but I stand by my efforts because it really helped Hermosa and I would do it again in a heartbeat.

(Here's the blog post I wrote when my candidates I campaigned for won: http://thejoywriter.typepad.com/pure_unadulterated_joy/2009/11/hermosa-beach-city-council-election-results-fishman-duclos-and-bobko-as-of-817pm.html)

The way I look at it, there's value to a variety of opinions, values and creeds. Pick what works, support it and make change happen. Don't get me started on Obamacare though. That my dear, is a sinking ship ala the Titantic and no amount of spin will change my mind.

I hope it dies and the plan Heritage Foundation has offered is considered instead (read it here: http://blog.heritage.org/2013/11/01/the-conservative-alternative-to-obamacare/ and http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2013/10/after-repeal-of-obamacare-moving-to-patient-centered-market-based-health-care

But enough politics. It's Saturday after all, right?:) 


I'm sitting in a cute new coffee shop near where I live called Avery's Coffee as I normally do. Really great people run this place, husband and wife, Sherman and Linda, and today is the Shopping Village launch with lots of fun activities happening thoughout the weekend.

Just met "Elvis" and heard Taylor Hicks of American Idol fame perform too. Come on down cuz it continues tomorrow too!  9401 West Sahara Ave near Fort Apache easily accessible via Summerlin Parkway, Rampart exit.1463960_10151895892548600_843988451_n Here's some pix from today: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.463578420429551.1073741832.412260405561353&type=1&l=cc99d95a94

This is what I love about Vegas. The entertainers are very supportive of their community and often participate in activities that benefit Vegas.

Recently, I attended the Luxury Travel Exchange conference which took place at the Sands Convention Center and was treated to a front row experience of a performance by Rock of Ages both at the event and later that night live and in person. (A little raunchy for me, but overall very fun and enjoyable entertainment.)

P1030168The conference itself was extremely informative and I enjoyed hearing "Big Data" mentioned by one travel professional as key to understanding the luxury traveler. It was amazing to see how technology has allowed travel operators to understand their clientelle so minutely down to their income, their likes and dislikes, what countries are most popular, what services are appreciated, which ones don't matter and more.

What I was also surprised to hear as the biggest feedback of luxury travelers, was the simple follow-up to ask how their trip was very important. Simple courtesy appears to go a long way!

There's a lot more to share, but I have been working on my fan page and this post all day and need to get out!

Enjoy my pictorial essay of the entire Luxury Travel Expo here: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.463604770426916.1073741835.412260405561353&type=1&l=d7850b629d

And while you're there, like my fan page!:) https://www.facebook.com/JoysTravelAdventures


About Time a review and more. Enjoy the read and please see this film!:) cc: @Lukebuckmaster

By Joy A. Kennelly

I'm always glad I'm not a film critic, nor required to see film for a living, because then I feel you lose some of your wonderment and love of filmmaking due to becoming jaded. I know it happened after I ran a short film festival for five years and it took me years to recover.

Now, without that pressure or requirement, I see films I want to see, when I want to see them, and skip those I have no interest in, or desire to waste my time with.

As a result, you almost always see me sitting alone during a romcom, action, or psychological thriller because oftentimes I see films spur of the moment and rarely plan ahead. It's whatever strikes my mood or psyche at the moment.


I also like to see films the first weekend they open to avoid being tainted by what critics and everyone else says about them, wanting my experience to be as pure as possible.

That's why I also will sit in the closer rows of a theater to get away from people who talk and text or otherwise annoy me. I avoid hearing people's chatter as they leave at the end of a movie by sitting through all the credits too.

Plus, I like to read where a film was shot, which of my friends or colleagues might have participated, what elements and departments were required, and what music was played to set the mood. (Normally I'm oftentimes the only person left in the theater, although lately, more and more people stay too.)

In other words, I absorb the movie going experience.

That is why, when I read an Australian critic's view of About Time, I felt almost personally affronted by his casual dismissal of a film I really enjoyed. I felt his desire to have it be more logical and factual on the essence of time travel stripped it of it's magical and lovely qualities.


Yes, going back in time to improve upon your courting techniques is silly, and perhaps manipulative, but haven't you ever wished you could retract something you said, or something (or someone) you did?:) I know I have which is why I was swept away into this make believe world happily and without reservation.

