Denver’s sub-zero night-time temperatures did not hinder the celebration at the Mayor’s Pajama Day in downtown Denver. In fact, nearly 400 guests attended the 9th annual PJ Day benefiting Denver’s Road Home held Thursday, February 6 at the Residence Inn Denver City Center, 1725 Champa St.
Denver’s Road Home Executive Director Bennie Milner described the goals and successes of the program before introducing Governor Hickenlooper and Denver Mayor Michael Hancock. The Mayor’s PJ party was launched about 10 years ago by Walter Isenberg, president and CEO of Sage Hospitality and Evan Makovsky, co-founder of NAI Shames Realty.
“The city cannot do this important work alone,” the Mayor said. “The more we stand together, the more powerful of an impact we can make on the community.”
The Mayor’s PJ Day continued a long tradition of guests wearing a wide variety of distinctive, colorful pajama outfits, fuzzy slippers, nightgowns and t-shirts featuring the PJ Day logo or representing supporting non-profits, businesses and organizations. This year, about 80 schools and 70 organizations supported the event by wearing pajamas to school and work.
Among guests on hand were Melanie Lewis Dickerson, Jon Luper and Deb Gray of DRH; Alexxa Gagner of the Denver Rescue Mission; Jim Guttau and Jolinda Cohavi from the Four Seasons; Lenee Koch of LEI Companies; Ramonna Robinson, Jim Licko and Jon Woods from GroundFloor Media; staff from Mile High Behavioral Healthcare; Denver metro area politicos including Arapahoe Commissioner Bill Holen, Aurora City Councilmembers Molly Markert and Debi Hunter Holen, Englewood Mayor Randy Penn and others.
Established in 2005, Denver’s Road Home (DRH) was launched by the Denver Commission to End Homelessness and Denver Human Services with the mission to end homelessness through a variety of programs and partnerships with churches, foundations, non-profits, businesses, government agencies, individuals, and other institutions.
The PJ Party featured a martini luge sponsored by Jim Beam with hors doeuvres, appetizers, cupcakes, and other treats provided by Snooze, the Rialto Café, Second Home Kitchen + Bar and The Corner Office.
Jazz musician Nelson Rangell and his band entertained guests well into the evening as patrons waited for photos at the Black Diamond photo booth or tailor-made gifts produced by the 3D Printing Store.
According to figures from Denver’s Road Home:
An estimated 64% of Denver’s homeless are people in families with children;
One-third of the homeless are working;
The most reported reasons for homelessness in Denver are loss of a job, housing costs and a breakup of a family.
For more information regarding this annual event visit www.pjday.org. To volunteer, donate or support homeless programs and initiatives contact Denver’s Road Home at 720-944-2508 or visit www.denversroadhome.org