The LGBT Visitor Center will present the first annual “Pink Flamingo Awards” to honor 10 people and organizations that have made Miami Beach one of the top 20 places to visit among LGBT tourists, according to The Advocate magazine. Karen Brown, executive director of the LGBT Visitor Center…
The LGBT Visitor Center will present the first annual “Pink Flamingo Awards” to honor 10 people and organizations that have made Miami Beach one of the top 20 places to visit among LGBT tourists, according to The Advocate magazine. Karen Brown, executive director of the LGBT Visitor Center, made the announcement calling the “Pink Flamingo Awards” a similar concept to the People’s Choice Awards because the winners will be voted on by tourists who have visited the Center as well as locals who frequent the Center for community events and activities. The awards are sponsored by American Airlines, the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Tourist Board of Curaçao and will be held Tuesday, September 17, from noon to 2 p.m. in the Palm Ballroom of the Miami Beach Convention Center.
In addition to the awards, the luncheon will honor past and present city leaders who supported the LGBT Visitor Center concept and paved the way for the MDGLCC Foundation to lease the first floor of Old City Hall to house both the LGBT Visitor Center and the Miami-Dade Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce. Among those being recognized are Miami Beach Mayor Matti Bower, the Miami Beach City Commission and former City Commissioners Saul Gross and Victor Diaz who were instrumental in the opening of the LGBT Visitor Center almost three years ago.
“Many people in the community don’t realize that the LGBT Visitor Center is a stand-alone organization under the non-profit MDGLCC Foundation,” said Brown. “We are partially funded by grants for the work that we do to serve our tourists and our community, but we need the community’s support to raise funds to bridge the gap between what we need and what the grants don’t cover. So many locals enjoy the programming at the Center and so many local non-profits benefit from us being here that I honestly think we should change the name of the place to the ‘LGBT Visitor and Community Center’.”
The Pink Flamingo Awards will be a truly interactive experience, according to Brown. Not only will supporters of the LGBT Visitor Center select the winners of the awards, but also the event will feature a unique, interactive silent auction to help raise funds for the Center’s operations. Included in the silent auction will be a trip for two to Las Vegas including accommodations at the Cosmopolitan Resort, original artwork by David Bromstad, a Regions Bank bicycle, a gift certificate from The Art of Shaving, and more.
Finalists for the Pink Flamingo Awards were chosen by a secret blue-ribbon panel of experts, according to Brown. Voters from around the world will determine the winners based on the ballots cast at www.gogaymiami.com and everyone is encouraged to vote for his or her favorites. Winners will be announced at the luncheon.
The 10 categories of Awards are:
1. HOSPITALITY PARTNER OF THE YEAR
2. FAVORITE NIGHTLIFE PROMOTER
3. FAVORITE RESTAURANT
4. FAVORITE DJ PERSONALITY
5. FAVORITE TOURIST ATTRACTION
6. BEST NIGHTLIFE DESTINATION
7. BEST ENTERTAINER
8. MIAMI BEACH VISITOR FAVORITE
9. FAVORITE FUNDRAISING EVENT
10. BEST RETAIL STORE
Tickets to the Pink Flamingo Awards luncheon are $60 each which includes lunch, a gift bag and a raffle ticket for the grand prize drawing of two tickets on American Airlines and a four-night stay at the Sandton Kurá Hulanda Hotel in Curaçao, courtesy of the Curaçao Tourist Board. To purchase tickets, visit www.gogaymiami.com or call 305-397-8914.