Oscar® Experience: Benefits
Oscar® Experience: Benefits, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' grassroots program that enables charities to host glamorous fund-raising parties on Oscar Sunday, will kick off its 20th year in 2013.
On Sunday, February 24, 46 charities in as many locations will host official viewing parties during the 85th Academy Awards® ceremony. The events will feature the live broadcast of the Awards presentation, which will be televised by the ABC Television Network.
"Oscar Sunday is an event meant to be a shared with others. This network of fundraising parties across the nation is just that: a shared experience. These gatherings also represent the year-round philanthropic work the Academy does," said Academy CEO Dawn Hudson. "This February we are thrilled to be able to celebrate the movies with fans nationwide while supporting charities around the country."
Most parties are black-tie affairs, though some are less formal. Some partygoers dress up as famous couples, and some events feature limousine arrivals and red carpets complete with local celebrities, paparazzi and press interviews for arriving guests.
To set these parties apart from the thousands of other events taking place on Oscar Night®, each Oscar Experience: Benefits party receives from the Academy copies of the official commemorative poster and the official Oscar show program among other items.
Only one charity party in a given media market may participate in Oscar Experience: Benefits. Events are entirely produced by local nonprofit organizations, with the active participation of the local ABC-TV affiliate station.
Last year, 49 charities hosted viewing parties for the 84th Academy Awards, raising over $3.15 million, all of it remaining in local communities. With a 16,649 guests attending nationwide, Oscar Experience: Benefits 2012 benefited such charities as the American Red Cross, Ronald McDonald House, Special Olympics, the United Way, Starlight Children's Foundation and the Ellie Fund (breast cancer support services).
Oscar Experience: Benefits 2013
Participating cities include Albuquerque, Atlanta, Boston, Buffalo, Charlottesville, Chicago, Cincinnati, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Hartford, Greenville, Hartford, Honolulu, Houston, Indianapolis, Knoxville, Las Vegas, Little Rock, Los Angeles, Louisville, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Nashville, New Orleans, Oklahoma City, Omaha, Orlando, Palm Beach, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Piedmont-Triad, Providence, Richmond, St. Louis, Salt Lake City, San Antonio, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Shreveport, Springfield, Springfield, Tampa, Tucson, Washington D.C., Western Michigan (Grand Rapids).
Since its inception in 1994, the program has generated over $36.6 million in funding for a wide spectrum of charitable organizations – every cent staying within the community where it was raised, none going to the Academy.