Go Ask Mom

What is Baby Loves Disco all about? Find out here

Does your baby have to love disco to go to Baby Loves Disco? Nah. Co-founder Andy Blackman Hurwitz tells us what it's all about.

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Baby Loves Disco
Sarah Lindenfeld Hall
Baby Loves Disco will finally stop in the Triangle on Nov. 5 when its Lemonade Tour 2010 hits The ArtsCenter in Carrboro.
Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for kids. And they are selling out really fast. So if you want to go, get them now. (And I'm not just saying that. They really are selling out fast). The event supports Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation, which emerged from the front yard lemonade stand of cancer patient Alexandra "Alex" Scott, who died in 2004. Since that first stand when Alex was four, the nonprofit has raised more than $35 million toward cancer research.
Click here for tickets.

So you might be wondering what exactly is Baby Loves Disco? Heather Murphy Monteith started it up more than five years ago on a whim. Searching for something fun to do with her son that she could enjoy too, she tossed around the idea of a mini dance party for kids and eventually held one at a club one afternoon. Expecting 35 people, 100 came out. And the idea has only grown.

Heather eventually met up with Andy Blackman Hurwitz. And together they  took the dance parties to the next level. Baby Loves Disco is now across the country and around the world. You can read more about those early days in this blog post by Heather.

Andy took a few moments to answer some of my questions by email.

Go Ask Mom: How has it grown over the last five years? Has it surprised you?
Andy: Wow, how it's grown. The truth is we had NO IDEA it was going to grow. It wasn't supposed to grow. When Heather started in Philly, and I went to see the event, I begged her to let me do it in NYC simply so I could attend and invite all my friends! We had ZERO intentions on it growing or being anything more than something fun for us to do as parents with our kids. BUT I guess the big surprise was a New York Times Sunday Arts & Leisure article that covered BLD in NYC. Once that article came out, we were flooded with emails from around the country asking us to bring the event out of New York. All of our "growth" was fueled by moms (and one dad) that are so gung-ho. They would help us find a venue, volunteers to work, local sponsors, and basically make it so that we couldn't refuse. We'd fly out, "train" these moms (and one dad ;) and then they would run the party every month in their home town with us in the "home office" serving as back up and helping facilitate ticketing, equipment, and content. Not a franchise really, just partnerships with these local moms (and dad). First we went to Boulder, Colo., and it totally sold out. Then we went to Chicago, same thing. Before we knew it, by 2008 we were in 36 cities across the country! Not to mention international events in London, Tokyo, Hong Kong....Dubai!

So to answer your question - has it surprised us? Geeeez, we were beyond suprised, we were overwhelmed! We had no idea this was going to happen - accidental business to say the least! We're still trying to wrap our heads around it and just recently buttoned up the business and started making real "plans" - taking control of the reins, and it's helped a bunch. This new touring model has made a whole bunch of sense for us and we're finally now catching our breath

GAM: What's an event like? What's the reaction from the kids?
Andy: The event is not unlike going to a typical nightclub - except of course ... you're with your kids! We like to keep the basic themes the same - real (adult) music, atmosphere and vibe. But it's child-proofed with chill out zones (toys, books, puzzles) for shy kids that need a break, lots of snacks (within reach of kids) juice boxes, bubbles, egg shakers and DANCING lots and lots of DANCING. Kids reaction goes one of two ways - either overwhelmed with joy to the point of them screaming with excitement OR the opposite - kids freaked out, culture shock, panic. Either way - both sides meet in the middle somewhere and once folks settle in - it's like being at the playground - except, ummmm, with alcohol!
GAM: How did you guys get involved with Alex's Lemonade Stand? Tell me a bit about the tour?
Andy: Actually, Alex's father (Jay) and I coached Little League together this spring. I told him all about BLD (he had known, we'd done events for them before) and he caught me up on Alex's foundation. It just made great sense. They were most interested in the exposure and marketing efforts we could bring to the mix and it's been working out great. The tour has been a dream come true really because with H&M helping subsidize the tour, we are able to go to places we could never afford to go - all for free! Military bases, children's hospitals, random coffee shops, malls (!!!) and of course some of the coolest night clubs in the country. It's been great for the "show" too because we hired an amazing new host and DJ and a crew that travels with us. It's just upped our game, taken the event to a whole new level and to a whole bunch of people that wouldn't have had the chance to see us live. 
GAM: Why should people come out on Nov. 5?
Andy: Well, its a charity event to start. They'd be doing some good karma work. But also, it's just a great way to start the weekend. And the most fun is that it's an interactive FAMILY event. It's not just like bringing the kids to see Barney where you all stare at a purple dinosaur on stage for two hours. Most folks love BLD because they get to do it TOGETHER - win win for the whole family.

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