By Megan Wadding, May 2017 Issue.
Jeffrey Sanker’s White Party in Palm Springs, California draws tens of thousands of gay men from all over the world for a weekend-long dance and pool party extravaganza.
The 28th annual festivities, which will include guest appearances by the hottest DJs from around the world, pool parties and celebrity sightings, will take place May 5-8 at the Renaissance Hotel and other locations throughout Palm Springs.
Originally, the White Party weekend was a large gathering of Sanker’s friends. This year, he said he expects more than 30,000 attendees to descend upon the desert throughout the weekend.
“I am thrilled,” Sanker said. “The response has been amazing.”
According to Sanker, the White Party weekend, which had always been held in April has now been moved to May for the first time, which he believes is the reason more people are able to attend.
“[Attendees come from] all over the world,” Sanker said. “We see a lot from Canada, Australia and Europe, as well as many from all over the USA.”
Many of the attendees come from Arizona each year, Sanker said.
“We see a large contingency of Phoenix and Tucson boys every year,” he said. “Arizona boys are very representative of their state: HOT!”
As always, the parties that fill the weekend will be feature music by DJs from all around the globe.
“[There will be DJs] that are getting a lot of press in the LGBT[Q] community, as well as those that have worked with major labels and stars,” Sanker said.
DJs throughout the weekend include DJ Dan Slater, DJ Abel Aguilera, DJ Danny Verde, as well as, Tom Stephan and Bret Law, both of whom will be making their White Party debuts this year, and more.
Sanker said he draws his inspiration for the wild parties by staying current and by paying attention to what is relevant in pop culture.
“I try to always keep my finger on the pulse of what’s hot, and what is up and coming, and travel the world for more ideas every year,” he said.
This year, there will be a total of eight parties in a 72 hour-period.
The weekend kicks off May 5 with the Friday Splash 1 “Dive In” pool party at the Renaissance pool, featuring the music of DJ Phil B. Followed by the new PAPA Dark “Leather, Sweat and Sex” party, which is being described as a “decadent, bacchanal exploration of music, leather and fantasy” according to Sanker. The party will feature DJ Tomo Woodland and DJ Isaac Escalante.
The Splash 2 “Addicted to Boys” pool party, featuring DJ Bret Law and DJ/Producer Duo, Grind and Toy Armada will take pace May 6 and feature live DJs and a swimwear fashion show beside the largest pool in Palm Springs. That evening the infamous White Party, which will take place May 6 at the Palm Springs Convention Center, will feature a military theme, an internationally known surprise performer.
White Party: Held at the Palm Springs Convention Center, the party will feature the music of DJ Suri, DJ Dan Slater and DJ Aron.
The all-night after-party, Climax, will take place at the Renaissance Event Center and will feature DJ Tom Stephan of London.
The Splash 3 “One Day in Heaven” pool party, featuring the beats of DJ Wayne G, kicks off May 7. And the Sunset T-Dance is held Sunday night on the outdoor dance floor, under the large Ferris wheel, at White Party Park. The party will feature DJ Abel Aguilera and SJ Ralphi Rosario.
While Carlisle will headline as the Queen of the the weekend, she will perform her greatest hits as dusk hits May 7 at the White Party T-Dance, followed by a choreographed fireworks display, set to an exclusive remix, a White Party weekend tradition.
This marks Carlisle’s White Party debut, and said she is very excited to be headlining this year.
“I’ve been wanting to perform at this event for years, since it looks like too much fun and I’ve seen all the legendary artists who have come before me,” Carlisle said. “Plus, as a mom of a gay son who had a blast at the White Party last year and who will be attending with me this year, I’m so proud to be part of such a great iconic event.”
This year, “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” star, Kyle Richards, will be reigning over the White Party and the T-Dance this year, according to Sanker.
“She was chosen as our Queen because she exemplifies everything that White Party stands for: creativity, acceptance, beauty, laughter and glamour,” said Sanker. “She is the epitome of confidence, and a champion of supporting those who are proud of who they are.”
As night falls on Sunday, the WE Party begins. DJ Binomio and DJ Danny Verde, both from Madrid, will be filling the evening with music.
“Our closing party is one that is gonna knock your socks off,” said Sanker. “You will literally leave your inhibitions at the door.”
The weekend also will include early morning yoga sessions for attendees.
“There is something for everyone,” Sanker said. “See you on the dance floor! Pace yourselves[sic], boys!”
Jeffrey Sanker's White Party Palm Springs
Renaissance Palm Springs Hotel (and other locations throughout Palm Springs)
888 E. Tahquitz Canyon Way, Palm Springs