PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – It was Bingo like you’ve never seen before Saturday night at the Loews Hotel in Center City.
“This is our 17th annual Black-Tie GayBINGO,” says Robb Reichard — executive director of the AIDS Fund.
He says hundreds gathered for dinner, dancing and entertainment to raise money for HIV and AIDS awareness:
“We still have a long way to go to ending the epidemic and until we get to zero we need to keep fighting and keep playing gay Bingo until this crisis is over.”
Playing Bingo was just part of the fun at this glamorous event.
“We have our Bingo Verifying Divas, who are fabulous volunteers in drag who entertain the audience,” says Reichard.
Summer Clearance is one of those divas:
“Our job at the Bingo game is to walk amongst the crowd and when someone yells ‘Bingo’ we have to make sure that they’re not lying.”
Like the others, Summer was dressed for the occasion:
“We’re all wearing 20’s inspired clothing this evening, so the theme is sort of a flapper era, so I’m wearing a flapper dress and we all have feathers in our head dresses.”
Awards were also given out, including one to Favorite Straight Person of the Year Judith Porter for her work in Philadelphia’s needle exchange program.
“There’s so many wonderful people that are connected to the AIDS Fund and I was just so deeply honored to be chosen as our favorite straight person,” she tells KYW Newsradio. “I really appreciate the work that they do.”
The night began with a silent auction, then the Bingo Verifying Divas got the crowd energized with a dance performance, before having everyone in attendance take the GayBINGO pledge.