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Winter Party fundraisers: DJ Peter Rauhofer dance party at Mansion competes for gay tourist dollars


BY STEVE ROTHAUS, srothaus@MiamiHerald.com

Dozens of gay South Florida civic leaders are furious that a Grammy-winning DJ and a major Miami Beach nightclub group have again scheduled a dance party at Mansion that they fear will lure gay tourists -- and their money -- from a Winter Party Festival fundraiser on March 7.

Winter Party is a six-day annual festival that attracts 10,000 gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people -- many of them from out of town -- to South Beach, said chairman Chad Richter, who accuses New York-based DJ Peter Rauhofer and Miami Beach's Opium Group of piggy-backing on the fundraiser's tourist draw.

Winter Party events usually sell out. This year's host hotel, the Doubletree Surfcomber Hotel Miami-South Beach, already is fully booked for the March 3-8 festival, Richter said.

Rauhofer checks the calendar for major gay events "and just swoops in," Richter said.

In November 2008, Rauhofer produced a South Beach "Main Event'' dance party at Mansion in direct competition with White Party Week's Noche Blanca fundraiser for Care Resource, Florida's largest AIDS service agency. Four months later, he held another dance party at Mansion that competed with the 2009 Winter Party Festival's Sunday night event at Cameo nightclub on Washington Avenue.

orbit2 Two years ago, 1,910 people attended Winter Party's Cameo party, which grossed $112,000. In 2009, when Rauhofer staged his dance party the same night, only 1,500 people attended the Cameo party. Gross revenue dropped to $76,000, Richter said. That was in contrast to other 2009 Winter Party events, which did not lose attendance.

Winter Party's profits benefit the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and local gay charities including Miami Beach Gay Pride Festival, Miami Gay & Lesbian Film Festival and Pridelines Youth Services. Rauhofer's for-profit dance parties -- which target the same demographic as Winter Party -- benefit the DJ and Opium Group.

"The Opium Group should care . . . about what's happening here in our community. It's not just about dollars," said Babak Movahedi, owner of MOVA lounge off Lincoln Road. He and Richter are among 25 local gay activists who signed an open letter from the Task Force to Rauhofer and Opium Group, asking them to not counter-schedule another event against Winter Party in 2011.

"When they see that so many people care about this in our community, they should think twice about it," Movahedi said.

SexyNeither Rauhofer nor Opium Group marketing manager Carlos Correal returned phone calls seeking comment. Vanessa Menkes, Opium Group publicist, said by e-mail that she is in Israel for a family funeral and unable to give a telephone interview.

Rauhofer also declined a request via Facebook.

"Sorry, I won't be eligible for this interview as my party @ Mansion has NOTHING to do with Winter Party," Rauhofer responded to Miami.com blogger Juan Lopez.

Richter believes Rauhofer's planned March 7 party has everything to do with Winter Party.

"Sunday night is the biggest, most profitable night of the festival," Richter said.

Winter Party was conceived in 1993 as a volunteer, community-based fundraiser to support gay rights in Miami-Dade County.

orbit9The first beach party in 1994 netted $50,000. In March 2003, the festival had grown to several events and generated about $200,000 in profits for its then-owner, the Gay Foundation of South Florida (originally the Dade Human Rights Foundation). That group, in turn, gave grants to the gay film festival, Fort Lauderdale's gay and lesbian community center and Pridelines, a support group for LGBT teens.

The bottom fell out in 2004 when the mismanaged Gay Foundation suddenly closed. The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, the nation's oldest gay civil-rights group, paid the debts in exchange for the foundation's assets -- its annual recognition dinner and Winter Party.

The Task Force agreed to keep one-third of the profits and give two-thirds to South Florida gay nonprofits. The local money is distributed through the Dade Community Foundation's GLBT Community Projects Fund.

Richter fears this year's Winter Party revenue will be worse than last year because the Sunday night party won't be on South Beach. In 2009, Opium Group bought Cameo and told Winter Party planners it wouldn't be available for this year's festival.

