“Not bad for 76 years old, huh?” Elvis teased the audience in between crowd favorites.

Image: Dan Cronin

FOR PORTLAND PHILANTHROPISTS, sit-down dinners, sleepy speeches and auctions might be getting a bit old. Bradley Angle stepped in to mix up the fundraising effort with their first annual Purple Ribbon Party held at the Bagdad Theater on Saturday April 17. The theme was Legends in Lights, and the guests of honor included none other than both the King and Queen—yep, Elvis and Tina Turner. Remarkably authentic Elvis, Tina Turner and Cher impersonators were there to sing, dance, and whip the crowd into a general frenzy.

Noted hostess Poison Waters welcomed everyone to the party with stunning costume changes and a roll-with-the-punches attitude. “This isn’t your round table, rubber chicken dinner benefit!” she exclaimed, before inviting guests to dance, clap, and run around during the show. She also emceed the auction, which featured everything from a guitar autographed by B.B. King to assorted vacation packages.

“We were so bored of sit-down dinner fundraisers and wanted to mix it up and do something more fun,” said Board Chair Karen Peterson. “Any way we can raise money while making our Board Chair laugh is a good fundraiser to me,” said Executive Director Mary Dzieweczynski.

All of the fun was for a good cause—to benefit Bradley Angle, the first domestic violence shelter on the west coast. The organization aims to demystify domestic violence and offer a voice to victims. Also, Bradley Angle is expanding its LGBTQ programs and remains committed to helping anyone, regardless of race, age, orientation, or gender affiliation.

Be sure not to miss their next party, which we hear is rumored to involve superheroes.