Gays Win BIG in Atlantic City
Given that Monopoly first taught most of us the value of real estate - and that Miss America taught us that beauty trumps brains - where would the LGBT community be without Atlantic City? As the birthplace of those cornerstones of American culture - real estate and beauty, of course - Atlantic City has long held a grasp on the LGBT imagination. Think that’s crazy? Not so much.
For years, every September inaugurated the start of beauty pageant season on that fabled resort along the Atlantic Ocean- and when those Miss America contestants walked the Boardwalk in outrageous footwear confections designed to highlight their home states (think the Mermaid Parade in Coney Island, sponsored by Manolo Blahnik and Jimmy Choo), there were more than a dozen gay bars and clubs within the town’s perimeter. (Where else were all those pageant queens going to go?) Times change, however, and now it’s the gaming industry that’s reviving LGBT nightlife- specifically Harrah’s Entertainment.
As the casinos long ago figured out, more than 14 million adults live within 100 miles of Atlantic City- and if one in ten of those 14 millions is gay... Do the math, kids- it’s a gay parade on the Boardwalk waiting to happen again. A whole new meaning for Miss America... And that’s where Harrah’s - with vision and foresight - has been headed- specifically in their sponsorship and organization of Weekend OUT in AC.
Held during the final weekend of September, the Weekend OUT in AC was the first (3-day) weekend-long celebration specifically tailored for the LGBT community. Revelers came from nearby neighborhoods, New England cities, and even as far away as Florida and California, and with celebrities including Amanda Lepore, Cazwell, Jai Rodriguez, Lance Bass and the ladies of The L Word, even those from the other side of the country agreed that it was well worth the while. More than 1,000 participants wined, dined, played, and were entertained; the weekend was a rousing success that put Atlantic City back onto the LGBT tourist map.
Of course entertaining the LGBT community is no new thing for Harrah’s- they’ve been catering to us for years in Vegas, so they know what boys and girls like. When in Atlantic City, it’s probably best to put yourself in Harrah’s good hands. As the world’s largest casino company, Harrah’s Entertainment owns four of Atlantic City’s major players: Harrah’s, Showboat, Bally’s, and Caesars- each casino geared to a specific demographic and overall theme.
Harrah’s, for example, upped the ante with the recent addition of their 45-story Waterfront Tower and their geodesic-domed pool/oasis, where the temperature is always 82 degrees.
Think January, people- and think Harrah’s.
Penn Station to Atlantic City (in style)
On another note, Harrah’s Entertainment was the first - and only - gaming entertainment company to achieve a perfect score (twice!) on the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index. Going one step further, Harrah’s has also endorsed the Employment Non-Discrimination Act on a federal level.
What does that mean to you? It means you can shop, dine, play, and gamble at Harrah’s with the knowledge that your LGBT dollars are promoting a more equitable world for the LGBT community.
With the recent advent of the ACES train (Atlantic City Express Service), New Yorkers can take advantage of direct service between Manhattan’s Penn Station and Atlantic City aboard a new luxury train that gets you to the Boardwalk in just over two hours- giving you the best of Vegas without the stress of air travel.
As one of those "Best Places for LGBT People to Work" companies, Harrah’s provides the kind of accommodating hospitality for which LGBT people are often known- as well as a surfeit of eye candy.