"They said they have a very successful straight night [on Sundays at Mansion] and they're going to move it to Cameo and give Peter Mansion, which means there's no venue for us," Richter said. "They're going to push us off the Beach."

Instead, Winter Party will hold its Sunday dance event, Orbit, featuring DJs Tracy Young and Boris at The Terrace above Club Space in downtown Miami. Shuttle buses will run all night between Space and the Surfcomber.

Richter fears that if revenue from this year's Winter Party substantially drops, the Task Force might reconsider future festivals.

"If the festival doesn't do well this year, we're not going to pull the plug," said Russell Roybal, the Task Force's deputy executive director of external relations. "We may try to do things differently in terms of the revenue we're raising, but we're not going to walk away from South Florida."

Winter Party Orbit dance photos by MRNY


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2 years ago, Peter was spinning at a Winter Party event and left the club in the middle of his set. I am not surprised Winter Party is not working with him again. He should be ashamed of what he is doing.

This is foul disgusting and immoral. The devil is real and his demons inhabit the bodies of the GAY.

There is no reason Peter can't spin any other weekend in the year. He would help Miami. Why does he have to hurt something that has been in place and helps the economy and a good cause? Greed is a nasty thing and Peter should lose support from fans and artists over this. Straight or gay, you should be outraged.

I hope people have enough sense to boycott Rauhofer's event

I think if they get rid of Tracy and bring in some International DJ it would kill Peter. Tracy sucks and we are tired of the same T- she plays on the stage. I am not a fan of Peter..

I'm not sure what is the beef. Isnt this capitalism and can't the producers of winterfest simply speak to their followers rather than whining to the press?
Could it be that whats his name is simply supplying a better product? Perhaps y'all should ask him to spin? Oh you did that already?

Everyone is entitled to take advantage of traffic that big events bring in. The more things going on the better. I think the complaints are short sighted.

I am sure you are not crying about stores that are staffing up and stocking up to take advantage of the added traffic.

Why don't they ask this guy to donate a percentage of the profits.

Team up and you will both be better off.

Honestly, no one owns Miami Beach just because they have a big event going on!

for the one who said that the gays are inmoral, no on the very contrary,they inhabit the mind of those that are foolish enough to fall into psudohomosexuality, and on top of that get sexual arousal with someone that has sexual dimorphism, that's gross,bestial, and of course EVIL.WE ALL KNOW HOW DEMONS LOVE SEXUAL DIMORPHISM!!!!!!!STAY AWAY FROM THAT MENTAL PERVERSION!!!!!STOP PSEUDO HERMAFRODITISM!

Man was made for woman.Woman was made for man, anything else is imoral & sick and the person is mentally challenged.

All this talk about the evil gays...
Aren't you christians taught to love your enemy?
I can help you with that if you want to get on your knees again. I'll show you the enemy and you can all turn the other cheek (said rather tongue-in-cheek, of course).

A person that in 2010 still doesn't get that some man like man and some women like women is definitely mentally challenged.

Thats so funny all you gay guys say you dont like "Peter". You know you can't stay mad at a big mean peter.

Let’s not forget that it is the gay people who have catapulted Peter to his popular status. It would appear only morally correct for Peter to give back to the community by supporting AIDS organizations and not his greedy pocket.

I have been a long time fan of Peter, but this action is a strike to those people living with AIDS and to the people who strive hard to support a worthy cause – Shame on you Peter!!

please NO MORE TRACY YOUNG, bring us other great DJ's... these bad decisiciones gives dj's as Peter takes advantage...

Hopefully all this added media attention drives sales for both events and everyone goes home happy. Let us recall that just 10 years ago 3 to 4 of these events on the same night would have had capitvity crowds. If you truly care about the cause, then make an effort to attend the event or send the Gay and Lesbian Task force a check. If you want to go to Mansion to hear Peter's music, then by all means go. Either way, support your gay community and your city. Spend some money! We need to turn this economy around.

