1. SAN FRANCISCO GLAAD Media Awards May 10 GLAAD.org Star sightings are guaranteed at the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation?s glam cocktail reception?dinner?auction?awards show combo at the landmark downtown San Francisco Marriott. Out writer-producer Ilene Chaiken, creator of The L Word?s luscious lesbians, and gay author-activist David Mixner (Stranger Among Friends) take home honors from the 19th annual event, which salutes LGBT-inclusive media representation.
2. CHICAGO Dance for Life
August 23 AIDSChicago.org
Well-toned bodies command center stage at Dance for Life, the Windy City?s artsy annual benefit for AIDS Foundation of Chicago and other local HIV/AIDS service agencies. Among the scheduled dance companies at the shimmering glass Harris Theater in downtown?s Millennium Park: the Joffrey Ballet and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. Tickets in the $150-and-up range include a pre-performance reception and the choicest seats.
3. PHILADELPHIA The International Equality Dinner
May 3 EqualityForum.com Hobnob with some 600 politically minded LGBT folks at an elegant gala in the National Constitution Center, held in conjunction with Equality Forum?s annual weeklong civil rights symposium. What better place than the City of Brotherly Love to honor the antidiscrimination efforts of New Mexico governor Bill Richardson, recipient of the organization?s 13th annual International Role Model Award.
4. BARCELONA XII EuroGames Opening Ceremony
July 24 EuroGames.info Marvel at a mammoth spectacle of light and music as LGBT athletes from 28 sporting disciplines parade through Barcelona?s Palau Sant Jordi, the flying saucer?shaped stadium built for the 1992 Summer Olympics. The elaborate ceremony kicks off the two-day European Gay and Lesbian Sport Championships, the largest event of its kind on the continent.
5. MOUGINS, FRANCE Cinema Against AIDS
May 22 amfAR.org Celebrity heavy hitters like Elton John and Johnny Depp have beelined to this medieval village less than five miles north of Cannes and its glitzy filmfest for amfAR?s black-tie fete at Le Moulin de Mougins, a 15th-century mill turned luxe hotel-restaurant. Now in its 15th year, the high-ticket cocktail party, dinner, and live auction event has raised over $29 million for AIDS research.
6. MIAMI GALA Choruses? 25th Anniversary Celebration
July 16 GALAChoruses.org In an eight-day festival filled with high notes, GALA Choruses? songbird soiree reaches a crescendo with a silver anniversary celebration at downtown Miami?s James L. Knight center, with an after-party amid the lush flora and fauna of Jungle Island animal park. Vocalists selected from the fest?s 120 participating groups unite voices in homage to the not-for-profit choral organization.