Ugh.  Another kids party invite.  Ho hum.  Pizza here, Pirate Booty there, too much fructose and a bag of stuff made in China that you can’t wait to accidentally toss.  How’d that get there?? But wait.  Hold the phone.  Stop the music.  This one’s different.  Like less candy, more Keith Haring different.  We’ve got an invite to the coolest party of the year, kiddos invited, no sitter required.

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This party is to celebrate the launch of a coloring book so kickin’ you might just poach their copy, or snag a duplicate for your coffee table.  Everything about it screams cool & artsy and is filled with street cred. Shepard Fairey will be your DJ. (Um, the Obama Hope poster?  Yeah, that guy…)  The crafts table is not an abandoned mess of sad little popsicle sticks, but is an opportunity to create modern art with actual modern artists.  And the party itself is a celebration of living, creating, and coloring outside the lines.  We though you might like to go.

Oh, did we mention that it’s free?  And, we’re all invited.  We know.  That thing we had planned (that we can’t even remember what right now), we’re canceling it.  See you there.

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So here’s what’s happening.  Consultant, curator, and all around awesome mom, the purveyor behind the party is Souris Hong-Porretta.  Of course it took a mom to tirelessly trail blaze this long time labor of love and cultivate a collection of creative masterminds, many of whom created works especially for this book.  It’s a coloring book.  (Wait, for us, or for our kids?  Yes.  And yes.)  A coloring book featuring the original line drawings, sketches, and architectural renderings of animators, cartoonists, fine artists, video game artists, graphic artists, illustrators, musicians, photographers, street artists, all contributing what they feel a coloring book should entail . . .and who inspired this enterprise?  Her daughter Lulu.  Naturally.  Because our kids always inspire our best ideas.

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It’s literature.  It’s a creative contemporary collaboration made by a mom.  It’s well-known genius sketched out on each page.  It’s your kid, who’ll bring the color and supply their own creativity.  You find us a better reason to party.  And we’ll give you one more reason to be excited:   you’ll never have to look for another birthday present so long as you live…

So get this party started.  DJ sets by Shepard Fairey and Jega (no Fresh Beat Band found here, folks), book signings by featured contributors, and multiple coloring and drawing stations for your budding virtuoso.  Thirsty?  Hansens Natural and Icelandic Water are providing refreshments (and Adidas is sponsoring too).  Free, evocatively educational, and we don’t even have to pack the leaky water bottles.

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Where’s the party?
Party’s happening at The MOCA Store at MOCA Grand Avenue, the big one downtown, in the plaza by that massive sculpture that’s kind of a party all by itself (seen this thing?).  Parking’s best bet is at The Walt Disney Concert Hall garage: enter from lower Grand Avenue, or 2nd Street.  They’ll charge you $20 to park (ouch), but, they’ll refund you $11 with MOCA validation.  So figure $9 for an afternoon of urbanity, not to mention meet and greets with some of today’s most wonderfully wacky minds.  Suddenly it’s the best bargain in town.

So as long as you’ve parked (and paid)…
The party will sprawl over the bookstore and sculpture plaza, but being that culture is notoriously contagious, when they want to explore the museum, go with it.  Kids under 12 are free (but note, the museum closes at 6, same time the party wraps), and the RENTA installation inside (Para mi gente) is sure to get their dendrites sparking (if the coloring book gets them thinking color, this will have them thinking  words – from hieroglyphs to street graffiti – and presto, with illustrations and words married in their heads, you’ve got an author in the making).

After-partying with your pipsqueak.
When they get hungry, as you know they will, Lemonade at MOCA is right there. With its cucumber mint libations and bounty of seasonal take-aways, it’s an easy place to cop a squat and have a little private after-party, or perhaps an impromptu book club.  Topic: their new favorite coloring book.  And yours.  Discuss.

When: Saturday, September 21, 2013
Time: 3:00 pm-6:00 pm
Where: MOCA Grand – 250 South Grand Ave., Downtown Los Angeles
More info: Call (213) 621-1710 or email storeonline@moca.org
Cost: Zip!

Written by Jolie Loeb, photographs courtesy of Souris Hong-Porretta