PALM BEACH GARDENS —Olen Whitely has one chance Sunday night to show the judges his rap song deserves the top prize.
"My song has to be perfect. I only get one shot. Those judges are looking to see that you can perform well in front of an audience," said Whitely, 29, a native of Jamaica who is a teacher at Tradewinds Middle School in Greenacres.
About 40 singers, dancers, musicians and other artists between the ages of 7 and 29 are scheduled to compete Sunday for more than $10,000 in prize money at the Borland Center of Performing Arts. Top prizes are $1,000 and a $4,000 scholarship for first place; $500 and a $3,000 scholarship for second place and $300 and a $2,000 scholarship for third place.
"The format is like America's Got Talent. The performers are seeking their dreams. We want them to reach way down inside to be the best they can be," said Terry Bomar, founder of Royal Palm Beach-based Young Adventurers, sponsors of Young Adventurers Dream Night.
Four judges will decide the winners. They include Dan Haggerty, who played Grizzly Adams in the television series that ran in the late 1970s, and Alto Reed, who plays saxophone for the Silver Bullet Band led by Bob Seger.
Young Adventurers is a 501 (c) 3 faith-based charity organization that creates adventures to inspire young people.
"We've gone to Wrangell-St. Elias National Park in Alaska, the Grand Canyon, Washington D.C. and way up to Maine. We are trying to help the young people who really need it," said Bomar.
The contest winners must use their scholarship money for education in the entertainment field, said Bomar.
Whitely, who said he first performed on stage when he was in second grade, is confident he'll put on a good show.
"Once I get out there in front of people, I'm comfortable. I always wanted to be on stage," said the West Palm Beach resident.
IF YOU GO:
What: Young Adventurers Dream Night Talent Competition
Where: Borland Center of Performing Arts, 4901 PGA Blvd., Palm Beach Gardens
When: Sunday, 7 p.m.
More information: youngadventurers.org