If you’ve ever been to a House of Yes event before, you know that the former ice warehouse has recently turned itself into one hell of a performance venue. Located at 2 Wyckoff Avenue, the complex is known for hosting an impressive variety of fantastically creative events and performances — and often for a good cause.
Luckily for us, the uplifting masters of revelry don’t plan on slowing down any time soon. This May 15th, the 6th Annual Mermaid Lagoon Ocean Benefit will return to the House of Yes to raise money for the Billion Oyster Project, and continue supporting Orca Network in their quest to retire Lolita, the 20-foot-long orca who has lived at the Miami Seaquarium since 1970.
Attendees (who are “strongly encouraged” to dress in oceanic-themed attire) should expect an evening of performance, dance, games, revelry and song — all in the name of the ocean.
“The Mermaid Lagoon Benefit traditionally donates its proceeds to a local organization — this year we chose BOP — and to an organization that follows whales and dolphins in captivity. That has always been an important thing for us to address,” says Kai Altair, the main producer and creator of the event.
BOP is a long-term, large-scale plan to restore one billion live oysters to New York Harbor over the next twenty years. In the process, they aim to train thousands of young people in New York City to care for their marine environment.
The Orca Network is similarly dedicated to raising awareness about the astounding lives of whales and the importance of providing them healthy and safe habitats: Kai characterizes this year’s beneficiary Lolita as the most eligible whale orca in all of captivity for rehabilitation, not least because Lolita’s mother is still alive. In fact, when Lolita is finally released (Kai tells us there’s already a sea-pen created specifically for her; she won’t be set back into water ill-suited for her species) she’ll be able to have her own family reunion, after 44 years of separation.
“Our hearts are so deeply in this,” says Altair, who in the past six years has brought on two additional co-producers for the benefit: Dr. Debra Tillinger and Ali Luminescent, both of whom are among the several notable performers on the evening’s schedule.
The benefit will also serve up The Alchemist’s Kitchen’s state-changing elixirs at the “Special” bar, and will feature two “mystic” musicians.
“As circus performers, we do a lot of great circus tricks,” explains Altair. “We love to support the idea that whales and dolphins shouldn’t be doing those things. Leave it to us.”
The 6th Annual Mermaid Lagoon Ocean Benefit takes place this May 15th from 8pm – 2 am at House of Yes, 2 Wyckoff Avenue, off of the Jefferson stop on the L train. Tickets are $10/$15 @ door, with all proceeds going to charity. Buy your tickets here, visit BOP on Facebook here, and learn more about the non-profit Orca Network on Facebook here.