This is why the world is in such turmoil today!
People's predjudices, narrow mindeness! No one is willing to just let each other live in peace and harmony. There is so much hate and judgements! We are all created equal and no one should dictate who we love....we should really love everyone...Christian or non. It is so simple and we humans just don't get it! Shame on us! Please people, learn to love your fellow human being no matter what color,race or sexual preference he or she is!

For Christians out there--Christ said, "The greatest commandment is this, that you love one another." I see too much hatred coming from Christians--that's not Christian.

For everyone, there's a good chance someone you know and love is gay. Get the facts about sexual orientation and identity and know that gays and lesbians are God's children, that they are human beings with hearts, souls, who love and hurt and laugh and cry like everyone. They are people you know and love!

The real devil out there is the one that divides, and discriminates and hates and destroys lives just because someone is different. Think of the hateful things that are said and imagine a love one hearing that....

Read Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" and dare to dream for a better world--dare to love. Dare to eradicate racism, discrimination, sexism, homophobia and hatred!

To those not liking Tracy, she is OPENING for internationally acclaimed DJ Boris at Space. So you do have a wonderful alternative to Peter.

Capitolism??? REALLY? It would be ok to hold a for profit event against a Make-A-Wish charity event? It would be ok to screw someone trying to raise money to get their child a life saving operation??? REALLY?

Capitolism would be fine if this weren't a charity event. Peter just wants to screw Winter Party and in turn screw our community and some of you people don't see the problem with that. THAT'S a problem. Would it be ok if someone programed against a Hatian Relief charity???? Would you be so quick to support Peter if he did that?

Sounds like the organizers of the Winter Party are not very confident in their ability to provide top quality entertainment for their festival. They've had a year to plan their scene and find venues and entertainers. Maybe they should invite Charlie Crist to come out and support them.

I find it incredible that Winter Party people cannot find a better venue than someplace in downtown Miami. It sounds like an excuse for what they've learned is a bad decision.

Glennmcgahee .. Opium Group owns the main two clubs in South Beach- Mansion and Cameo- And thanks to Peter, Opium refused to allow WP to use either club. What would YOU have them do? The only alternative is Downtown Miami.

Peter is a disciple of Junior Vazquez, who has been famous for his egotistical and unprofessional behavior over the years. Given this past association, it doesn't surprise me in the least that Mr. Rauhofer would be willing to undermine a fundraiser for one of our communty's primary civil rights organizations. Let's see how many of the purely hedonistic, superficial Winter Party attendees NGLTF loses because of this greedy and irresponsible move.

Where did you put my comment...I for you and you take me off....WTF....Go figure...

If you keep feeding Vermin it will never be destroyed. Translation: Supply=Demand. If there is no body willing to pay for this event then there is NO EVENT...Ask yourselves what is important? Donating money to The Task Force or lining the pockets of a person who obviously care ONLY for himself. Is it any WONDER bad things happen to him? Personally & Professionally??? Can you say, KARMA?

Peter Barhooper is TRASH & A DISGRACE TO the Gay Community~ worse than Perex Hilton. We will get the Word out to all over the country & let everyone who arrives in town for the Winter Party know that in the Big Picture attending the RAT's Party is taking away money that is used to help benefit their own quality of lives. If I was P.R. I would be careful to watch myself while in town after all the enemies he has made.

The NGLTF provides an array of services to protect, defend & elevate the GLBT community. And One would think with Peter's own health issues he would be a bit more compassionate. I loved the description of Peter Barhooper, but since Omnipotent said he was a RAT then the name must be Peter RAThofer. LOL

The only "issues" Peter got is dealing with these lousy shady charity organizations. This smear campaign here is best proof of how they operate. It eats them up how they just can't stop the Rauhofer!

New York City Boy, you say that "The only "issues" Peter got is dealing with these lousy shady charity organizations."

So you think that the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the Dade Community Foundation are "lousy shady charity organizations"? What planet is it that you live on, exactly???!!!

