By Iride Aparicio

Photos Courtesy: The Brand Phoenix Inc.

Event Host, Sunny Hostin with Children's TV Icon
Sonia Manzano and 2019 Honoree Rita Moreno

THE BRONX, NEW YORK--  Dedicated to the Children of the BRONX -past, present, and future, - on Tuesday, May 7,  The BRONX CHILDREN's MUSEUM ( hosted its third annual benefit gala at the Manhattan's Gotham Hall in New York City. The BRONX luminaries in attendance included: Honorees RITA MORENO, SHAWN "PECAS" COSTNER, Gala Co-Chair KERRY WASHINGTON, The View's SUNNY HOSTIN, Bronx Borough President RUBEN DIAZ, Actress SONIA MANZANO (Maria of The children show SESAME STREET, and Grammy nominated drummer BOBBY SANABRIA.
BC2I6160The benefit was a resounding success, grossing nearly $500,000 for the organization's outreach program that reaches  over l8,000 children annually, and its new  state-of -the art facility- the borough's first-ever children's museum, that will open in 2020.

Hosted by BRONX's native, museum's board member and host of The View, SUNNY HOSTIN,  the ceremony celebrated the contributions of BRONX innovators from across generation and sectors who support the institution and are committed to inspiring children and their families.

EGOT recipient ( winner of an Emmy, a Grammy and Oscar and a Tony)  RITA MORENO, Pictured Left with
Landscape Architect JONATHAN MARVEL sitting on her right and SHAWN "Pecas" COSTNER standing,  

Image by Johnny Nunez

delighted the guests with a personal story about her arrival in the BRONX as a young child from Puerto Rico, encouraging those in the audience to dream big.  She added that there is important for children to have a museum available to them for every reason in the world;  For creative reasons or just (to arouse) their curiosity.

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz/Photo:J. Nunez

Also honored that night with one of the three 2019 Bronx Children's Museum Imagination Awards was BRONX-born Roc Nation Executive and Hip-hop Community leader SHAWN "Pecas" COSTNER . In his speech he said: "I am so proud of the work being done by BRONX Children Museum. We believe in this vision because we know what happens when you give a Bronx girl or a Bronx boy and opportunity. It allows them to dream, to expand their imagination.

"SHAWN COSTNER is a reminder that talent is abundant, but opportunities are not- said Bronx Borough President RUBEN DIAZ, "Yet, with our BRONX DNA, they (the BRONX children) can go out and conquer the world."

Carolyn Schwartz, Development Director, Bronx Children's Museum, Honoree, Shawn "Pecas" Costner and Carla Precht, Founding Executive|Image by Johnny Nunez

SHAWN COSTNER is an influencer of global trends and has enhanced the career trajectories of megawatt artists like JAY Z, RIHANNA, DU KHALED, and athlete like Yankee Pitcher CC SABATHIA.

Also recognized for his innovation and environmentally Conscious design was Architect JONATHAN MARVEL, a force behind the BRONX's Mill Pond Park, and Brooklyn' s Navy Yard whose award-winning firm steered the revival of multiple public spaces across the nation and is piloting ambitious solar energy project in his native Puerto Rico.

Also in attendance were New York City Council Member VANESSA L. GIBSON, Philanthropist AMBER SABATHIA , The Voice of New York, ANGIE MARTINEZ, former Def Jam executive STEVE BARTELS and retired New York Giant VICTOR CRUZ.

The evening included a dance routine performed by four second grade children from the Museum's Dream Big After School Program, and a performance by BRONX-native and Grammy nominated Latin-Jazz musician BOBBY SANABRIA.

Founded in 2005, The BRONX's Children's Museum is the borough's only cultural and educational children's museum designed to inspire children and families to learn about themselves an the diversity and richness of their surrounds, as well as the world beyond. The Museum will launch its new flagship facility in a New York City Parks owned building near the Yankee Stadium.

This above Information to CULTURAL WORLD BILINGUAL was a courtesy of  ERICA LOPEZ from The Brand Phoenix, Inc.| New York City.