A portion of the proceeds from the White Party go to a different charity each year, and tonight’s party marks a decade-long partnership between 5FRIENDS4life and the Marine Corps.’ “Toys for Tots” program. Attendees receive a discount on tickets by bringing an unwrapped toy, and last year the event brought in more than 2,000 gifts.
Both color-themed parties were conceived by Huntley and several close friends who were looking to have an impact while having a good time.
“The Black Party gives me the platform to give back to my community, which was the sole purpose of these events,” Huntley says. “It gives me the platform to take what I do for a living and thread it into something that allows me to give back to my community. It feels good to be able to do something and to be giving back on behalf of my community as a black gay man.”
As the Black Party has grown from about 750 attendees in its first year to 3,000 in 2011, its appeal continues to broaden.
“It means a lot,” Huntley says. “I know people look forward to it because it’s a great event and it’s a great cause. The Black Party is gay and straight, black and white, and I’ve always wanted it to be something that was unique and fun for everybody.”