Masquerage is Dayton’s hottest “nothing-like-you-have-ever-seen-before” event, and this annual masked party is fast becoming THE event of the season. With a different theme each year, Oct 17th’s Masquerage will feature a circus theme complete with performers, games, magic and even a circus “animal” or two. It promises to be “An Evening of Fantastical Oddities and Astonishing Wonders!”
Guests will mingle with sideshow “freaks,” play midway games, have their fortunes told and be amazed by high wire acts. The non-stop entertainment features aerialists, sword swallowers, dancers, whip artistry, and other scintillating side show stunts provided by Freakshow Deluxe.
And a tradition at the event, the Rubi Girls, a group of gay men in their 30’s and 40’s who perform comedic drag for charity, will grace the stage with a couple of sizzling songs sure to whip the crowd into a frenzy with their hilarious antics.
Food items themed for the Big top will be provided by members of the Dayton Independent restaurants including The Chimneys, Madison’s Bistro, The Dock, Christophers, The Barnsider and Bahn Mai Thai Café. Chef Matt Hayden will dazzle us with freaky Molecular Gastronomy demonstrations. Guests will also have the opportunity to bid on marvelous and unique gift baskets including certificates to area eateries, spas and once-in-a-lifetime experiences during the silent auction.
Since the inaugural year, AIDS Resource Center Ohio’s (ARC Ohio) signature annual fundraiser has become the fastest growing, “must-attend” event in Dayton, bringing people together to have a great evening, generate greater awareness about HIV/AIDS and raise much-needed funds to benefit client services and people living with or affected by HIV and AIDS. The diverse population of attendees and varied venues contribute to the growing popularity and success of the event. Proceeds from Masquerage benefit ARC Ohio.
“Masquerage brings people together for a spectacular evening while generating greater awareness about HIV/AIDS. It also raises much-needed funds to benefit those living or affected with HIV/AIDS” said Bill Hardy, CEO of ARC Ohio. There are 2,800 reported cases of HIV/AIDS in the agency’s service area and another 700 or more undiagnosed cases. This year, the organization will provide assistance to nearly 2,000 individuals affected by HIV, and will reach thousands more with testing and prevention efforts.
The 2008 Masquerage had over 700 attendees and raised more than $140,000. This year, the goal is $150,000 and a sold-out crowd is expected. Each year a different setting is uniquely transformed through décor and lighting into what has been described as a “surreal fantasy land.” Masquerage 2009 Event Chair Don Augenstein is thrilled with this year’s event. “Every year the committee thinks of ways to increase the excitement and make it even more over-the-top than previous years. And given the events of the past, this is one difficult challenge. But our committee was undaunted and this year, I truly believe we have done it again. This is not the circus of your childhood.”
Guests can purchase a general admission ticket to the event for $50 which includes a welcoming cocktail, fabulous food, unlimited dancing and endless entertainment. Tickets may be upgraded to the $140 VIP level – which includes exclusive access to the Red Ribbon Lounge with table service, the Biltmore Champagne Bar, passed hors d’oeuvres, exclusive performances and a one-of-a-kind Swag Bag full of take-home treats as well as valet parking. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.masquerage.org.