I go to the movies to escape reality, not face it like so many others might when they make their ticket choices. I want to be transported to another place and time and forget whatever is going on in my life at the moment. Perhaps that's why my decisions to see a film aren't pre-meditated or planned ahead, but impulse decisions.

This past week has been filled with doctor visits, DMV frustrations and important business decisions to be made which became overwhelming in my physical state. Now that I've received medication, wise counsel, and good next steps, I feel much more balanced and ready to face whatever life might throw at me yet again.

(Never let a doctor scare you into having an unnecessary surgery and always get a second opinion is all I have to say. Surgery isn't happening any time soon or ever, if all goes as expected. Whew!:)

I needed an escape from my reality Friday. After a missed connection with a friend to attend a party together that night, decided it was time to see a film and forget about my life for a few hours.

About Time sounded intriguing, I've always liked the Director's other films and Rachel McAdams film choices so off I went.  Photo11

I hate reviews which tell you all the scenes you will love if seen in the theater apart from someone else describing them and won't do that now to you.

However, suffice it to say, I loved the dorky courting and bedding, difficult love decision, hilarious wedding, and family relationships that aren't normally explored in film any more.

Family relationships that is.

It's like people come into this world without families and none of their relationships matter in storytelling lately. To watch the love between the father and the son in this film was truly beautiful and heartwarming. I have always loved Bill Nighy's acting and even more so after seeing him in this film.


Who can forget him as the fading pop star in Love Actually? Or in The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel?

He is nuanced, loving, wry and conveys so much simply by virtue of his expressive face and lanky body.

I was enchanted watching him in About Time as I always am. He embodied wisdom, wit, charm and love in ways not normally reflected in film, expect perhaps in The Way, Way Back (another film I adored and recommend you see.)

I also loved the dorky ginger haired Domhnall Gleeson because it was fun to see what men go through when they like someone and the way he loved and cared for his family and friends.  Photo3

I had originally thought the film was simply another love story between Rachel McAdams and his character, and was pleasantly surprised to learn she played a rather minor part in the overall theme.

This film was more about life choices and decisions we make within our families which impact our whole lives which may be why it resonated with me so deeply. I rarely cry, but actually left the theatre and cried all the way home (all 15 minutes) which felt good to release all my pent-up emotions.

Every so often we all need a good cry to move through our current situations and get rid of toxins. The next day I felt much better I assure you.:)

Yes, it's a syrupy love story too, but it's so much more than that and the time travel is used sparingly enough to make it special and fun to watch. I also loved watching the love story between Rachel and Domhnall develop because it's fun to live vicariously.

Who doesn't want to fall in love with love?:) Photo12

Because as the film says, "For me, it was always going to be all about love."

I hope you take the time to see it and share your thoughts below. I would love to hear. But don't just take my word for it, Britist Actress Emma Watson loved it too!:)  

@EmWatson London · emmawatson.com "I had IMPOSSIBLY high expectations for @AboutTimeUK (being a Richard Curtis maniac) - but it was one of the best films I've seen this year."

I do think it's a chick flick and more women will get it than men, if my new Australian film critic Twitter "friend" is any indication, but I do hope men will see it too simply for the father/son relationship. If you had a good relationship with your father it may resonate with you more, but even if yours is strained, it's still beautiful and heartwarming.

I loved this film.

And to motivate you even more, here's the trailer:





United Way of Southern Nevada Presents Women’s Leadership Council Fall Suit Drive 11/1/13.

United Way of Southern Nevada’s Women’s Leadership Council (WLC) will host its 6th Annual “Women’s Fall Suit Drive” from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Friday, November 1 at the NV Energy parking lot at 6226 W. Sahara Ave.

WLCsuitWLC is collecting new and gently-used, clean professional suits and dresses on a hanger and shoes, handbags and jewelry to assist women in need. The drive helps women prepare for career opportunities and gain confidence to succeed during an interview and in the workplace.

Donations will benefit United Way accredited agencies with back to work programs for women. The agencies include Goodwill Career Connections, S.A.F.E. House, Safe Nest, The Shade Tree, Women’s Development Center and HELP of Southern Nevada’s Work Opportunities Readiness Center.

Donations will also be accepted during the month of October during normal business hours at the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino customer service desk operated by Tickets & Tours.

Last year’s drive collected more than 6,200 professional items including suits, dresses, shoes, handbags and jewelry. For more information about WLC and the suit drive, please visit uwsn.org or contact Lawrel K. Larsen at lawrell@uwsn.org or 702-892-2319.