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Crowd Shot of over 50 Build Me Up Buttercup attendees in the William Way Ballroom wearing their cocktail attire mingling and listening to music.

(Photo Credit: Femi Matti) Build Me Up Buttercup prom attendees enjoying the food and music.


Our first Build me up Buttercup Prom was a huge success! Thank you to all of our buttercups for building us up and not letting us down. We are so grateful to everyone who joined us Saturday for a truly magical night of music, dancing, and fun to raise money for the Build the Way renovation project here at William Way. Your enthusiasm made the event a remarkable and memorable evening!



With your support, we were able to raise $55,930 (and counting!)

Prom attendees gathered near a table enjoying cocktails and laughing

(Photo Credit: Femi Matti) Nina Abbot from the Vanguard OPEN Crew Resource Group enjoying the prom vibe

 Oh What A Night

The evening began with a cocktail hour in the lobby, beautifully decorated by Xtraordinary Events, with passed hors d’oeuvres and cocktails to wet appetites. Then our guests moved to the upstairs ballroom, where they were greeted by a full spread of Moroccan and French delights from Sofi’s Corner Catering. Complimenting the feast was Philly-based drag singer, songwriter, and designer Cookie Diorio.  Cookie

Picture of singer and performer Cookie Diorio (center) with prom committee member Armando Lllanes posing for a photo.

(Photo Credit: Femi Matti) The talented singer-songwriter Cookie Diorio (center) posing with prom committee member Armando Llanes(right).

got the party started first by wowing the crowd with a magical performance, and she kept the party jumping throughout the night with her quick wit and wonderful voice which she used brilliantly to not only serenade our guests but also to emcee our live auction. Speaking of auction, there was a plethora of amazing items at the event including stays at the sea, Philadelphia Ballet tickets, luxury wine, beauty goods, exclusive dining experiences at Phiily’s top restaurants, and more that led to a night of friendly competition toward winning our live and silent auctions.

A person standing at one of the catering tables making a plate of food with rice, veggies and fish while a server observes

(Photo Credit: Femi Matti) Sofi’s Corner Catering provided a plethora of fine fare at the prom.

What’s a party without some music to set the mood? Accolades to Melody Reflux (DJ Ed Wong) who provided music for the dancefloor. 

William Way saw some familiar faces during the prom and fundraiser while also welcoming many first-time visitors to our historic home. Guests were able to see the current building and learn about the exciting new changes on the agenda for the Build the Way project, like more accessibility for program members and visitors. We had such a wonderful time talking to guests about the future of William Way and how we can all be a part of the vision for our community as we continue to Build the Way.

four prom attendees posed and smiling for a photo. One attendee is holding a beverage and one is wearing a red suit with a red bowtie.

(Photo Credit: Femi Matti) Prom attendees dressed to impress and ready for the live auction to begin

Thank you to our Host Committee: Dennis Duffy, Armando Llanes, Amy Cooper, Charles Perkins, Heather Steinmiller, and Tom Swartzendruber 

Thank you to our Sponsors: The Vanguard Group; Greenberg Traurig, Gallagher Insurance, Risk Management and Consultants; Dennis Duffy/KW Philly Realtor; Melody Reflux; The Philadelphia Ballet; Sofi’s Corner Catering; Tito’s Handmade Vodka; Woody’s; and Xtraordinary Events.

Thank you to our live and silent auction donors: Inn at Cook Street Bed & Breakfast, Winkel, Jim Norris, Mixto, Buca D’Oro, Vintage and Matine’s Cafe, Optimal Gym, Greg Rossi Salon, Massage Intuition Philly, Philadelphia Sports Clubs, Winsome Barbershop, FLX Goods, and Tavern on Camac. And of course, Cookie Diorio!

Silent auction table with four silent auction sheets with pens and signage with auction images and description with wine giftbasket prize displayed on the table.

(Photo Credit: Femi Matti) Silent Auction prizes ranged from tickets to the Philadelphia Ballet to a bed and breakfast stay in Provincetown.

All proceeds from the event will support our Build the Way capital campaign to transform and rebuild our existing community center into an expansive, inclusive, colorful, and unabashedly queer space for all LGBTQIA+ folks to gather, celebrate, learn, and find life-giving support. 

On behalf of the entire William Way and event team, we wanted to say thank you to all of our attendees for your support for the Build Me Up Buttercup! Prom and Fundraiser. Thank you to each and every one of you for making the event a monumental success and we hope to see you and all that couldn’t attend, at William Way again soon!

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If you were unable to attend the Build Me Up Buttercup you can still visit our Get involved page to learn more about what we do at the center, and please emails us at anytime with questions!