''We wanted to do something unique when it came to Cherry weekend, and we knew there hadn't been a country women's dance ever before,'' says Anita Broccolino, the organizer behind this year's official women's event.
Until this year the women's event focused on contemporary club music. But this year the Saturday night party is focused on country music and dancing, with local DJs Nan and Cory. ''Cherry Country'' may seem like it's practically in the country, too, with boots set to hit the dance floor at DeLounge in Wheaton, Md.
Find pics of Cherry Women's Events from 2003-2005
''We thought that it would be fun to include folks who might feel D.C. was a little bit too far'' to go for a night out, Broccolino explains. "[DeLounge] had been doing some country dance nights there already, so it was kind of a natural,'' says Broccolino, who also serves as development director for the Mautner Project for Lesbian Health, one of the Cherry Fund's 2006 beneficiaries.
During Cherry Country's first hour, Broccolino says free dance lessons will be offered in both two-step and line-dance. ''This is a great opportunity for folks who have never tried country dancing and may have been intimidated by it,'' she says. And all throughout the night ''dance angels'' will be available to lead the uninitiated, in exchange for a suggested donation that will go directly to Mautner.
''For a dollar a dance these experienced country dancers will dance with you,'' Broccolino says of the dance angels. ''They'll spin you around the floor and make you look fabulous.''
For those women who crave a regular club event in the city over the weekend, one option would be to join their gay brethren -- and they certainly won't be alone if they do. Philly-based lesbian DJ Melissa will spin house music Saturday at the 9:30 Club. And another lesbian, Alyson Calagna, will also spin house at the After-Hours at Platinum.
''When I started I was one of the only girls in my hometown that spun records,'' Calagna says. ''Now there are millions of girl DJs all over the world spinning in all scenes from hip hop to underground and everything in between.''
Cherry Country takes place Saturday, April 22, at De Lounge [link], 11305 Georgia Avenue, Wheaton, Md. 8:30 p.m. $25 Suggested donation. For more information on this and other Cherry events, visit www.cherryfund.org.