While the arrival of the TIGI Salon Tour bus on Aug. 6 will be a thrilling event in itself (the bus is the former means of transportation for Jimmy Buffet, Rod Stewart, Third Eye Blind and Velvet Revolver), Lopez has transformed the concept of the event from promotional tool to fundraiser.
Last November, Wild Orchids stylist Nicole Bishop learned that her younger brother had been diagnosed with leukemia. While the entire Wild Orchids crew stuck by her and helped host small fundraisers, Lopez decided to amplify the TIGI event into an entire production, featuring live music, a car show, dance performances, a Dress Your Dog Like a Rockstar contest and of course, haircuts, colors and styles.
“I’m not going to lie; when I first heard that the TIGI bus was coming, I thought this would be a fantastic marketing opportunity to help promote Wild Orchids. Like all businesses, we’re feeling the pinch of the recession,” Lopez said. “But when I heard about Nikki’s little brother, and I saw the tears, I knew I could turn this traveling salon event into so much more.”
Bishop’s brother, Andrew, was diagnosed with acute lymphocytic leukemia just a week after he turned 15, but Bishop said her brother’s spirits remain high despite his fragile condition.
“He’s a trooper,” Bishop said. “His immune system is so weak from the chemo, but he still manages to smile. I think he’s a little stir crazy more than anything. He’s very active and social, so being stuck at home isn’t all that fun for him. Just a trip to the grocery store is exciting for him these days. But he’s hanging in there.”
When Bishop heard the news of her brother’s diagnosis, she had trouble coping, especially since Andrew still lives at home in Reno, but the outpouring of support from the Wild Orchids family as well as the community has brought her comfort.
“At first it was crazy hard for me to grasp what was happening,” Bishop said. “It really puts things into perspective when you see your little brother battling a life-threatening disease. It’s hard to see him go through this, but I’ve been humbled by the community support and all that Lori is doing to put on this event. I’m shocked by the magnitude of what this event has become. At first it was just the bus coming, and all the girls were going to come in to work so that we could raise as much as we could, but now all this other stuff is going on. I’m just so humbled that they are donating their time because all the proceeds will go toward paying my brother’s medical bills. I’m just really grateful.”
While Wild Orchids stylists will be cutting hair in the salon, they’ll also take turns cutting hair on the salon bus, which is home to three style chairs, a shampoo bowl, a TIGI products display as well as a lounge area and a Guitar Hero station.
“This ain’t your mama’s tour bus,” said TIGI Specialist Julie Rainwater. “The bus has been gutted and completely transformed into this posh, edgy salon where you can get a new ’do and rock out. The bus has been traveling around the country since March and Wild Orchids is actually one of our last stops, so it’s really exciting to be a part of this huge fundraiser.”
The event, officially titled Livin’ for the Dream & Rockin’ for a Cure, will feature an editorial fantasy competition between Lopez and stylists from Carol Carey Couture Salon, Bella Fortuna Salon, Salon Vitor, and Rubia Salon & Spa. Stylists will battle to create the most out-of-this-world concept, just like the crazy hairdos you see in America’s Next Top Model photo shoots.
“It’s going to be a blast,” Lopez said. “Each stylist is required to donate $200 to participate, and all of the proceeds go to benefit Andrew. We’re still looking for more competitors. The more the merrier. And it’s for a good cause. Some salons have these little rivalries, but this is all for charity and all these different local salons are coming together to help out a super-cool kid.”
Haircuts will cost $50, which includes a cut, styling and a tutorial with your stylist, who will teach you what products to use to achieve different looks. Once you have your new look, photographers will be on hand to snap the new you. The event also features a vendor’s area, a raffle, a performance by Sigma 13 and a barbecue as well as performances from Extreme Tumbling and Cheer and Spin Sity. A fee of $20 is required to participate in the dog show or car show. All proceeds go to the Andrew Bishop Trust Fund. If you can’t make it to the event, donations may be made to the trust fund through Bank of America, account 1128569354.
Those who’d like to participate in any of the contests, donate items for the raffle or sponsor the fundraiser should call Lopez at 925-756-0666.
The event will be held Friday, Aug. 6 from noon to 8 p.m. at Wild Orchids the Salon and its surround parking lot, 1328 Sunset Drive in Antioch. For more details, visit www.wildorchidsthesalon.com.