Holly’s Front Row Experience: Gavin DeGraw Concert
Meet Holly Gibbons: a fashionable, loving wife and mother to three gorgeous children. Always smiling and living life to the fullest. You can spot Holly a mile away with her long red hair and sparkling smile.
Holly is always a happy, positive, upbeat person. She takes life head on and sees it as an adventure. She seems to have it all- married to the love of her life Matt, three beautiful, healthy children (Zoey, Juliet, and Matt Jr.), who are the center of her world, an amazingly supportive circle of friends and family, and a beautiful home in suburban Philadelphia. She finds joy in making their house a home and raising her children to be happy and healthy.
On January 29, 2016, Holly was trying to text her mother when she realized she just could not do it. Then she noticed that something was wrong with her speech. At the time, she had a three month old and a thirteen month old at home and she figured she was just “tired”. She called her mom and told her what was going on and her mom felt that it was something more than just being “tired”. She went to the doctor and they did a CAT Scan where it was revealed that she had a tumor in her brain. It needed to be removed right away and had the surgery two weeks later. Two weeks after that, the doctors shared the results with Holly-the tumor was cancerous and diagnosed her with Grade 3 Anaplastic Astrocytoma. Holly received chemotherapy and radiation treatments from March through May of 2016.
Holly did not allow this illness to bring her down. She did what she always does, turns a bad situation into something positive. She along with her family, have been working hard to raise money for Brain Cancer Awareness. They have participated in Brain Cancer Awareness fundraiser walks and benefits and have raised over $50,000 so far in 2016!
Holly’s friend and huge Front Row Fan, Alicia Anders, completed the application process for Holly and shared with our team how amazing Holly Gibbons is. Alicia told us that Holly is selfless, radiant, resilient, and so deserving of an amazing experience that only Front Row Foundation could provide.
Holly is a raving fan of Gavin DeGraw. Gavin DeGraw’s music is a staple in the Gibbons home, played while they eat dinner as a family every night. Gavin’s music brings the Gibbons family hope and happiness in a time of great challenge.
Holly was beyond thrilled to find out she was a Front Row Recipient and going to see Gavin DeGraw live. To make the experience even better – Holly was going to be able to take her husband and four of her closest friends with her! Event Directors, Kellie and Rebecca, got to work creating the most memorable experience Front Row Style!
It was a beautiful day mid-October in Barrington, New Jersey. In fact, it was close to 85 degrees! A record high for this time of year. The limousine pulled up to the fanciest house on the street. All decked out in full blown Halloween decor; complete with killer clowns, witches, gigantic spiders, and skeletons! Halloween happens to be Holly’s favorite holiday.
Holly greeted Event Directors Kellie and Rebecca with a huge smile and warm hugs. She welcomed us into her beautifully decorated home and introduced us to her whole family. Everyone was there to celebrate Holly on her special day.
But first – there must be gifts! Holly’s daughters, Zoey and Juliet helped Holly open up her presents. All of her favorite things were there, including a handmade scarf complete with a gray brain cancer awareness ribbon made by a raving Front Row fan.
After some chit-chat, pictures, and lots of hugs and kisses good-bye, it was time to get this show on the road! The whole gang was off and ready for the Best Day Ever. \o/
First stop was the famous Hotel Monaco in downtown Philadelphia. Holly and her husband Matt checked into their swanky room while the Front Row team waited for Holly’s friends to arrive.
As soon as Alicia, Amanda, Randy, and Meghan arrived, it was time to take some more pictures and the head off to have drinks and dinner at the famous Moshulu.
The Moshulu is a four-masted steel barque built by William Hamilton and Company on the River Clyde in Scotland in 1904. It is the largest remaining original windjammer and she is currently a floating restaurant docked in Penn’s Landing, Philadelphia. This stunning ship was the first stop on this Front Row journey.
We started with appetizers in the front of the ship at the bar. Nibbling on cheese platters, truffle fries, and cheersing to friends, family and health – it was the perfect way to kick of the night.
The group ventured up to the highest deck and looked across the river to wave at New Jersey. We looked up to the sky just in time to see thousands of balloons sailing through the sky. Talk about a Front Row moment!
Dinner was a show stopper. A stunning table surrounded by people that love and adore Holly was the icing on the cake. Holly’s husband Matt started dinner off with a remarkable toast honoring Holly. Delectable dishes came out from the kitchen and a feast was had. The meal was complete with one of every dessert brought to the table family style. This was a meal to remember forever.
With our bellies full, it was time to head to The Fillmore to see Gavin DeGraw. The quaint auditorium was filled with an urban vibe and tons of excitement.
We walked up to our VIP seats located on the second floor directly next to the stage. We were seated at quaint cocktail tables complete with our own personal waiter.
The show opened up with Andy Grammer and boy did he rock the house! He danced and sang his heart out setting the tone for what was about to come. Holly was already dancing, clapping, and singing her heart out!
When Andy was done, it was a quick stage change and Gavin’s set was assembled. He had an amazing hand painted piano placed off to the right of the stage, directly in front of Holly.
Gavin played for almost 2 hours. Holly stood almost the entire time. Singing every word to every song. Holding hands with Matt, sneaking loving looks and kisses, and dancing with her friends. Holly was having the time of her life. There was lots of high-fiving her friends and of course, plenty of Front Row poses throughout the entire show. The concert was a blast!
And just like that the concert was over. It was time to head back to the hotel to share hugs and say our good-byes. A fun filled day of love, laughter, and GREAT friends. A Front Row experience no one will ever forget. \o/
Your bubbly disposition and warm smile light up a room and your inner strength and beauty is unparalleled. What a blessed circle of family and friends you have and I was absolutely honored to have met them and to have spent the day with you all. I am inspired by your dedication to your family and how you fight your diagnosis with being part of the change by your engagement with your walking to find a cure. I will never forget the joy you exuded dancing your heart away at the Gavin DeGraw Concert. Welcome to the Front Row Family- we are always here for you!
I feel connected to your beautiful soul. Your smile is contagious and I see why you are loved by so many. You inspire me and I am so grateful to know you. Even though you are going through some tough times, you continue to shine and uplift others. You are someone I admire. Continue to Live Life in the Front Row and don’t forget – you are part of the Front Row Family, it’s a Forever Thing.