There’s something so electric in the air throughout the Palm Springs Valley this time of year. As we count down toward Memorial Day during the beautiful months of April and May, it seems every weekend brings yet another world-class event attended by throngs from literally every part of the world. Rancho Mirage’s Kraft Nabisco Challenge and The Dinah in Palm Springs during the first part of the month are followed by the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival’s consecutive twin weekends. And then, near April’s end comes Stagecoach California’s Country Musical Festival. Happening concurrently this year, from April 25 to 28, is Jeffrey Sanker’s The White Party. Now, this mainly-all-boy spectacular is usually a show-stopper. But because Sanker and company are celebrating the event’s 25th anniversary this year, organizers have vowed to outdo themselves.
As was the case with previous annual incarnations, there will be daytime Friday, Saturday, and Sunday Splash Pool Parties at host hotel Renaissance Palm Springs. There will also be the Friday “Addicted to White” Underwear Party. And Saturday’s granddaddy of them all, the “White Party 25 Icon” dance at the Palm Springs Convention Center, which will boast performances by the likes of 2013 American Music Award “Best New Artist” winner Ariana Grande (confirmed) and either Cher or Kylie Minogue (or so the rumors have it). The Closing Party on Sunday will be preceded by the Sunday Circus Icon T Dance at White Party Park (replete with not one but two ferris wheels, the biggest fireworks in WP history, and world-famous DJ’s Grind, Wayne G., and Ralphi Rosario).
But for this, billed as the largest gay dance music festival in the world, the powers that be also have a few changes and surprises in store for us. Sanker has promised to unleash “some of the most ambitious and mind-blowing audiovisual engineering ever conceived.” Sanker has also created the White Party Palm Springs Icon Awards, which will recognize a select group whose unique and varied achievements have stood out and best embody the spirit of White Party. Just some of the big names being honored include Cher, Lady Gaga, Kathy Griffin, Sir Elton John, Bruce Vilanch, and Bravo’s Andy Cohen.
“What began as a gathering of 300 of my closest friends celebrating the rites of spring 25 years ago has evolved into 30,000 men from across the world coming together and re-defining the meaning of desert heat,” said Sanker in a statement. I don’t know about you, but I am sooooo there.