Winter Party Festival draws record attendance
Roberta Sklar, Communications Director
LGBT festival draws huge crowds and awareness of Task Force work
MIAMI, March 19 — The 2008 Winter Party Festival was an extraordinary success with record attendance at its signature event, the 15th Annual Beach Party. Held from Feb. 23 to March 3, this year’s festival drew more than 10,000 total attendees across more than two dozen events. Produced by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, it featured an expanded lineup of cultural events and programming for specific segments of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community as well as world-class dance events at some of the most popular nightclubs in South Beach and Miami. The festival culminated in the famous Winter Party Beach Party, which attracted approximately 6,000 guests. The increase in attendance was fueled by significantly more attendees from Western Europe and the United Kingdom.
In May, when final reconciliations are competed, the Task Force will donate two-thirds of the festival's proceeds to the Dade Community Foundation to support LGBT organizations in Miami-Dade, with the remaining one-third going to support the Task Force’s actions nationwide.
“We’re proud to be continuing to grow the Winter Party Festival into a world-class event that draws guests from around the globe and remains 100 percent of, by and for the LGBT community,” said Executive Director Matt Foreman. “The broad program of events demonstrates our commitment to inclusion and diversity as well as raising awareness of the valuable work of the Task Force in communities across America.”
This year's lineup included new events for women, a dinner dance for the transgender community, an art exhibit, a gathering for youth, another for people of faith, and a family picnic. Record-breaking highlights include more than 450 guests at the Showtime Departure Lounge event, 2,700 attendees at the Doubletree Surfcomber pool party, 2,000 spectators at Winter Party Runway, a fashion show sponsored by aussieBum, and more than 60 journalists from countries as far afield as Turkey, France, Ireland, Germany, Brazil and the U.K.
To support the organization’s pro-LGBT actions, Task Force field organizers identified nearly 3,000 people interested in helping defeat the anti-marriage constitutional amendment that will be on November's Florida ballot, and staff from the Movement Building department pushed a healthy safer-sex message.
Winter Party Festival Sponsors and Partners
411 Magazine, 42 Below, Alegria, Aqua Girl, Ascension, Aussie Bum, Bacardi Superior, Bar Be Que Beach, Barefoot Wine, BigMuscle.com, Black & Blue, Blue Ball, Bombay Sapphire, Buzz Magazine, Cazadores, Cherry, Chicago Free Press, Club Nautico, Corzo, DavidBartonGym, Dewar’s, DoubleTree Surfcomber Hotel, Edge Publications, Express News, fab, Gay Chicago Magazine, Gay Internet Radio Live, Gay Whistler Ski Week – WinterPRIDE, Gloss Magazine, GMAPS360, GO Magazine, Gourmet Station, GreatPartyPics.com, Gun Oil, Halo, Hilton Wolman Presents, HotSPOTS! Magazine, HX, HX Philadelphia, Independence 2008, InNewsweekly, Instinct, jakeinteractive.com, JustCircuit, Kiehl’s Since 1851, Latin Fever 10 / NYE 2009 Puerto Vallarta, Mack Planet, Macy’s, MaleCiti.com, Manhunt.net, Mark Nelson Events, Mark’s South Florida List, Martini & Rossi, Masterbeat.com, Metromix.com, Miami Beach 25/7, Miami Beach VCA, Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs, Miller, MRNY.com, MTV Latin America, The Naked Concierge, Next Magazine, noiZe Magazine, One Mighty Weekend, Orbitz, Outlook Weekly Magazine, Partylist.com, Passport Magazine, Purple 8, Rockstar Energy Drinks, Saint at Large, Sapient, SAVE Dade, Sephora, Showtime Networks, sobegayinfo.com, Sobe Social Club, southbeachgroup.com, Terra Networks, Tom Bercu Presents, Undergear.com, White Party-Miami, White Party-Palm Springs, Wire Magazine
The mission of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is to build the grassroots power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community. We do this by training activists, equipping state and local organizations with the skills needed to organize broad-based campaigns to defeat anti-LGBT referenda and advance pro-LGBT legislation, and building the organizational capacity of our movement. Our Policy Institute, the movement’s premier think tank, provides research and policy analysis to support the struggle for complete equality and to counter right-wing lies. As part of a broader social justice movement, we work to create a nation that respects the diversity of human expression and identity and creates opportunity for all. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., we also have offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis and Cambridge.
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