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Get inked at Tattoo Mania

Get your ink on during the inaugural Tattoo Mania expo in West Palm Beach from May 23-25.

The event, at the Palm Beach County Convention Center, will feature the latest trends, contests, a Harley-Davidson motorcycle display and TV personalities including Spike TV's Big Gus from "Tattoo Nightmares" and Joey Germinario, also known as Joey Tattoo, from "Tattoo Rescue."

The organizers, Lake Worth couple Junior and Jennifer Rodriguez, hope the expo celebrates the diversity of tattoo artists and followers.

"This is for kids, for young people and old people,'' said Junior Rodriguez, a mortgage financial manager who sports five tattoos including one with his wife's name. "We also want to clear up the stereotype of what tattoo people are like. We are professionals. You can make over $100,000 and be an entrepreneur and a loving father and have tattoos."

Having traveled to tattoo conventions nationwide, the couple wanted one closer to home.

"We thought it would be great to bring the best of the best to Palm Beach County," said Jennifer Rodriguez, who runs a rhinestone accessory and apparel business called TJ Spirit Zone in Lake Worth.

For the kids, the event will have a 2,000-square-foot area for Lego contests, coloring and temporary tattooing.

Tickets are $20 per day, or $40 for three days, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Wellington-based nonprofit Blooming With Autism Foundation. A close friend of the Rodriguez family has a 7-year-old autistic son.

"People who get tattoos are just walking canvases,'' said Jennifer Rodriguez, who has four of her own. "This is for everybody and anybody who has an appreciation for art."

If you go

What: Tattoo Mania West Palm Beach

When: 5 p.m.-midnight May 23, noon-midnight May 24 and noon-6 p.m. May 25

Where: Palm Beach County Convention Center, 650 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach

Cost: $20 per day, $40 for three-day pass, free for children younger than 12 with adult.

Info: tattoomaniawpb.com

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