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Thursday, December 10 promises to be a very special day for the LGBT community as Hotspots HSG-Party2015_copy1Media Group hosts its eighth annual Holiday Celebration. This celebration doubles as a benefit; 100% of the proceeds raised that evening will go to The Pride Center and Latinos Salud, two organizations that work so hard for our community.

This year is even more significant as Hotspots also celebrates its 30th anniversary! At the Holiday Celebration, attendees will be given commemorative copies of Hotspots’ 30th anniversary issue. The issue will feature, in part, retrospectives featuring the stories of some of the people who made the Florida LGBT community proud over the past 30 years (and some who had us ready to fight!), as well as a special look back on the evolution of Hotspots as a magazine and as a brand.

For those who attended in previous years, you know that there is always a surprise or two.  Because of the huge success and record attendance last year, we are moving the event to W Fort Lauderdale’s spectacular ballroom.  We can’t think of a better setting to not only celebrate the holidays but to celebrate our 30th anniversary at the same time!

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Since the beginning, the purpose of the Holiday Celebration has been for the community to come together in the spirit of the season to enjoy its successes.  At the same time, community leaders and business owners look forward to this event as an opportunity to give back in every way we can. 2015 was a banner year for our vibrant LGBT community, boasting a host of accomplishments, including marriage equality, thanks to the hard work of community heroes and organizations both locally and nationally.

The event has grown every year and has seen some very special guests, including mayors, HSG-Party2015_copy2senators and other elected officials from across the state, to amazing talent like actress Valerie Harper; the Kinsey Sicks, a comedy troupe from New York City; America’s Got Talent finalists “Wreckless”; and American Idol finalist Kimberley Locke. We can’t wait to see who’s on the VIP list this year (we did sneak a peek), and you know we like to surprise you, so we are working hard to make this year’s event one to remember!

So many businesses in our community have given their time and resources to help make this amazing event happen. We could not do this without the help of our event sponsors such as Ketel One, who will be offering a signature cocktail that, if purchased, will include a chance to win a 2 Ceylon Sapphires for you and your partner courtesy of Argenti Jewelers (and the winner will be chosen THAT NIGHT!). Besides the gem and the finest libations, there will also be a silent auction with fantastic prizes worth thousands of dollars. Special thanks also go out to our friends at the W Fort Lauderdale for pulling out all of the stops to host the event again this year on stunning Fort Lauderdale Beach.  In addition to the venue, W Fort Lauderdale is also donating the amazing hors d’oeuvres which will be served thought the evening.  If you think that the W Fort Lauderdale is stunning, wait until you see what Adam’s Interiors and Designs By Sean have in store for the décor this year! 100% of the proceeds from the auction and ticket sales will be donated to Latinoa Salud in Miami and Broward and The Pride Center in Wilton Manors.

The eighth annual Hotspots Holiday Celebration is a not-to-be-missed event, so please join us for an unforgettable night on Thursday, December 10 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. There is plenty of street parking surrounding the W Fort Lauderdale, but if you want valet parking, make sure you get the sticker at registration for half-price (only $10). Tickets are only $20 and can be purchased in advance by going to PrideCenterFlorida.org, or at the door for $30.  We can’t wait to celebrate the spirit of the season in support of Latinos Salud and The Pride Center.

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Mike Halterman
Mike Halterman has been the editor of Hotspots Central since its launch in July 2016. He joined the Hotspots Media Group family as editor of Hotspots' South Florida magazine in June 2013. A former "40 Under 40" honoree in The Advocate magazine, Mike lives in the Tampa Bay area.