Free Urself Too Dance Party
Free Urself Too Dance Party
Tue, Apr 23
Lee’s Liquor Lounge
Apr 23, 9:00 PM – 1:00 AM
Lee’s Liquor Lounge, 101 Glenwood Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55403, USA
DJs Spooky Calavera, Michael Holtz and Danny Sigelman Proceeds fund Academy of Prince $7

Purple Playground envisions a world where Prince’s legacy of positivity and giving continues in perpetuity. We formed our 501(c)3 nonprofit fan-based group in June of 2017 to honor Prince’s legacy and to provide as he did – with funds from our events used to create our Academy of Prince music program for teens. We raise funds through free parties and low cost events, t-shirt sales, and soliciting donations and grants.


Academy of Prince:

Purple Playground’s inaugural Academy of Prince summer music program took place August 6-10th, 2018, at High School for Recording Arts, a St. Paul, MN charter school founded by David “TC” Ellis, who grew up with Prince and rapped with him the New Power Generation.

The Academy of Prince program was created and taught by Willie Adams and Heidi Vader. Our inaugural class included teens from the Mpls/St. Paul metro area (and one from Iowa). The students learned Prince history through listening and discussing songs and videos by Prince and artists who influenced or were influenced by him, activities designed to help them “find the funk,” and guest speakers. They also wrote and recorded their own Prince inspired songs, along with the help of engineer TRYBISHOP.  Guest musicians included Bobby Z Rivkin and Matt Finkof The Revolution, Jellybean Johnson of The Time and The Family, Lakame McGee and Pete Johnson. The songs were mixed and mastered by TRYBISHOP and are available as Purple Playground’s “Finding the Funk” by Academy of Prince, class of 2018.

Facts about Academy of Prince:

Diverse group of 13-15 year old singers and musicians from Mpls/St.Paul area 

Recruited through schools, community arts programs, Mpls Open Streets events and social media

Program fully funded through donations

Special guests included songwriters, scholars and authors, including musicians who played in The Revolution and The Time.

Currently raising funds and planning for expanded two-week program for August 2019.

Purple Playground Board Members: 

Heidi Vader: Founder

“Prince taught me to dream big and dare to make my dreams a reality.” 

A life-long Prince fan, Heidi celebrates his life, music and philanthropic legacy with others. Her prior nonprofit experience as a board member and marketing and volunteer coordinator for the Diverse Emerging Music Experience (DEMO), along with her purple passion, prepared her for this venture. Heidi also co-owns Child Development Review, which produces developmental screening and assessment tools for young children and has worked in the hospitality industry for decades.

Willie Adams:

“I’m excited to bring my passion for education and purple funk to Purple Playground’s mission and keep the beautiful and precious legacy of Prince alive for generations.”

Willie is an educator, DJ, and vocalist from the San Francisco Bay Area. He studied the music of Prince and the “Minneapolis Sound” intensively since the 1980’s. From 1991-1996 he was a prominent college radio DJ and music director at KUCI FM in Irvine CA. While living in England, Willie was the voice for all the UK radio adverts for the Emancipation album in 1996-97. 

He is the Co-founder of the fan group Purple Funk SF and served as a history and humanities teacher, counselor, and dean of students. He has also taught and lectured at the University of California Monterey and created and ran enrichment programs for underserved youth.

Karen Ryan: 

“I really admire Prince’s genius. Seeing him truly being in the flow and honoring his gift and his talents to create timeless music and performances was amazing. True genius is a gift and it was a gift to have experienced his genius live and up close at Paisley Park/in concert AND through his albums. And thinking of his genius inspires me to find my gifts and nurture them, too.”

Karen grew up in Chanhassen, MN – the opening of Paisley Park in 1987 capped years of following the releases of her talented neighbor. Throughout college and an advertising career in Chicago, she never missed a concert when Prince came to town. She enjoyed her first Paisley Park shows in 2015 upon making her way back home.

Karen has also helped start other nonprofit organizations. She is a founding Board member of GiGi’s Playhouse Twin Cities, an achievement center for individuals with Down syndrome and their families. She lives in Chanhassen with her family, just 2 miles from Paisley Park.



“”Love the (2018) end of year review. Excellent concept to share and involve the community in the growth of the channel. Your work is so inspiring and informative. I enjoy learning your perspective of his music. I love to study song lyrics, research when he wrote and recorded the songs in parallel with what was going on in his life at the time that would influence the music. All ways we can get to know him better… 💜💜💜💜. May we live 2 C the dawn!!!”
Lali Prince Music Dec 2018

“Prince’s Friend, I am a new subscriber. I found your channel when I came across the video you did about Dez Dickerson which was so fascinating. Me and a friend recently traveled to the Twin Cities where we took a tour of Paisley Park. What an amazing and emotional experience that was. Anyways, I just wanted to reach out to you and let you know how much I enjoy your content. You are a fascinating man.”  Nathanial  January  2019

What people are saying

“First of all I would like to say thank you for all that you do. Your channel is growing and I’m so happy for your successes. I’m so glad to have stumbled upon your channel and have always been looking forward ever since. My favorite was your review of The Gold Experience as that is one of my favorite albums. I’m so excited for 2019.”
– Ana H (Journey of PF 2018)

“I think this is my favorite video you have created concerning Prince. It is apparent that you dug deep and gave this topic a great deal of thought. You highlighted concepts and traits of Prince that are quite thought-provoking and through his music, his lyrics, his moral stances…..he teaches. Unorthodox in many ways, but so impactful…. thank you PF for this enlightening video! I throughly enjoyed it ”
– Teresa H (Prince was a Modern Sage)

Leave a Comment

Contact Us

Send us an email and we'll get back to you shortly.