ORLANDO | Babes in Bonnets, The Parliament House’s annual Easter fixture, set a fundraising record bringing in $32,171 for the Orlando Youth Alliance March 26.
The previous record was set last year when Babes in Bonnets brought in $28,000 for OYA.
The benefit, which was started 20 years ago by drag legend Carmella Marcella Garcia, was hosted by Ms. Darcel Stevens and featured Blue Star and Michael Wanzie as the evening’s auctioneers.
The bonnets this year varied in size and reward leaving those who donated with everything from gift cards, bar tabs and bottles of wine to private dinner parties, beauty treatments and brunch with the one and only Jorge Estevez. Someone even took home a giant duck suit!
Attendees were even afforded a once-in-a-lifetime performance by the legend herself, Carmella Marcella Garcia.
“THANK YOU FOR A RECORD BREAKING BABES IN BONNETS!,” Parliament House Orlando wrote on their Facebook page. “Thank you to everyone who donated their time, bonnets, prizes, and most importantly, your money to the youth of Orlando. Thank you to our auctioneers Blue Star and Michael Wanzie and your host Darcel Stevens. Lastly, thank you George Timothy Reed (Carmella Marcella Garcia) for your vision of Babes In Bonnets some 20 years ago…and trusting us to carry on your legacy once you moved away. The youth of Orlando are forever grateful for what you’ve created.”
The evening’s bonnets were provided by Southern Nights (Orlando and Tampa), Hamburger Mary’s (Orlando and Daytona), Costume Couture, Embellish FX, The LGBT+ Center, House of Health, Parliament House, D Squared Productions, Jcruzstyle, Orlando Dental Group, The Hammered Lamb, Bliss Healthcare, Trend Studios, Stonewall Bar, Savoy, Jackie Siegel, The Ted Show and WFTV’s Jorge Estevez.
Photos by Tabitha Widby