Bars Join AIDS Memorial Fund Drive on December 1

A rendering of the AIDS Memorial Park planned for the West Village. | AIDS MEMORIAL PARK PROJECT

Advocates of a permanent AIDS memorial to be built on a portion of parkland being developed adjacent to the former St. Vincent’s Hospital campus are enlisting the support of gay and lesbian bars across the city to help raise the $4 million needed to move the effort forward.

The AIDS Memorial Park Project, which aims to honor the 100,000 New Yorkers who died of AIDS and the leadership of activists who responded to the crisis, will encompass a 1,600-square-foot triangle at the corner of a larger park planned for land situated between 12th Street, Seventh Avenue South, and Greenwich Avenue. The Project will also develop an online history and resource guide to the epidemic.

The Project is providing volunteers for bars, who will ask for small donations of up to $5 from patrons on December 1, which is World AIDS Day.

As Gay City News goes to press on November 20, participating establishments include G Lounge, Barracuda, Industry, Therapy, the Eagle, Splash, and the Ritz.

Of the $4 million budget, Project supporters hope to raise $1.15 million from individuals, $850,000 from foundation gifts, and roughly $2 million from government funding. Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer has already verbally pledged $1 million toward the project, and the park’s advocates are talking about a similar funding level from City Council Speaker Christine Quinn.

Bars interested in participating in the fundraising drive should contact Eric Sawyer at sawyere@unaids.org or Paul Kelterborn at pkelterborn@gmail.com. For more information on the AIDS Memorial Park, visit aidsmemorialpark.org/.

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