Winter Party Has Beef With Peter Rauhofer and The Opium Group

A tiff over scheduling has exposed a nasty feud between a famous dj and the group that throws one of the biggest week-long gay and lesbian bashes of the year.

Organizers and supporters of the Winter Party Festival have been circulating a mass email calling for a boycott of dj Peter Rauhofer's appearance at Mansion nightclub. 

The harsh missive asks party-goers to skip the Rauhofer soiree because the DJ and the Opium Group, which owns Mansion, are "profiteering on the backs of the LGBT community." 

Apparently, Winter Party honchos and some of the non-profit agencies they raise money for are upset that Rauhofer's Mansion show is competing against their sanctioned party at Space nightclub in downtown Miami.

The rift dates back to 2008 when Rauhofer broke away from White/Winter Party officialdom. At the time, Rauhofer explained, via a press release, 

that the festivals' main promoters mistreated and disrespected him and

other DJs by, among other things, failing to book their hotels and

paying them with checks that bounced.

"Each year, White Party blatantly takes advantage of the power of being a charity organization for HIV/AIDS to make people feel guilty for not participating or contributing," Rauhofer said then. "They've burned bridges."

In the case of Mansion, Winter Party contacted the Opium Group about hosting its party, said company spokeswoman Vanessa Menkes. But only after the Opium Group had already entered into a contractual agreement with Rauhofer, she added. 

Nevertheless, Menkes noted, the Opium Group has no quarrel with Winter Party organizers or  its supporters.  "We sincerely hope that the mission of Winter Party is realized more than ever this year," Menkes said. "And we are happy to offer them one of our venues free of charge on another Sunday."

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