Go get an education, and be glad groups like NGLTF are fighting for your rights, even if you're a dolt.

the Pennyback boys, Alan T and the gay rag Just Circuit are all promoting/advertising Peter's party...SHAME, SHAME, SHAME

For the record, during last White Party (Nov 2009) the competing party Peter set up, yes it had a cheaper door tix price, but inside Cameo that night he or the promoter decided to charge $9 for bottles of water and $10 for ga(y)torade or the nrg drink d'jour (not to mention mixed drinks, or even plain cups of diet-coke at $6). That was way higher than what WP was charging for same drinks at any other of their events.

Oh, and also you better had your Kindle reader handy in case you wanted to go to the restroom, so you could move forward at least two chapters while you were waiting to pee. Yes, seems they couldn’t (or didn’t want) to hire the personnel required to open the second floor. Hence, only the restroom at dance-floor level was open that night. For 1,500 men.

I think that with good communication (and WP definitely has an edge over any other outsider promoter on that end), there are quite some significant competitive advantages that WP could explode to their benefit to attract more patrons to their event, if they promote and position theirs wisely versus Peter’s.

Let the games begin...

Tim (Jan. 31, 2010 2:49PM) JustCircuit does indeed accept advertising from Peter Rauhofers events everywhere and we were turned away by the Task Force as a sponosr due to an exclusivity with NOIZE Magazine this year. (Last year NOIZE took the same ad from Rauhofer but his year is "exclusive media partner" which prevents Task Force--in their own words--from even taking our $50,000+ sponsorship. We were asked by Task Force NOT to take an ad last year...) The Task Force is shutting out a South Florida business in lieu of EXCLUSIVITY, yet pressuring OPIUM GROUP to end ITS exclusivity because this event is hurting their Sunday night. The Task Force is being run into the ground....by the TASK FORCE.
The Task Force preaches INCLUSION, but practices EXCLUSION. LOOK CLOSER....Winter Music Conference has full bars EVERYWHERE, and not all necessarily connected. In THIS dispute this year, we support Peter Rauhofer. His event will be packed with people who are staying in South Florida hotels, eating at restaurants and even going to Winter Party events as well. Feel free to contact me to get a complete laundry list of Task Force bumbles, errors and administrative mistakes which are bringing down their good name.

Winter party is a 3 day event and they're complaining about a closing event on the last night? Logically speaking how could that possibly take any money out of their pockets.. people would still arrive on friday party at winter party events and then on sunday night go to peters party.. and why attack opium group? I heard they already had an event booked at cameo.. how can you attack a club for turning you down when they already have an event booked? thats pretty common practice.. winter party seems like their running a dictatorship and when somebody practices the all-american policy of free trade (like peter rauhofer is doing so).. btw BORIS is NOT 'internationally' acclaimed anybody outside of Miami or NYC thinks Boris is the name of a circus clown

btw theres plenty of other clubs besides cameo and mansion but i guess they must have been turned down as well..

theres dolce
karu & y
living room

and prob lots more those are just the only ones I can think of off the top of my head..

why not send a letter to them?

Also I'd rather just boycott winter party all togther.. id rather pay the ticket price to go to the better party with the better energy on the sunday night and instead of giving the $400 dollars to winter party's pockets (honestly what percentage of that is ACTUALLY going to charity) i'd rather just donate the $400 to a charity that doesnt take money out for 'operating costs'

Funny that the goons at justcircuit.com have interjected themselves into this drama (as they always do!)

Questions for EVERYONE - just exactly how many dollars did justcircuit.com send to its two party beneficiaries for their New Years' "Phoenix Rising" parties? From what we hear, exactly ZERO dollars.

Market your lame event as if you are doing good for our community, then don't give a f'ing dime back...that is Justcircuit.com.

Avoid Peter R - and his buddies at justcircuit.com ..(the circuit monster)

Justcircuit, what a piece of ****. Jokers. They produced a party last year that was HORRIBLE for Winter Party. No doubt Winter Party ran from them this year. Their magazine is negative whining, picking on everyone who doesn't work with them. They have been alienated by practically every organization on the circuit. Funny how one group can destroy what others have taken decades to build.

