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Winter Party Festival Welcome Reception
The DoubleTree Surfcomber, Miami Beach, Fl
by Mark Thompson & Robert Doyle
February 25, 2009
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Let’s face it, there’s nothing like a First Class lounge—a lounge filled with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, as well as a palpable sense of anticipation as you and your fellow travelers get ready to embark upon a journey to a tropical paradise. And that’s just how it was on Wednesday evening at the Doubletree Surfcomber, where illuminated palms swayed in the breeze as the waves crashed against the shore just beyond the dunes. This was Departure Lounge, the Showtime-sponsored Winter Party reception to welcome guests and supporters of Winter Party Festival (WPF). And what better way to welcome a plethora of south Florida and Gotham movers and shakers (David Bowers! Mark Nelson! Pussila! Flavio! Jason Tamanini! Chad Richter! Edison Farrow! Pennyback Boys! Rea Carey! Dale Stine!) than with ample Grey Goose vodka, and libations from Barefoot Wine, and a bevy of stunning WPF volunteers proffering delectable hors d’oeuvres. DJ Sayho manned the decks with a mash-up of moon-over-Miami melodies while Daniela Sea of The L Word gamely hawked raffle tickets and mingled amongst a harem of lovelies (and, in particular, two stunners affianced in Boston…) We used to be “banned in Boston” and now we’re getting married! Look how far we’ve come!

For as Rea Carey, Executive Director of the Task Force reminded us, the Winter Party Festival is a community effort, dedicated to empowering our LGBT community and working to insure that full equality is forthcoming—with all WPF proceeds going back into the community. And on that note, the ever-peppy Pussila broke into a jig, perfectly suited to the whipped cream confection adorning her pretty head. All around us was evidence of strength of character and passion, as evinced by the tables of various community groups such as South Beach AIDS Project (SoBAP) with their killer camo tees proclaiming SAFER SEX SQUAD, and SAVE DADE, and Miami Beach Gay Pride, and GLBTQ Helpline, and Gay American Heroes—all organizations that are out there daily, fighting for our health and happiness, our rights and civil liberties. And as the palm fronds waved above us, we toasted to a glorious Winter Party Festival filled with fun, safe sex, and unsurpassable beauty. Next stop, Blast-Off!


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