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Gay Men Of Color Getaway To Palm Springs

Monday Apr 9, 2012
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Palm Springs CA - California’s largest gay and bisexual men of color vacation getaway is gearing up for its 6th Annual event in Palm Springs, California, May 4-6, 2012, during the Cinco De Mayo weekend.

Blatino Oasis producer Joe Hawkins said that his vision for the annual getaway has taken root. "Before this event, none of the annual gatherings targeting gay men of color worked in Palm Springs. Blatino Oasis has been the first to successfully bring gay men of color together on an annual basis, in Palm Springs and has grown to become the largest annual getaway event targeting gay men of color in California." Hawkins said.

The city is starting to take notice. Last year the Palm Springs City Council presented Blatino Oasis with an official certificate of recognition welcoming the group and validating the positive economic impact that the event is having in the city.

Hawkins, who is African American, stated,"In 2006, I was told that, although the area is home to larger numbers of gay Latino men, Blatino Oasis would not work in Palm Springs because the "B" (black gay men) in Blatino, are simply not here. This fact coupled with the ongoing recession also challenged my primary market’s expendable income. I have always said that if Blatino Oasis’s attendance were to shrink during the first five years, I would re-consider the viability of going forward."

"But to the contrary, Blatino Oasis continues to grow. I knew that gay and bisexual men of color in California and from across the nation, desperately wanted an event like Blatino Oasis and from the increase in attendance year after year, I would say that many gay men of color agree."

When asked how the local Palm Springs community and in particular the gay community have received the event, Hawkins said; "I have been fortunate to work with some amazing local gay businesses like the Canyon Club Hotel, PULP, and PS Bottomline Magazine to name a few. Gloss Magazine in San Francisco, Global Male in San Diego and others across the state have also been consistently supportive and understanding of my vision and the challenges involved with what I have been trying to do over the past six years."

"Blatino Oasis has been the first to successfully bring gay men of color together on an annual basis, in Palm Springs and has grown to become the largest annual getaway event targeting gay men of color in California."

"It has not been easy attracting gay men of African descent and the gay Latino market during a recession to Palm Springs, a place that has been off the radar for most of them. Blatino Oasis would not have worked without the understanding and support of local and gay businesses and I am very grateful for that." Hawkins said.

This year’s event will feature Grammy-winning, songwriter, singer, producer, and Real House Wives of Atlanta star, Kandi Burrus who will be hosting the "Boy Candy" party sponsored by Dawgpoundusa, on Saturday, May 5, at Azul’s on Palm Canyon Drive, from 10pm-2am. Gay Authors Marvin K. White, Michael Booker, Alex Langford and Robert C. Quintana, will do readings, Visual Artist J.S. Ingram will showcase his work.

On Friday, May 4, Adult film star and 2011-12, Blatino Erotica Award winner, "Phat Daddy" will be throwing a kick off birthday party at Rainbow Bar & Grill on Arenas from 10pm-2am. Signature events include the popular "Blatino Oasis Erotica Awards & Pool Party" on Saturday, May 5, sponsored by Black Rayne Productions at the Canyon Club Hotel from 2pm-7pm.

Highlights of the Pool party include; Latino celebrity erotic go-go and pool party host Cisco, BiLatinMen will showcase their models, a sexy fashion show by African American designer LaRon Hicks of NORAL Designs, Erotic Stripper "Redickulous" and the 6th Annual Blatino Erotica Awards.

And on Sunday, the Kings Supporting Kings - White Party Brunch, will be held at Azul’s and features the annual community service awards. There will also be group trips to Soak City Water Park and Mountain tram rides.

For more info on hotels and to purchase passes, visit the website www.blatinooasis.com

This article is part of our "Summer 2012" series. Want to read more? Here's the full list»

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