Mariah Hanson is the founder and producer of Club Skirts Dinah Shore Weekend in Palm Springs, CA - a 5-day one-stop destination and international world-class event packed with non-stop activities, a series of huge pool parties, night entertainment, live concerts, comedy shows, and more.
With 25 years under her belt producing The Dinah - the largest lesbian event in the world and the original version of modern Dinah Shore weekend festivities -Hanson has become a voice to be reckoned with, not only turning the event into a life-changing experience for myriads of women who come from all over the world to attend the festivities, but also into a trendsetting hotspot that entertainment industry insiders watch and jockey to book their artists’ performances.
Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, Colbie Caillat, India Arie, The Pussycat Dolls, Havana Brown, Dev, Karmin. Kesha and more recently Iggy Azalea, are just a few examples of major recording artists whom Hanson had booked while still "unknown" and who then systematically went on to hit international superstardom.
Hanson continuously utilizes The Dinah as a platform to mobilize the LGBT community around humanitarian projects and social issues. She famously partnered with a variety of activist associations such as GLAAD, NOH8, The Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center, HRC and Equality California (for which she was a board member for numerous years).
More than just an event promoter extraordinaire, Hanson is first and foremost an avant-garde business entrepreneur who, in the span of two decades, has created an unsurpassed cultural and social phenomenon and built an impressive empire, from a small, one-night event at a Palm Springs museum with 1,500 participants to booking lavish locations at deluxe hotels over five days with some 15,000-plus attendees and major corporate sponsors under her belt.
In 2013 the City of Palm Springs and the Palm Springs Chamber of Commerce ATHENA Committee honored Mariah Hanson for her tremendous contributions to the Palm Springs community by awarding her the prestigious 2013 ATHENA leadership Award - one of the most prestigious events of the Coachella Valley – at the 27th Annual Athena Awards.
An avid horseback rider, Mariah Hanson (who owns four horses) dedicates her spare time trail riding through the mountains around Palm Springs and has recently signed up to earn her certificate in equine therapy, the practice of using horses to help heal people. She also currently writes for The Huffington Post "Gay Voices".
Mariah says "PS I love you because..."
- We often have snow capped mountains in March when it is 90 degrees out. The contrast is striking and never fails to take my breath away. Taking the tram up and going from the two extremes, hot, dry desert to high desert with snow and pines and huge granite boulders is a must do. It's another world up there.
- of our PS Convention Center and The Hilton. The Convention Center's redesign lifted our convention status to the best of the best with those beautiful rock columns and curving design of compact rock boulders. It's the coolest place I have ever thrown a party. The Hilton is the perfect hotel to host The Dinah pool parties. Every year they greet our guests with a warm welcome and genuine excitement. The staff looks forward to The Dinah as much as we do and it makes a huge difference with our guest experience.
- of our Mayor. He's such a smart, intelligent, visionary and he wears Birkenstocks and still looks tres chic. He, our council people, the CVB and the hotel industry have worked so hard to reinvent this city. The glamour of old Hollywood has returned to Palm Springs. Every weekend there is something fun, interesting, educational and athletic do do here. This is no longer a city just for retirees.
- The food is great here! From Trio, to Spencers, Copleys, John Henry's, Azul, Lu Lu's and so many more, you can wine and dine in style in our fair city and you don't have to break the bank to do it.
- of the Desert Riders. This exclusive horse club is the oldest riding club in the Coachella Valley and once boasted Cary Grant as a member. Not only does this group of equine loving people meet every Tuesday to explore the mountains and valleys of the greater Palm Springs area on horseback, they also are actively involved in maintaining trails so that all of our residents and visitors can experience the world class hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding Palm Springs offers.
Fabulous, Mariah! We love you too! I especially appreciate that, in addition to the fact that you're a successful entrepreneur, you're an activist at your core. A great time to say, "You go girl!"
Want to be featured in the "PS I l love you because..." column?
To be considered, email me (Nicholas Snow, SnowbizNow@gmail.com) your top five answers (they can be short or long) to the statement, "PS I love you because..." and/or "PS I love you because I enjoy...", along with two or three biographical paragraphs. Also, send some photos of things you love about the area including, ideally, you doing something you love in the area. Your submission does not guarantee publication. Thanks!