In NYC we don't hear anything but divisive, girlish bickering from them via emails. What magazine? Wasn't even at White Party. They'll partner with whomever will give them free press.

Funny, can't anyone say what is really happening here? DJ Peter Rauhofer and his minions at JustCircuit are literally STEALING HIV funds from South Florida Residents and beneficiaries of The Task Force. Shame, shame, shame. While I don't believe in hell, I'm sure they already have a suite booked.

Huh? How is Rauhofer stealing money? You should complain to the people who are choosing Peter's event over Winter Party's event. Its them who are spending their money on Peter instead! I doubt Peter is forcing anyone to attend his event. He obviously has a lot of fans who all want to hear him that weekend. Mansion is clever enough to realize that fact, Winter Party isn't. Mansion was jam packed last year. Why does Peter have so many supporters if he "steals"? Makes no sense to me.
Gay Clubs like Score or Twist are also "stealing" money that night then, correct? This all isn't really about him taking money away. Its about jealousy that Peter has the better event and better venue. After all it proves how Winter Party must have burned their bridges in South Beach with many venues....WHY can Peter get Mansion and they can't???

You really should get the facts. DJ Rauhofer and the Opium group are in collusion together, against an HIV fundraiser. If it was a fundraiser for Haiti or Breast Cancer, and a commercial venture came in to take those needed funds, people would be up in arms. If Rauhofer is so good, why doesn't he do a party on ANY OTHER WEEKEND during the year? Why siphon off of this weekend? He could donate $10K to the fundraiser? Or be a part of the festival. But he chooses to instead do neither, and take all the money himself. If you read the article, you see that the festival was not given any of the clubs that would have been competitive - since they are all owned by the same group. I guess if you don't care about HIV positive people getting care and dying, then go to hear DJ Rauhofer.

Andrew Bastion aka Chad Richter.lol

I decided to go to Miami Beach that weekend (from NYC) specifically to go the the Rauhofer and Nissim Work party -- I only found out after that it was Winter Party weekend, and I will also therefore be spending my money and attending some of the other events -- although I would certainly be happier if Rauhofer was donating some of the money he makes at this party to charity, that is his decision. Can't Miami Beach handle two big parties?

People are making a thinking mistake here. Rauhofer's party is not funded or sponsored....unlike any Winter Party event. It's way easier to donate if your party costs you $0. Rauhofer takes a huge risk. Winter party doesn't.

Here's their 2008 tax return showing the Winter Party reported a MAJOR MAJOR loss!!! (before Rauhofer evenhad a party). Granted, I'm no accountant, but taking a loss for a charity event doesn't exactly seem like much charity. So WHERE did all the money from tickets sales go then?
It took 2 minutes to find it on guidestar.org and another 2 minutes to scan through.
Click the link to see the tax return:

Price nobody discusses PRICE. Peter venues are about 40.00, the task force??? over 90.00 !!

And Peter gives you two world known DJs....

PS They day the Task Force keeps only 5% of revenues and gives back 95% to the community...then it will be OK to boycott Peter.

Dear "LOOK AT THIS": Neither link you have sent to an alleged "tax return" shows anything. Both are dead links. What exactly are you trying to prove? That thousands of dollars are raised and given to worthy organizations is well-documented. Look at the Dade Community Foundation website. www.dadecommunityfoundation.org, search "GLBT Community Projects Fund."

Cynics like "New York City Boy" (above), who malign the charitable organizations serving our community as "lousy" and "shady," don't know what they're talking about. But even if they're too stupid and selfish to appreciate all these organizations do, they will still get to benefit from the political and social progress, social services and good works of these groups.

And for James (above) who said they want a world-class fundraiser to give back 95% of proceeds to the community: GET REAL. The only way to do that would be to raise the ticket price exorbitantly, get more corporate sponsors (can you help with that?), or cut back drastically on the party's amenities. A general rule-of-thumb for big fundraising events that expenses amount to between one-third and one-half of the total take. Producing the party less expensively would be very nice, but it's not realistic. James, if you better ideas, get involved and help out, rather than just carping and criticizing from the sidelines.

