Metro Weekly

Cherry Date

D.C. circuit party moves to Capital Pride weekend

The wait for Cherry just got longer.

The Cherry Fund announced Tuesday, Nov. 14, that its signature fundraising party will move from spring — the time it’s been held for the past 11 years — to June 8-10, the same weekend as Washington’s Capital Pride parade and festival.”By moving Cherry to the same weekend as Capital Pride, we look forward to an increase in the popularity and draw of the event,” said Cherry Fund Chairman Paul Marengo in the announcement. ”We are hopeful that the move will have a positive affect on Pride’s attendance and overall success as well.”

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The Cherry Fund, a not-for-profit organization that raises funds for national and local organizations, has faced a wave of criticism in recent years for Cherry’s fund-raising fallout, among other issues. In 2002, the Cherry Fund donated more than $170,000 to gay organizations, compared to last year’s donations of about $31,000, given to 12 different beneficiaries including Whitman-Walker Clinic and the Mautner Project.

Still, Marengo says last year’s funds were $10,000 more than the previous year. He also emphasizes that Cherry’s move is in no way a ”merger” with Capital Pride, but he is hoping it will help boost attendance at both events.

”We figured the energy of [Capital Pride and Cherry] could work off of each other,” he says. ”We’re going to wait and see how we do.”