Fans of Bella Da Ball Successfully Complete Campaign to Secure Bella’s Star on Walk of Stars.

IT’S A GO! A group of fans and friends of local celebrity host/entertainer Bella da Ball, aka Brian Wanzek, has successfully completed a fundraising campaign to secure a star for the entertainer on Palm Springs’ famed Walk of Stars.

Spearheaded by a group of friends and entertainers who have worked with Bella over the years at a variety of venues and nonprofit functions, the group launched the campaign in March, and with generous support from the Palm Springs community and beyond, secured the necessary funding by the end of May.

The unveiling of the star will be held during a public ceremony on Saturday, November 9 at 4 pm in downtown Palm Springs, in front of Azul, located at 369 N. Palm Canyon Drive ( In addition to a series of private receptions for donors to the campaign, the unveiling of the star will also be celebrated with an evening musical performance at 7:30 pm at Azul, free and open to the public.

“We are absolutely delighted at the outpouring of support during this campaign effort,” says Doug Graham, a local entertainer who was the catalyst for the campaign. “Bella’s alter ego is Brian Wanzek and they BOTH personify the spirit of Palm Springs; representing the community and the city itself. She embodies the spirit of inclusion and belonging, and she has brought people from all walks of life together. I can’t think of anyone more deserving than Bella da Ball to have a star on Palm Springs’ Walk of Stars.”

An historical landmark, Palm Springs Walk of Stars ( was founded in 1992 and honors individuals with a Golden Palm Star embedded on the sidewalks of Palm Springs. Honorees must have, by their presence in the area, contributed to the charm, worldwide prominence and name recognition of Greater Palm Springs. Stars are located on the sidewalks of Palm Canyon Drive, Tahquitz Canyon Way and Museum Drive.

Brian Wanzek, perhaps better known as drag personality, Bella da Ball, is Palm Springs’ area social ambassador and “host/hostess with the mostest.” He has been involved in and instrumental in benefits and functions of numerous Palm Springs organizations, including AIDS Assistance Program, Palm Springs International Film Festival, Greater Palm Springs Pride, Save A Pet, Friends of the Palm Springs Animal Shelter, Modernism Week and so many more. Bella has been producing and hosting the weekly Cabaret Revue at Azul for more than three years with popular drag personalities and some of Coachella Valley’s finest vocalists; and hosts Bingo and Trivia Night each Monday at the Ace Hotel.

A past recipient of the Desert Business Association Outstanding Community Service Leader award, Bella/Brian also received the Herb Lazenby Community Service Award for the AAP at the annual Evening Under the Stars in May.

More details of the Star ceremony and related receptions and performance will be announced closer to the unveiling date of Saturday, November 9, 2013. For more information, people can go to the Bella da Ball Fan Page on Facebook .


What’s even the point?

Arizona Auto Insurance QuotesSafe Driving Course?

Who could forget the days of Driver’s Ed—those first weeks behind the wheel of a car with your teacher and few other classmates. If you did something right, you’d get a compliment and if you screwed up, well, your friends would razz you.  Would you go back to that kind of course?

What if you knew you would get lower auto insurance rates if you took a driving education course?   Courses in defensive driving and safe driving are available to adults. Especially if you’re an older adult, it would be smart to take one as it could lower your car insurance rates.

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A cut rate on auto insurance is a key reason to take a driving safety course.  Car insurance companies figure that reminding you of safe driving techniques will pay off on the road. You’ll have fewer accidents and of course, fewer claims.  They love drivers who present less of an insurance risk.

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Stories about people getting angry on the road—road rage—are horrifying.  Defensive driving is key to staying safe—assume that the other drivers will make mistakes and do what you can to leave yourself a safety margin. And do not ever get angry on the road—not only is it distracting, but you never know what another driver could do to retaliate. Don’t take another driver’s bad move personally. Defensive driving courses teach you all about how to handle these situations.

Tune Up Driving Skills

Of course we know how to drive, right? Because we think we know how, we tend to cut corners. We think we’ll still be safe. So we don’t signal a turn. Or don’t always look when moving across lanes.  A refresher course could help remind us of the basics that we don’t do, but should, to avoid accidents..

  Good for Your Driving Record

Some states say that if you get a ticket and take a driver safety course you can reduce the number of points on your license or prevent them from going on your record. This is such a no-brainer—a moving violation could raise your car insurance rates. Why not take a course instead?

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Driver over 50 do have a tougher time focusing. They are more easily distracted. Their reactions aren’t as quick. AARP has a very good course—sometimes taught by other seniors who are safe drivers.