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Theatre, Music, etc.


October 19, 2007


Tricky treats benefit safe sex

Toledo--Nine drag queens and a stand-up comedian took the stage for the Erie Street Ball on Saturday, October 13.

The event was a benefit for Planned Parenthood of Northwest Ohio, and presents the next step in the evolution of the fundraiser formerly known as Sex, Drag and Rock ’n’ Roll.

Desirée, who is the show director at Caesar’s Showbar and a former Miss Caesar’s, was the entertainment co-chair of the event. She performed as Dolly Parton in the early part of the show, letting the crowd know “I will always love you-u-u-u-u!”

Richard Meeker, who as Alexis Winters also performed and is a planning committee member, was thrilled with the changes the event underwent since last year’s installment.

“We had 219 people at last ticket count,” Meeker said, noting that, in addition to the increase in attendance, sponsorships were up about 40 per cent.

This year’s event was held at the Erie Street Market, which facilitated the name change, and the move from May to October gave them a built-in theme.

“We wanted to create a costume-themed event so we could encourage people to come and enjoy the party in a theme-type atmosphere, and since it was close to Halloween we thought it would make a nice transition,” said Meeker, who is a resource coordinator at Planned Parenthood.

In addition to nine female impersonators, the show was emceed by comedian Shelly McCarty, who had the crowd in hysterics.

The sponsors also provided some nice perks for attendees. Grand Lubell Photography, for instance, approached organizers asking if they could set up a digital photo station. They then projected the photos on a large screen near the buffet, allowing nearly instant gratification for Planned Parenthood’s benefactors.

Swan Creek Candle Company donated 300 scented candles, each individually wrapped with a box of matches, so that each partygoers could take one home with them.

“We’ve never been able to do something like that,” Meeker said. “They asked if they could give us a gift for each attendee and donated all of those, which was absolutely incredible.”

“I thought this year’s event was phenomenal, and a big increase for us in attendees and sponsorship,” Meeker concluded. “Last year was kind of a slow year. I think we were very lucky this year to come out where we did.”



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