Provincetown loses Birdman fundraiser

Bay WindowsEnd of Birdman
Gay Men’s Domestic Violence Project loses insurance for event

Ethan Jacobs, [email protected] 

End of BirdmanThe Gay Men’s Domestic Violence Project (GMDVP) announced Jan. 17 that it has retired its annual Provincetown Birdman fundraiser due to the organization’s inability to secure insurance for the event. The Birdman competition, which had become a signature Provincetown event since it was launched in 2003, featured contestants in colorful costumes jumping off MacMillan Pier to see who could stay aloft for the longest time, and contestants came ready to fly while dressed as everything from flamingoes to dragon flies to Wonder Woman. GMDVP Executive Director Curt Rogers said members of the P’Town community are sad to see the event end.

“We’ve talked to all of our sponsors… everybody was sad, and yet supportive,” said Rogers. “I think everyone understood that this was a possible reality.”  

GMDVP first encountered problems obtaining insurance for the event last year, when the organization was notified the week before the event by its insurer, the North Carolina-based First Financial Insurance, that they could not cover contestants jumping off the pier. They also claimed that contestants had never been covered in GMDVP’s insurance policies from the past events.

Birdman's downsized event last year produced half the egg

GMDVP made a last-minute scramble to secure insurance for the event, but no other provider would agree to cover participants either. Ultimately GMDVP held a dramatically downscaled event, with contestants leaping into the pool of the Crown & Anchor, and the organization took a major financial hit. In 2004 the event brought in about $14,000, but last year it only brought in about half of that... Read the rest of this Bay Windows story here, and make your comments below.

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