Visitors to Palm Springs love to party, so it's more than appropriate that each Spring the city is host to the Club Skirts Dinah Shore Weekend (aka The Dinah)—the largest lesbian event in the world.
This year marks The Dinah's 27th annual celebration and it kicks off at the close of Women’s History Month on March 29 and continues through April 2.
"I was not the first lesbian to throw a Palm Springs Dinah party, but I was the first to see how big this event could get and started to build the international vision," says Mariah Hanson, the founder and producer of The Dinah. "It's the perfect spot to host the largest lesbian event in the world. I just knew if I built it, they would come. And they did—in droves! We're very proud to host the event in such a LGBTQ friendly city—a city that simply embraces diversity and recognizes that our differences are our strengths."
Hanson has always had a personal commitment to helping the LGBTQ community obtain equal rights and was on the board of Equality California during a pivotal time when she was one of the board members who pushed the organization to fight for the right to marry now, rather than wait until the overall community felt the timing might be more beneficial "We as a board decided that the time for civil rights is always now and that we must never wait for our equality, for our freedoms, and for our right to a life well-lived, free of fear and discrimination," she says.
This commitment to the community resonates with today's Dinah goers who Hanson says now live in a more tolerant world that embraces their lifestyle choices and celebrates who they are. And she notes that's reflected in the way the weekend unfolds: "The collective self-esteem of our community is very high and The Dinah celebrates that notion and helps to further increase our worth through an open and very loud celebration of our uniqueness."
And this year's event will indeed be a very loud celebration of that uniqueness starting with music from Keala Kennelly, the world surf champion turned cutting-edge DJ. "Lizzo is our choice for the next big thing as well as a group called FHB," adds Hanson. "They're very mysterious and that is creating some cache amongst the influencers. No one even knows what they look like."
Other performers include the rapper Tish Hyman, Latin hip hop artist Lady Cultura, stand-up comedian Julie Goldman, British comic Gina Yashere, and the 90s icons CeCe Peniston and Black Box.
"It's a well-rounded weekend packed with great talent and thousands of women," says Hanson. "Palm Springs—are you ready?!"
For more information, go to: www.thedinah.com
Photograph of Mariah Hanson: Courtesy Club Skirts Dinah Shore Weekend