As I continue making introductions in New York I have found some really brilliant charitable organizations that we will be supporting. Flash back to a couple of Wednesdays ago when I walked into a huge board room at 7:00 in the GM building. It was for new members of a charity called The Trevor Project.
Do you remember GLEE and the spots that Google Chrome ran with the celebrities talking to youth who are gay or lesbian and telling them the most honest words one can tell them: ” It gets better.” Here, let me refresh your memory with this link.
I remember being on the couch and tears rolling down my face after watching that ad. I also remember wanting to find a way to make a difference. The Trevor Project’s mission statement is:
The Trevor Project is determined to end suicide among LGBTQ youth by providing life-saving and life-affirming resources including our nationwide, 24/7 crisis intervention lifeline, digital community and advocacy/educational programs that create a safe, supportive and positive environment for everyone.
I immediately knew that this was a charity that I and my company would embrace. That said, I was not supposed to have been in town for their Summer fund raiser, however, as it turned out I was and I got to kill 2 birds with one stone. I am no longer a Fire Island Virgin and I worked on a really fabulous event. Join me as I take you through this fun day and into the night!!!
the morning started about 7:30am grabbed some coffee. I headed to Penn Station to meet my friend Ben Watson to take the jaunt (I use that word loosely as it takes about 2 hours) out to Fire Island Pines. It was somewhat comforting to me to have a pal to go out there with. It seems just making sure you are on the right train is a task and a half. It is rather convenient that they sell package deals at Penn Station. For $31.00 you can get round trip train service and ferry service to the island.
We boarded the first train and off we went. We got to the ferry about 90 minutes later. . the smell of the salt air brought me right back to Charleston SC where I am originally from and still have an office. We boarded and off to Fire Island we went.
Ben Watson and Myself.
When we got off the boat, I totally felt like I was fresh off the boat. This was my first rodeo. Imagine an island that was so accepting and this particular part of the island all gay men of every size, demographic and age. We walked in to grab some breakfast and it was like a veritable nightclub going on in the line to place your order for food. Gaga was on the sound system and people were bobbing their heads over coffee and their lox bagel and cream cheese. Where in the HELL was I?!!!
Well we headed to the event space and wow what a view!
As always there was a great amount of work to complete before the guests arrive. I went right to work along with a team of amazing volunteers to create the Bollywood inspired Splash pool party. the event featured 3 bars, 2 special performances and approx 350 guests.
The first performance was done a choreographed lady gaga number set to Bollywood inspired beats. I caught a bit of their rehearsal.
The event was a resounding success raising over $30,000 for the charity. I hopped the ferry back to the city to prepare for what was next. . .an evening out. I have to tell you. . .I have never lost my southern roots. . I did think that I have lost my accent though. However, as it was so clearly pointed out at a dinner party, my accent is still very Charleston after a couple of cocktails! I embraced it and went out southern style to meet some new friends. That is exactly what happened.
one of my favorite watering holes in the city is this little place in Hells Kitchen where celebrities, Broadway stars and everyone else co-habitate into one fun small room. Great wines by the glass, creative cocktails. It’s called Hour Glass. Check it out sometime.
Last night I ran into Andrew Rannells the star of the run away Broadway hit musical Book of Mormon.
He was hanging out with a couple of friends. Then in walked this 6 foot 7 tall guy. . . .turns out he is in My Big Gay Italian Wedding; Brent Heuser. Well we got to chatting, and ended up meeting him across town at this cool little piano bar called Uncle Charlies. I of course jumped up on the piano played a few songs and called it a very rainy Saturday night.
There is always something fun and creative to do in the city. I welcome all of my new friends that I am meeting along the way and so proud to be able to support such wonderful charities.
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Have a wonderful week everyone and thanks so much for reading!!!