Regional

17-y-o set sights on breaking into events promotion market

BY ACEION CUNNINGHAM
Observer West writer

Thursday, August 08, 2019

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MONTEGO BAY, St James — The world of events promotion can be one of uncertainty and disappointments, but on the flip side it can also be one filled with personal fulfilment and financial success.

For 17-year-old Kristen Toolise, it is the thrill of fulfilment and rewards that have her bubbling with excitement and promise.

The recent graduate of Montego Bay High School has firmly set her sights on breaking into the events promotions' market and has already executed her first event, Wavez 'The Ultimate Water Party,' held last month.

That event, she hopes, will become a staple on the entertainment calendar in the future, and one to impress and draw the attention of partygoers.

“I'm drawn to exciting activities and the challenges leading up to events, such as the promotion and interaction with different persons in the field. I also love to see the reaction of persons after they have the time of their life at an event. Given the opportunity, I planned my 'Sweet Sixteen' birthday party and my guests had a blast. Fast-forward to graduation and everyone kept encouraging me to throw another party to celebrate the milestone and provide an opportunity to just have some fun after a hectic school year and exams,” Toolsie explained.

“My biggest inspiration, though, is my mom, Loraine Yapp. She's an events manager and being around her exposed me to so much of the intricacies of event planning. With her providing support, I dived right in and started planning Wavez. I was scared at first, I thought persons would find my little twists for the party childish or even worse, find them boring. I added as many elements as possible to get persons involved and having fun. We had a food truck on location, a mixologist for cocktails and I made an attempt to engage as many patrons as possible for a personal touch. The response was overwhelmingly positive and that has added further fuel to this flame. I'm looking to improve on this event and one day be considered as someone that lifted the party experience.”

Toolsie told the Jamaica Observer West that she is cognisant that persons might have reservations about her competence in planning an event, due mainly to her age, she is hellbent on living her dream.

“I knew that reservations from persons would have to do with my age and not being taken seriously, because of it, but I couldn't let that deter me from doing my dream. I know there will be challenges too, as this is a male-dominated field and persons might look on and say the market is saturated also. I believe, though, that if you put out an awesome product, persons will gravitate to it. I have ideas and over time I will see what makes an impact and what doesn't, but that is the fun in the journey,” she argued.

She challenged other young persons to follow their dreams and not be afraid of taking risks.

“I want my story to inspire other young persons to follow your dreams and to not be afraid to take on a challenge in life,” she urged.


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