Carnevale delivers costumes with flair [photos]

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VIEW PHOTOS | Carnevale from Jerusalem House @ Four Seasons Hotel

imageCostumed party-goers — from Chilean miners to the Mad Hatter, gays in the military and leather-clad studs — filled a Midtown ballroom Friday for the Carnevale fundraiser.

The 11th annual event raises big bucks for Jerusalem House, which provides permanent housing for people with and affected by HIV. A finally tally isn’t yet available, but event organizers party big: They hoped to raise $50,000 to $70,000 last year before that event turned out so spectacular that it blew out the power of one of Atlanta’s historical markers and forced an early evacuation of the ballroom.

Fast-forward to Friday, a new event host, the Four Season Hotel in Midtown, and a packed ballroom.

image“We are so appreciative of how the community supported our event this year, our sponsors, patrons, attendees, volunteers and other donors,” says Alex Wan, development director for Jerusalem House and the only openly gay member of the Atlanta City Council. “The money we raise from this event is critical to our agency. It funds all of the supportive services we provide our residents above and beyond just basic housing.”

And with the agency adding 28 units in the next 14 months, Wan says the funds from Carnevale are even more critical.

“It’s so important for us to secure the resources needed to deliver the level of service to our current and future residents,” he says.

Wan wasn’t the only elected official on hand at Friday’s event. City Council President Ceasar Mitchell helped judge the costume contest. Mitchell, unlike Wan’s outfit of a blue shorts-suit mimicking a spokesmodel for sponsor Grey Goose Vodka, didn’t dress up for the occasion.

imageJoining Mitchell for the costume contest was Dwight Eubanks (third photo), the unofficial gay housewife from Bravo’s “The Real Housewives of Atlanta.” Dressed somewhere between a warlock and vampire, Eubanks appeared to have overdone the nose job that’s been a topic on the show this season. WSB TV anchor Linda Stouffer also served as a judge.

The evening included a raffle that included a trip for two to New York City, a week-long trip to Costa Rica, a private catered party at your home, 20 bottles of wine and a seven-night stay in a cabin in the North Georgia mountains.

Photos by Sher Pruitt

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