Challenge Accepted

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4677123

If you’re active on social media, there’s no doubt that you’ve heard the phrase: “You have 24 hours to accept the challenge, or donate $100.” This week, millions of people across the world, including plenty of celebrities, have been accepting and daring their friends to complete the ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) Ice Bucket Challenge. The Ice Bucket Challenge has participants dump buckets of freezing water on top of their head and donate $10 to the ALS Association to help raise awareness for the disease. The participant then challenges friends to do the same within 24 hours. If someone who is challenged chooses to decline, it’s expected that they donate $100. It all started when ALS-diagnosed 29-year-old Pete Frates of Beverly, Massachusetts, completed the challenge and posted it on sites like Facebook and Twitter. The viral video encouraged others to start, thus taking over nearly every news feed and Twitter page. Since then, celebs including Jamie Foxx, Anne Hathaway, Drake, Lindsay Lohan, and Channing Tatum have hopped on board, choosing to help raise awareness for the disease. So far, the challenge has helped raise over $15 million for ALS research. Even if you haven’t been nominated, head over to www.alsa.org to see who else has completed the Ice Bucket Challenge and donate. While you’re there, check out how to become an ALS advocate or join the Walk to Defeat ALS. If you choose to complete the challenge and post it on social media, make sure to use the hashtags: #icebucketchallenge, #alsicebucketchallenge, or #strikeoutals. You have 24 hours. On your mark, get set, GO!

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starbucks-1024

Good deeds sparked as customers of a Starbucks in Florida chose to “pay it forward” for nearly 11 hours. The string of kindness started Wednesday when a woman decided to pay for the customer’s drink behind her while on her morning coffee run through a Starbucks in St. Petersburg, Florida. The lucky customer behind her, instead of just being shocked and humbled by the generosity, decided to “pay it forward” by also choosing to pick up the tab for the person behind them. This went on for nearly 11 hours! Approximately 378 people in total paid it forward at the Florida Starbucks, restoring our faith in humanity. However, it’s not the first time something like this has happened. The same location has a string that once lasted through 141 customers, and a location in Connecticut last year had a string that lasted through 1,468 customers during Christmastime! What an awesome way to brighten someone’s morning!

Chris Pratt has the looks, charm, and comedy chops to make us swoon. But this week, the actor stepped up his game, and made us love him even more. The actor, along with some help from Marvel and the Children’s Miracle Network Hospital, arranged a screening of Guardians of the Galaxy for patients, family and staff at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles on Wednesday. As everyone enjoyed the film, Pratt snuck out and transformed into his character, Star-Lord. He then spent more than three hours in full costume, handing out toys and visiting with patients in the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit, the Children’s Center for Cancer and Blood Diseases, and the Pediatric ICU. Many of these children were too sick to attend the movie screening that afternoon. When the screening ended, Pratt continued to take hundreds of photos, let children try on his gear, and signed autographs. The organization thanked him later by tweeting, “Thanks for making them smile!”

This week also welcomed a few new little ones into the world. Christina Aguilera and fiance, Matthew Rutler welcomed a baby girl named Summer Rain. Summer is the first child for the couple, and joins older brother Max, who Christina had with ex-husband, Jordan Bratman. Fall Out Boy bassist and rocker Pete Wentz also welcomed a new addition this week with girlfriend and model, Meagan Camper. Their baby boy, named Saint Lazslo, joins older brother Bronx, who Wentz had with ex-wife, Ashlee Simpson.