Hilton Orlando

Saturday, October 17

The Headdress Ball is not only The Hope and Help Center of Central Florida’s largest annual HeaddressBall_HopeandHelpfundraiser, it is one of the most important events on the Central Florida LGBT social calendar. A veritable list of who’s who in the Central Florida LGBT scene, as well as their allies, attend this event every year. This year will be the twenty-sixth Headdress Ball, and organizers hope that this year will be bigger and more colorful than ever.

Hardrive Productions and JM Best Entertainment will produce this show once again, and the award-winning producers are making sure that this year’s theme, “Colors of the World,” will be well-represented with fabulous live entertainment, colorful dress and larger-than-life headdresses. The 26th annual HeaddressBall_MaryMurphyHeaddress Ball will be held at the Hilton Orlando (6001 Destination Pkwy.) on Saturday, October 17 from 5 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. A VIP reception will be held before the main show. This year’s special guest is Mary Murphy, who was the longtime judge on the FOX reality series So You Think You Can Dance.

This year’s event includes a dinner, a silent auction, and of course the presentation of headdresses by Central Florida entertainers and other important members of the community. Over $500,000 was raised during the fundraising portions of the Headdress Ball in each of the past two years, and Hope and Help is shooting very high this year, hoping to break the all-time record for money raised in one evening. Nearly 5,000 people in the Orlando area benefited from the money raised at the Headdress Ball last year, via the programs Hope and Help offers year-round. Since 1989, over $6 million has been raised in support of Hope and Help.

HeaddressBall_copy1“There is NO other black-tie charity gala in the state like the Headdress Ball,” Russell Walker, events manager at Hope and Help, said. “Every year the buildup of excitement about what will happen next, coupled with raising money for a cause that the community cares so much about, is what keeps people coming back every year.”

The evening begins with registration from 5 to 7 p.m., which will be located at the bottom of the escalator in the Hilton lobby. Pre-register your friends by e-mailing their names, cell phone numbers and e-mail addresses to events@hopeandhelp.org. The silent auction will begin at 5:15 and will wrap up at 9:30 p.m.; you can bid on items in person or via the 501 Auctions app which is available for free for smartphones. The VIP reception begins at 6 p.m. and the main event will begin at 7 p.m., featuring dinner and live entertainment.

Tickets range from $300 (silver level) or $450 (gold level) per person. Groups and corporations can reserve tables of their own as sponsors of the event. Sponsorship levels range from $2,500 to $15,000. Go to headdressball.org/tickets.php to buy your ticket or sponsorship package. If you have any questions, contact Russell Walker at (407) 645-2577, ext. 111 or events@hopeandhelp.org. If you’d like to volunteer to work the Headdress Ball, contact Duane Hoyle at volunteers@hopeandhelp.org.

ABOUT THE HOPE AND HELP CENTER

The mission of the Hope and Help Center of Central Florida is “to inspire, equip, and mobilize people to take action against HIV/AIDS,” and has stayed the same ever since the organization was founded in 1988. Hope and Help Center offers medical case management, testing, counseling, peer support, education and community outreach programs, including a food pantry. For more information on the Hope and Help Center, visit hopeandhelp.org. For more information on this year’s Headdress Ball, visit headdressball.org.