Photos: Bradley & Ben Murray
In just five months since its inception, Ryan Duncan’s Pink Sock party at the Wonderland Ballroom in Columbia Heights has already had a profound impact on the venue. The bar prepares in advance to have enough staff to handle the crowd packing the upstairs of Wonderland on the third Wednesday of every month. And, straight neighbors have started to stop by with eager anticipation to see what this mostly-gay party has in store each month.
It’s the unexpected that largely keeps Pink Sock’s patrons coming back to Wonderland each month. In January, an impromptu pillow fight at Pink Sock Presents Zac Efron’s Pajama Party covered every surface of the upstairs bar with feathers while a gospel choir and flapper girl brought down the house in February with a surprise performance from The Color Purple that was snuck-in between DJ sets.
When the third Wednesday of March fell on St. Patrick’s Day, Duncan and his helpers doused the upstairs of Wonderland in green. While many bars do that on St. Patrick’s Day (or St. Patrick’s Gayas Pink Sock christened the night), Duncan went a bit further by hoisting a piñata of Colin Ferrel above the dance floor and inviting patrons to beat the daylights out of the Irish actor until he showered the bar with candy.
The highlight of the night came when two adorably short-statured gay men (pocket gaysin gay slang) donned skimpy leprechaun outfits and performed an Irish step dance on stage. As the crowd’s attention was turned to them, a cloaked figure made his way through the crowd and pushed his way onto the stage. As the music suddenly switched to Gold by Amanda Lear, the mystery figure’s black cloak was thrown off to reveal Jason Barnes (who is quickly establishing himself as one of D.C.’s newest, and most creative, guerrilla performance artists) in a gold dress, hat and gold make-up. As the performance progressed, Barnes shimmied out of his dress to reveal a torso dripping in gold paint and glitter, showering the crowd with gold dust as he spunt through the audience to end his performance of Goldern, Gold from The Wiz.
The large crowd continued to dance as DJMJR of the Shift party spun following the midnight performance. DJMJR was joined earlier in the night by Duncan (DJRAD) and DJ Brian Jones.
Pink Sock is the Third Wednesday of every month at Wonderland Ballroom.