I remember scrolling through my timeline on Facebook and seeing pictures of this party in Hyde Park. Everyone looked so artistic and slayed. At first glance, I thought this was a party just for women, but after messaging a friend on Facebook, I learned the party was for everyone actually. So, during one December weekend, I decided to go to this party where I met a wellness expert, a founder, and editor-in-chief of a magazine, and a bomb ass DJ. This party was Party Noire.
On September 4th, 2016, Party Noire celebrated their one-year anniversary. Voted as Chicago's Best Dance Party, the sold-out event not only catered to their guest but to the community as well. Guests were treated to free Hennessy cocktails for two hours and were given the opportunity to register to vote and learn about safe sex. Artist Barrett Keithley was doing a live painting during the hours of the party (and even hit some two-steps on the dance floor, yeah I saw you). DJ Rae Chardonnay (one of the curators of Party Noire), DJ Manti, and DJ Lisa Decibel were on the 1’s and 2’s while the in-house photographer, RJ Eldrige, captured everyone’s unique outfits and fun moments throughout the event (RJ was also a big fan of my tank top, which he happen to see when the DJ played Michael Jackson’s “Black or White”).
Party Noire’s one-year anniversary celebration was nothing short of amazing. The atmosphere was amazing as usual. The frequent guest came, of course, but each time I’ve been to Party Noire, there is always a new crop of faces, and this party particularly showed how much the Party Noire brand has expanded.
Party Noire has been a staple for black millennials in Chicago. As much as I love my city, I will admit the social scene for African-Americans in Chicago can be quite scarce. For starters, we are in Chicago, widely known for being the most segregated city in the country. With that mind, there have been numerous reports of racial discrimination from African-American club patrons and African-American club owners, Nouveau Tavern being one of the most recent examples. While the mainstream African-American social scene is declining, the social scene for queer people of color is almost non-existent with the high racial tensions and classism in the Boystown neighborhood. Party Noire is the party for those who aren’t able to express themselves. It is a utopia for intellectual, carefree black boys and girls who want to embrace other like-minded millennials.
Congrats to the curators, Lauren, Nick, and Rae for an amazing year! To many more!