Universal Studios Hollywood Celebrates 24th Annual Christmas in Spring with M.E.N.D.

Hundreds of Universal Studios HollywoodSM volunteer employees, a tropically-clad Santa Claus and a menagerie of mischievous Minions from the theme park’s popular “Despicable Me Minion Mayhem” ride, come together to bring warm holiday cheer to over 1,000 M.E.N.D low income family members as part of its 24th annual “Christmas in Spring” event on Saturday, May 2 from Noon to 2 p.m.

“Christmas in Spring” will be held at M.E.N.D – Meet Each Need with Dignity, located at 10641 San Fernando Rd, Pacoima, CA 91331.

The event is sponsored by Universal Studios Hollywood’s philanthropic Discover A Star Foundation and is designed to offer less fortunate families the opportunity to enjoy a fun outing during a time of year when the needs of these families are often overlooked.

This year’s “Christmas in Spring” program will include a scrumptious menu, custom prepared by Universal Studios Hollywood’s award-winning Executive Chef, Eric Kopelow, and served by employee volunteers. In keeping with Universal Studios Hollywood’s ongoing “Wellness” initiative, the feast will feature 600 pounds of skinless chicken, 600 pounds of vegetables, 600 pounds of salad, 4,000 fresh strawberries and freshly baked bite-size chocolate chip cookies.

Families supported by M.E.N.D. will enjoy an afternoon of interactive festivities comprised of carnival games, face painters, live DJ and entertainment from singer/songwriter and CityWalk Street Performer, Megan Arial.  A keepsake family photo memento with the Minions, Scooby-Doo and Shaggy, Dora and Diego from “Dora the Explorer,” Beetlejuice and Santa Claus will add to the special springtime celebration. Children will also be treated to giveaways, including a large plush Minion toy and a book of their choice.

In the spirit of paying it forward, Discover a Star grant recipient, A Window Between Worlds, will provide an arts and crafts station. The non-profit group is dedicated to using art as a healing tool to empower and transform individuals and communities impacted by violence and trauma, while inspiring women and children to recover a sense of renewal and independence through creative expression.

Universal Studios Hollywood, The Entertainment Capital of L.A.SM, includes a full-day, movie-based theme park and Studio Tour; the CityWalk entertainment, shopping and dining complex, the Universal CityWalk Cinemas and the “5 Towers” state-of-the-art outdoor concert venue.  World-class rides and attractions include “Despicable Me Minion Mayhem” and “Super Silly Fun Land,” the critically-acclaimed mega-attraction, “Transformers™:  The Ride-3D,” the intense, award-winning ride, “King Kong 360 3-D” on the behind-the-scenes Studio Tour, “Revenge of the MummySM—The Ride” and “Jurassic Park® —The Ride.” As part of its milestone 50th anniversary celebration in 2015, new attractions include the electrifying 3D-HD thrill ride, “Fast & Furious—Supercharged” as the grand finale to the famed Studio Tour, “Springfield,” hometown of America’s favorite TV family, adjacent to the award-winning “The Simpsons RideTM” and the “Nighttime Studio Tour,” offering tours of the iconic movie backlot on select evenings.

Credit: Universal Studios, M.E.N.D.

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