In a week of community frustration over Mardi Gras’ increasingly volatile future, one positive development came through on Tuesday with Pride announcing it would take up the licence to run this year’s Sleaze Ball.

Pride’s board resolved at a special board meeting on Monday night to take on the event as an 8,000-capacity party held in the The Hordern and The Dome.

Pride co-president Chris Maynard told Sydney Star Observer yesterday that, due to the last-minute nature of their decision, no scenic or DJs had yet been secured for the party.

However, Maynard confirmed that Sleaze 2002 would retain its original theme of In Uniform.

Everything is starting to come together and we’re getting to the stage of looking at contracts and putting details in place. Things are going very smoothly for the event and we’re confident that we’ll be looking at a great party in October, Maynard said.

We’ve brought the break-even figure down and we’re ideally hoping to either break even or generate some money. At the moment we are trying to work out a plan with Mardi Gras’ administrators that perhaps could see us putting any funds generated from the party into a trust to help pay Mardi Gras employees who lost their jobs.

Whoosh Events, who have worked on the last two Mardi Gras Pool Parties, recent DIVAs, and stage shows at Hand In Hand and Mardi Gras parties, will be in charge of production for Sleaze 2002.

Maynard confirmed that all tickets already purchased for Sleaze Ball would be honoured. New tickets will go on sale next week, available from the Toolsheds in Darlinghurst and Newtown for $79 under Pride’s open ticket-sale policy.

Sleaze Ball tickets were originally pegged to cost $85, but Maynard said that since Sleaze tickets already purchased through Mardi Gras were sold at a discount early bird rate, no refund of the variance was necessary.

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