Growing up living a very modest lifestyle as the daughter of farm workers, Rosie Welmas was familiar with the struggles of a low-income family. For Rosie, playing sports was her way of fitting in and feeling accepted, regardless of her family’s economic status. From the very start, Rosie knew she wanted to help kids who struggled like her to have better opportunities. In 1984, when she moved from McFarland, CA to the Coachella Valley, Rosie knew in her heart, Indio was where she would fulfill her dream.
Over two decades later, Rosie began working as the cheer coordinator for the Lady Bulldogs cheer team. Remembering the struggles her parents went through to enroll her in sports and extracurricular activities, Rosie began to sponsor kids in an effort to help them overcome financial barriers. In 2011, Rosie joined the Coachella Valley Arts Center as a Dance instructor; however, her philanthropic spirit truly ignited when she organized “Rosie’s Kids.” Rosie’s Kids is a non-profit organization that began fundraising campaigns to enable all children in the Coachella Valley to participate in a sport, music, art or dance program.
Family has always been a priority for Rosie and her husband who have raised three athletic sons in addition to a competitive daughter who is a cheerleader and honor student. With the support of her family and the synergy of her organization, Rosie continues to promote the youth of the Valley with her latest event: Rosie’s Kids Got Talent. Rosie explains, “So many talented kids have participated in my programs and had great opportunities to learn and master their skills. They have applied these skills at auditions and this event will further lead them to new opportunities.”
Rosie’s Kids Got Talent is a competition open to all kids and all talents. Rosie expressed she has enjoyed watching the kids compete and has vowed to make this an annual event. “I don’t make any money on events like this, it’s not a fundraiser! I do it all for the kids,” vows Rosie.
After two rounds of intense competition and a handful of crushed dreams, only three young and daring female vocalists move onto the finals this Sunday. The youngest competitor, 6 year old Lydia Sari Rodriguez, has performed in ballet productions of the Nutcracker and has tap danced with Center Stage productions. The second finalist is 14 year old Kourtney Kalisvaart, who is currently a member of the Palm Springs High School Dance team and has performed in musicals at the Palm Canyon Theatre in Palm Springs. The third finalist (also a member of the Kalisvaart family) is 17 year old Kara Kalisvaart, who has performed in musicals alongside her sister at Palm Canyon Theatre and is currently a member of the Palm Springs High School Concert Choir.
Each of the three girls are guaranteed to walk away with money in hand and the excitement and memory of performing on stage at the Riverside County Fair and National Date Festival. The three finalists will be competing for $900 in cash– which breaks down to $500 for first place, $300 for second place and $100 for third place. The judges for Rosie’s Kids Got talent include dance instructor Dr. Mary Archer, a local actor and singer Paul Mackey, and radio personality Chase Martinez of Jammin’ 99.5.
Family and friends will gather around the Magic Carpet stage this Sunday, February 24, 2013 at the Date Festival in Indio to cheer on the final three. If you would like to come out to enjoy the competition, it begins at 11:45 AM and I am honored to be the MC for this fun family event.
If you would like more information about Rosie’s Kids, you can e-mail Rosie at: email@example.com or like her page on FaceBook.
Written By: Craig Michaels
Musical Affair Entertainment