Awards shows may be a great way to spend an evening, but at the end of the day you’re usually watching a bunch of fancy rich people give shiny trophies to a bunch of other fancy rich people while even more fancy rich people watch. Plus, the elite group who voted for the nominees? They’re more than likely to also be fancy rich people. But then, there’s the Brooklyn Nightlife Awards, where the performers getting trophies (well, more like bricks with plaques on them) may look fancy, but it’s probable they creatively cobble together most of their eye-catching outfits and props using stuff from thrift shops and the dollar store, just like the rest of us.
Now in its sixth year, the Brooklyn Nightlife Awards celebrates all kinds of “excellence in nightlife,” from bloggers and bartenders to drag queens/kings and fashion designers, to name just a few. There’s even a “Best Reason To Leave Brooklyn” award, given to the events that make that treacherous late-night train wait worth it. Rather than being held in an ornate ballroom or wherever big award shows happen, it will be in the modest back room of Bushwick bar and venue Gold Sounds. Be prepared to get cozy, as I can only assume it’ll be a packed house. Your hosts for the evening will be drag performer and BNA founder Merrie Cherry and Miss Malice of drag and burlesque collective Switch N’ Play, who is also nominated for “Best Emcee/Femmecee.”
Plus, you’ll be able to choose who wins. Yes, you. Until June 1, you can vote for your favorite in each of the 27(!) categories. You do have to vote for every category in order to submit the voting form, so even if there are some where you don’t know any of the candidates, maybe just pick the name you think is the most fun or something, I don’t know. Or do some research—nightlife folks love Instagramming.
Next week’s ceremony will surely be flashy and indulgent, but it’ll also be for a good cause: a “majority of the proceeds” made will be donated to the Queer Detainee Empowerment Project, a local organization assisting LGBTQ, gender non-conforming, intersex, and HIV-positive people who have been recently released from immigration detention.
The 6th Annual Brooklyn Nightlife Awards happen Friday, June 8 at Gold Sounds. Presale tickets available here. Voting closes June 1.