Issue:  Vol. 48 / No. 12 / 22 March 2018

San Jose LGBT Pride, Club Papi unite to raise money

Hoping to improve on a rough year, organizers of San Jose’s LGBT Pride festival have announced a partnership with Club Papi to hold several fundraisers leading up to the 2012 Pride event.

The first benefit starts at 9 p.m., Sunday, January 15 at the dance club Splash, 65 Post St., San Jose. There’s a cover charge of $5 before 10 p.m. Details on future benefits haven’t been announced.

Net revenue will be used for funding entertainment at the South Bay city’s 2012 festival, set for Saturday, August 18.

Attendance figures for last year’s party were disappointing, and the organization, formally known as the Gay Pride Celebration Committee of San Jose Inc., continued to run a deficit of several thousand dollars despite a 2011 surplus. In September, the group’s board decided to cut the event from two days to one.

Club Papi

Jamie Awad, owner of Club Papi, the brand that started in San Jose and is known for bringing scantily clad go-go dancers (such as the men seen at left) to bars worldwide, opted not to participate in last year’s San Jose Pride.

Shortly after the event, he said, “We just needed to take a break this year,” but he added that he and his troupe looked forward to returning in 2012.

San Jose Pride board President Nathan Svoboda said in a statement this week, “Papi is part of the South Bay Latin culture and Pride wants to ensure that we offer a diverse fundraising lineup in support of the 2012 festival. We are excited about working with Jamie and a stronger partnership then in years past.”

San Jose Pride also hopes to bring back the parade, organizers said. As in 2010, there was no parade this past August.

The board is “passionate about re-inventing the 2012 festival and the return of the parade,” officials stated. They said they’ve also established working committees, an “aggressive” development plan, and a marketing strategy.

After the 2011 event, Pride board members complained of a lack of community involvement. Former board President Steve Bass noted earlier this year that board members are all volunteers, and said, “I’m not doing this for me. I’m not getting laid out of this thing. My dick didn’t get sucked out of it.” He added, “What does the community really want? If the community doesn’t want to support this, then why are we doing it?”

For the upcoming event, Pride organizers are encouraging people to participate in the process by joining a committee, or at least providing feedback.

“The Parade needs to come back, but we will need the support of our community, local corporations, and private donors to achieve this goal” Svoboda stated.

— Seth Hemmelgarn, December 29, 2011 @ 12:59 pm PST
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