Out for Obama: Gay Rights Group Plans Mega Inaugural Shindig
The "Out for Equality" ball (though its gay-rights organizers don't want to call it a ball) is shaping up to be one of the single hottest tickets on inauguration night. And you don't have to be L, G, B or T to want in on this action.
The party, being organized by a large coalition of gay-rights groups led by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, promises to feature Cyndi Lauper, Rufus Wainwright, Melissa Etheridge, Thelma Houston and other artists. It will be held at the legendary landmark Mayflower hotel, which, need we even say, is one of the most primo locations in the capital city.
Tickets go on sale next week for the early-bird, recession special price of $350, which, besides the entertainment, includes unlimited Obamatinis, equalitinis and as much Chicago and Hawaiian themed food as you'd like from the buffet. After Dec. 16, prices rise to $375. But it won't get you in the same ballroom as President-elect Barack Obama, since the more casual gala - attire is "festive or formal" - will be an unofficial one.
For those in the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) community whose 401k plans have shrunk to peanuts and can't afford such steep ticket prices - never fear. The coalition of sponsors is hosting a much more affordable separate party the same night called "Dance for Equality" at the gay nightclub Town Dancebotique. (Talent and ticket prices will be announced in mid December, organizers say.)
The double blowout extravaganza will commemorate what one leading organizer of the event calls "an important time in history: the inauguration of the most LGBT friendly president in history." (The organizer asked to remain anonymous so that his phone doesn't ring any more than it already is with long lost friends wanting tickets, musicians offering to drive cross country to perform and vendors looking to make a buck.)
Besides Human Rights Campaign, other co-sponsors of the LGBT bashes include, the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund & Leadership Institute, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, National Black Justice Coalition, PFLAG (Parents, Friends and Family of Gays and Lesbians) and GLAAD (Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation).
Organizers expect about 2,000 people to attend the Mayflower ball. And maybe more with the all-Cyndi Lauper-all-the-time Web site CindiLauperNews touting the event.
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