The Dolphin Democrats combined business with pleasure when they met at the Pride Center at Equality Park on December 13. The Dolphins’ Holiday Party was held in conjunction with the Club’s regularly scheduled membership meeting. The Dolphins’ event attracted over 60 community members, 15 of which joined or renewed their membership. In addition, 30 toys were donated for the Dolphins’ holiday toy drive.
The Dolphins’ main purpose at the meeting was to allow Club members to make endorsements for next month’s mayoral and city commission elections in Fort Lauderdale. Dolphins members voted by acclamation to endorse City Commissioner Dean Trantalis, a former Club president, for the position of Mayor of Fort Lauderdale. Things were not so simple in the race for City Commissioner, District 2, which is being contested by three gay or gay-friendly candidates: George Castrataro, Steve Glassman and Chad Maxey. Dolphins members voted twice but no candidate received the 2/3 vote he needed to receive the Club’s endorsement. In addition, Commission candidate Tim Smith addressed the group but did not make the deadline needed to be considered for endorsement.
At the Dolphins’ December meeting, public officials and community activists had an opportunity to address the Club. Michael Rajner reported on the move to have the Broward County Commission ban conversion therapy. The group also heard from Broward Sheriff Scott Israel and three representatives from the City of Wilton Manors: Mayor Gary Resnick, Commissioner Tom Green and Police Chief Paul O’Connell. But the Dolphins’ evening was not all work and no play. Once the meeting was over, members and friends proceeded to party, enjoying good food, drink and fellowship.
Two days after the Dolphins’ meeting/party, the Club held its second Membership Mixer at Rumors Bar on Wilton Drive. Organized by Membership Chair Alfredo Olvera, the Mixers are a successful way to reach out to Community members who do not wish to attend Club meetings at the Pride Center. As a result of the Mixer, the Dolphin Democrats gained 7 new members and collected over a dozen toys for the toy drive.
The Dolphin Democrats meet at the Pride Center on the second Wednesday of each month. The evening starts with a brief social period at 7 p.m., with free pizza and sodas, followed by a business meeting at 7:30 p.m. Local activists and political figures often address the meetings.