Action Girl Exposition Empowers Women

Date: 08-21-2004

The sound of wheels rolling onto ramps is almost deafening at the Long Beach Convention Center, and with an almost acrobatic grace they flip and spin on their skateboards. A young woman clad in pigtails, a black customized "Powder Girl" halter top with pink ties, a pink skirt, and black platform knee-high boots steps onto the stage.

Rayko is the lead vocalist of Dig Jelly, a high-energy modern rock band with a huge loyal following. Their sound is edgy and unique, with a blend of hip-hop added in. Dig Jelly consists of Rayko, who provides vocals, guitar and keyboards, Joey, who plays the drums, Robby on lead guitar, Rain on the bass and their DJ, Atley, on turntables.

They are just one of three bands that performed at the Action Girl Expo on Aug. 21 at the Long Beach Convention Center. This was not their first local event; Dig Jelly rocked the house at Club Cohiba in Downtown Long Beach on Aug. 19, closing the night with their brand new single, "S.L.A.M.," which is being played on the radio station KROQ.

Once onstage, Dig Jelly's charisma and fusion of talent is so intoxicating that people couldn't help but come and listen. Free CDs, t-shirts and guitar picks were given away to any fans that were able to catch them. The frenzy reminded me of bridesmaids rushing to catch a recently thrown wedding bouquet.

The Expo was hosted by Powder Girl and Action Girl, groups that promote and connect female athletes and performers. The expo also features a tradeshow that showcases brand names such as Black Flys, DC Shoes and Powder Girl, just to name a few.

Drinks were provided at the Tiki Lounge so that attendees could relax while watching the Concrete Jungle Fashion Show.

Ramps were set up for skateboarders to try out their newest stunts. Dig Jelly's Rayko is also an avid skateboarder and was riding on the ramps with her their fans before she went on stage with the band to perform.

A few extreme bikers were executing stunts near the stage where Dig Jelly was performing and some were testing out a new skateboard that supposedly makes one feel as if the rider were surfing.

The highlight of the entire event however, was Dig Jelly's energetic performance and songs that completely embodied the spirit of why the Action Girl Expo was originally created: to unite and strengthen women who are in the athletic and musical industry and allow their voices to be heard.

By Kara Ogushi, Staff Writer, Online Forty-Niner

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