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Gender ball cancelled due to low interest


By Aubrey McDonnell
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Tuesday, March 29, 2005
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The Gender Bender Ball scheduled for Friday night was cancelled last week due to lack of student interest.

Members of the Associated Students of the University of Arizona Pride Alliance executive board held an emergency meeting Friday to vote on the cancellation of the second annual Gender Bender Ball.

Planned to be a semi-formal dinner with performing and musical entertainment, the event was cancelled because organizers felt there was little community response.

"We didn't have many people sign up for it this year," said Angel Nguyen, ASUA Pride Alliance co-director. "It was out of our hands because there was so little feedback from the community."

Gender Bender planners were hoping to host 50 guests at this year's ball, but as of Friday only 20 to 25 people were signed up for the event, which could be attributed to a lack of advertising, said Nguyen, a retailing and consumer sciences junior.

"We could've done a lot more advertising," Nguyen said. "Unfortunately spring break and awareness week were so close together this year that we didn't have that much time to prepare."

Nguyen said there was concern the performance at the ball would be a drag show like last year, which some considered boring after awhile.

"There was a lot of concern that it might just be all drag," Nguyen said. "This year was going to be different, we were planning to have a variety show."

Students who attended the event last year said they thought the night was fun, but it was not exactly what they expected.

"I was expecting to dance and stuff, but it was just dinner and entertainment," said Alex Grubb, a journalism junior. "It was still a pretty good time though."

The Gender Bender Ball gives students the opportunity to dress the way they feel on the inside, whether it be masculine or feminine.

"You can express your gender however you feel," Grubb said. "Some men dress in female attire, some don't. It's whatever you feel like doing."

This year, Nguyen said ticket prices were lowered from $35 per person and $60 per couple to $20 for a single student and $35 for a couple.

"It's cheaper this year so I don't know why there was a lack of interest," Grubb said.

The ASUA Pride Alliance will not reschedule the event for later this semester, but the group hopes to host a ball in 2006.

"The ballroom is all reserved for the rest of the year," Nguyen said. "But we plan to advertise more and hold another ball next year."



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