Peter Rauhofer has behaved selfishly and dishonorably for years. I'm proud of the Task Force, and the people who signed on to this letter, for finally taking him on, head-on.

Support your community. Attend only OFFICIAL Winter Party events.

And, Oh, By The Way....should you think that this is something new by the unscrupulous Mr. Rauhofer....check out JoeMyGod's blog from 2009.


To the poster "Brad Richter":
I remember Peter Rauhofer supporting Winter Party numerous times. I heard him at countless official events throughout the last years. You guys must have pissed him off big time. It is so obvious to everyone that this all isn't really about Peter all of a sudden being greedy. Your events are all funded and sponsored. I doubt his events are. He probably spends more money than he makes that night.
Also,a superstar like Peter makes way more money when he is just getting hired as a "DJ" at any club anywhere. So all your accusations make no sense. I think Winter Party underestimated Peter and his loyal huge following big time and shot themselves in the foot.

Ooh by the way:
Here is the correct link for WP Tax return:
...can't wait for you guys to twist it around...lol


Who is "Brad Richter"? I don't see a poster "Brad Richter" here.

The "superstar" (LOL) Peter Rauhofer has a history of opportunism, greed and lying, as anyone who has dealt with him knows. Rauhofer's attempts to divide and malign the nonprofit organizations that serve our community is not only stupid, it's just evil. Thousands of volunteers, donors and sponsors support these groups, and they do it because they believe in fairness, equality and service to others. Peter "superstar" Rauhofer's overblown ego doesn't hold a candle to the good-heartedness of these folks.

Your link to the alleged "WP Tax return" is odd. It's three lines of figures, taken out of context, with no date on it. Is it authentic? Does it mean anything? Very hard to tell. I wouldn't be surprised if it were fabricated, because your comments make it seem as if you're one of Rauhofer's minions (or maybe even Rauhofer himself!)

Again, I direct you to the website of the Dade Community Foundation for details on the beneficiaries of National Gay & Lesbian Task Force events.


Brad (not Richter)


The Terrace @ Club Space can fit how many people (400 or so?)


Manson's 2800+ Cap.

The Grammy Winner or one "train wreck" tracy...

If Mr Wolman the Co-producer of this event with the TaskForce
Can't sell 400 tickets then people don't want to go...

If he really thought he party be a draw maybe he would have rented the whole venue, not the smallest room in 2500+ person nightclub.. Right?

If I recall didn't,
Ms. Young Spin with Mr. Rauhofer against the TaskForce-JUST LAST YEAR.

I'm sorry that Boris has to be in the middle of all this he is going to be the only reason that party might sell out... but with nasty PR, and Shameless tactics of Wolman Events, The Task Force Fueled by there mouth piece at sites that don't event need to be named. Good luck..


Did Wolman Events Pay a flat fee to Winter Party this like they did with White Party so they could take 100% of the door?

Shady Right? - Do you homework people... it's clear when you finally sober up what is really the driving force behind this...

But this is all because Mr. Wolman has a personal problem with Rauhofer going back beyond 2006 when Hilton Bussed people to from Charity?

My how you so called do gooders have forgotten that...

It's time to ask Rea Carey to Resign!

I got to respond to this..I do not work for the Gay task Force nor for Peter. I suggest you guys report on the profits that is kept by the Task Force to pay for their employees, etc. i suggested you report on how Peter Rauhofer has supported this charity for years! i suggest you report on how Hilton one of the promotors for this event keeps the majority of it's profits. I suggest you do a story on how Tracy Young who is spinning the Sunday night big party has also thrown her own successful non sanction parties on this week. Instead of all this drama, work with these DJ's even for a small profit, it's something. Unfortunately, WhiteParty and WinterParty are not totally honest about what they make and how much of it is actually charity! Do your research, i did!!!!!

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