Barney “Perfectly” Frank was all over the news a few weeks ago, as the House’s best jouster against shouting protesters at townhalls on health care reform. And yet Hearsay bets you didn’t hear where Frank actually washed up Sunday, August 16.
Hearsay was minding its business, paying no attention to anyone but the thousands of scantily clad, sweaty muscled gay men it was dancing with right on the beach in New York’s Fire Island Pines. It was a scorching humid, mostly sunny 90-degree day. At first Hearsay thought it was suffering a heatstroke when it saw what looked like Frank walking through the crowd in nothing but baggy shorts. Is that really? Could it be? Hearsay had to investigate. Yes, indeed, that was the genuine item confirmed a ticket-taking volunteer at the Ascension Beach Party, a benefit for the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force and Fund in the Sun Foundation. Turns out, the volunteer was just as shocked as Hearsay to see Frank there – and even more shocked to see him shirtless. Oh well, it proves that congressmen have nipples, too.
Hearsay had to take a breather and cool off in the wading pools that Ascension organizers had constructed. The party took place on a cordoned-off area of the beach, which you entered through a big white art installation in the shape of the letter A. Walking through was kind of like playing Hole in the Wall -- but much less challenging. Then came a sod-covered catwalk, flanked by two wading pools, the better to salve partygoers’ hot dancing feet. A large white-wooden dance floor was flanked by risers and ended with a DJ console, from which Tony “Beach Beatmaster” Moran plied his trade (or traded his ply, Hearsay really can't be bothered to recall). Kelly “Destiny’s Dance” Rowland performed in front of Moran’s stand toward party’s end, around 5 p.m. She sang two songs, the first of which was a forgettable ballad, while the other was “When Love Takes Over," billed by event organizers as “The Song of The Summer” -- and well, you know you just can’t deny.
The Sunday beach party is the main to-do at this now four-year-old event, but it has become a full Ascension Weekend. There was a private pool party Saturday afternoon, where DJ Kimberly S got happy. And then there were parties every night at the Pines Pavilion nightclub. And of course, Hearsay enjoyed lots of tea: Every evening brings Low Tea, Middle Tea and High Tea happy-hour events, right there at the harbor. Hearsay teed up and enjoyed meeting new friends and reconnecting with old. Among the many Hearsay chatted up: The Task Force’s Alex “Up And Away” Breitman and Michael “Winter Party Wonder” Bath, Richard “Eco, Wind & Fire” Cohen, Kevin “The City’s Next Big DJ” Graves and Timothy “Putting the G in Gynecologist” Ryntz. But of course, you can’t go anywhere without running into D.C. denizens. Sure enough, Hearsay enjoyed dancing with Clint “Spice It Up” Pepper, Mark “Little Red Firetruck” Lamont and Randy “I Love New York” Brown, all in town for the party. It was certainly one not to be missed....