Raising Spirits on Riverside Drive
Sometimes, it’s as important to raise spirits as money, and one annual opportunity for the Imperial Court of New York to shine is GMHC’s annual AIDS Walk.
Rain or shine on the third Sunday of May, this event attracts tens of thousands of people each year. They make the 10K walk from one end of Central Park to the other, up 110th Street to Riverside Drive and then back down the Upper West Side and into the park again. Along the way, they’re likely to meet people providing music, Cheer NY doing all sorts of gymnastics, and other groups brought in to applaud, excite and thank the walkers. Just as things are getting tiring, just as walkers are looking for the fourth bathroom and snack stop, they get one last boost of energy from the Imperial Court of New York!
This event happens early in the reign and is one of the first great chances for the new monarchs to play with theme costumes! One year, the Court may be dressed as waitresses, another as nurses. One year it may be themed along a color, or others along a decade. When your humble correspondent was reigning, it was I Dream of Jeannie! (Every other year, I walk with Team Iris House.)
Reign or shine, sunburn or shivers, ICNY is always at Riverside Drive around 90th Street cheering, applauding and posing for thousands of photographs. It’s an important part of what we do, because as much as non-profit organizations need dollars, they also need dreams and a chance to smile. We are excellent at the smiling part, and have the pictures to prove it! Of course, immediately following the Court on the walk route is another refreshment station with bottles of water, lots of chips, sometimes some string cheese and the most glorious sights ever: portapotties. (If you’ve ever done a 10K where they give you bottled water every 2, you’ll appreciate that.)
It’s this philosophy that makes Night of a Thousand Gowns so truly thrilling: while we’re raising money for critical causes, we’re also making a spectacle of ourselves, taking our work very seriously while not taking ourselves seriously at all. Come join us as we sparkle and shine, glimmer and gleam and help inspire and raise spirits!
RAISE YOUR SPIRITS AT NIGHT OF A THOUSAND GOWNS!