SafeLaunch to Announce Contest Winners at Art, Awards Show at Samy’s Camera

“Portraits of Addiction and Hope” portrays perspectives of Santa Barbara County youth

By Blythe Beaubien for SafeLaunch / Published on 04.04.2012

Preventing the onset of the disease of addiction in our youth is the mission of SafeLaunch, a grassroots nonprofit organization that is hosting a special 1st Thursday event, “Portraits of Addiction and Hope,” on Thursday, May 3.

SafeLaunch will announce the winners of more than $1,700 in cash and prizes during the 2012 Media $500 Art and Awards Show from 5 to 8 p.m. at Samy’s Camera in downtown Santa Barbara, 614 Chapala St. First places in art and photography will receive $500, second places $250 and third places $100.

“All of the participants have played an important role in raising awareness of the increased risk that teens have to addiction,” SafeLaunch co-founder Janet Rowse said. “The impact of the personal stories of the people in recovery who participated is evident in the art and photography by these talented students.

The exhibit will feature photography and two-dimensional works of art by local junior and senior high school students who participated in the organization’s annual media contest. The exhibit will remain on display during May at Samy’s Camera.

The event will also feature live musical performances by 2011 Media $500 Contest winners Daniel Schniepp, his new band, Stereo Drive, and Christian Pearson, or C-Rush. Also performing will be the 2012 and 2011 Teen Star winners, and local teen band False Puppet, along with other local talent.

The students’ art and photography will be for sale, with proceeds supporting SafeLaunch and the student artists. Samy’s Camera has produced a full-color book of the contestants’ work that will be on sale with proceeds going to SafeLaunch.

As an official Santa Barbara 1st Thursday event, the public is invited to enjoy the event and attend the award ceremony with the students, their families and friends. Interested members of the community are welcome to attend and learn more about SafeLaunch. Representatives from the student-led Launch Crew and other SafeLaunch supporters will be on hand to answer questions about the organization. Light refreshments will be provided.

The 2012 Media $500 Contest, Art Exhibit and Awards Show is supported by Above All AviationAtlantic AviationFast FrameG.J. Gardner HomesHofmann ArchitectureJordano’sParentClickMarBorg IndustriesMTD Santa Barbara,Notes for NotesParadise CaféPumpflixRincon Broadcasting, Samy’s Camera, the Santa Barbara Rescue Mission, the SB Teen News NetworkSignature Flight Support and The Bank of Santa Barbara.

Honorary chairs of the event are California Assemblywoman Fiona Ma and Santa Barbara County Superintendent of Schools Bill Cirone. Contest judges are Mehosh Diadzio, Rita Ferri, Hunter Howatt, Alison Nigh Strellich and Rafael Parea de la Cabada.

For more information contact SafeLaunch at or 805.283.7233.