Bingay – ACON Fundraiser


Join us on Thursday 6 February as we dust off the Christmas tinsel, shrug off the New Year’s confetti and greet the arrival of the festival season with a bang! We’ll be transforming the Beresford Hotel into a poolside playground. Think French Riviera meets Porpoise Spit. Don your best summer outfit (think Hawaiian shirts and novelty sunnies) – there are prizes for best dressed.

DATE: Thursday 6 February 2020
TIME: 7pm-late
LOCATION: 354 Bourke St, Surry Hills
TICKETS: $20 all games, all night with 100% of proceeds supporting ACON




For the third year, we are returning to the  Colour the Streets festival at Barangaroo to wreak more havoc, tomfoolery, shenanigans and fabulous Bingay fun in the harbourside precinct! Join us as we take over the stunning Wild Sage café on Thursday 20 February. With lush décor, gorgeous alfresco dining, delicious food and scrumptious cocktails, Wild Sage Barangaroo is the perfect place to experience Bingay outdoors!

DATE: Thursday 20 February 2020
TIME: 6.30pm-late
LOCATION: Wild Sage, Exchange Place, 3 Sussex St, Barangaroo
TICKETS: $20 all games, all night with 100% of proceeds supporting ACON




Join us as we get into the Mardi Gras spirit with a special rainbow edition of Bingay … BINGAY PRIDE! On Wednesday 26 February – during Mardi Gras Week – we’re camping it up to the max as we celebrate the wonderful diversity, strength and all-around fabulousness of our communities. Expect lots of rainbow paraphernalia and gay pride anthems. It’s the perfect warm-up to the parade so bring your whole float.

DATE: Wednesday 26 February 2020
TIME: 7pm-late
LOCATION: The Beresford, 354 Bourke St, Surry Hills
TICKETS: $20 all games, all night with 100% of proceeds supporting ACON




Bingay is gay bingo which means there’s classic disco tunes, weird rules and penalties, outrageous antics, hilarious repartee, deliciously lewd bingo calls, and prizes that range from the silly and camp to great theatre tickets and restaurant vouchers.

Bingay hostess Charisma Belle oversees the madcap proceedings and Bingay’s long time barrel babe Naomi Palmer spins the balls and sings up a storm.

Bingay takes over the upstairs bar of The Beresford Darlinghurst on the second Thursday of every month, with each monthly event having a fabulously flamboyant theme.

Bingay’s balls first dropped in 1999, making it one of Sydney’s longest running LGBTQ community events + it raises money for our HIV and LGBTQ health services.

So whether you’re a regular or a novice, or a local or visitor to Sydney, if you’re up for a wonderfully camp mid-week entertainment experience, then you can’t go wrong with Bingay.

For more information and bookings, visit the Bingay website here

Fighting For Our Lives – Book Launch & Community Reception

ACON, in partnership with The Bookshop Darlinghurst and NewSouth Publishing, invites you to celebrate the launch of Fighting For Our Lives on Tuesday 4 February at The Beresford in Surry Hills.

Fighting For Our Lives is a history of a community response to AIDS in Australia. Affected communities bravely took action to address the crisis head on, forming organisations such as ACON.

Fighting For Our Lives is an inspirational story, one which took place against a backdrop of harrowing illness and death, fear and anger, hate and discrimination. It captures the high stakes drama of the darkest years of the epidemic and the stories of the people at the very centre of a life-or-death struggle.

Fighting For Our Lives has been published to commemorate ACON’s 35th anniversary. Please join us for a reception to launch the book, which will feature an in-conversation with the author, Nick Cook. RSVP is essential.

Date: Tuesday 4 February
Time: 6pm – 9pm
Location: The Beresford, 354 Bourke St, Surry Hills
Cost: Free
RSVP here.

Silver Sessions: Workshops for Women Aged 55+

ACON and City of Sydney are presenting a series of free workshops open to all LGBTQ women who are 55 years or older who live, work or play within the City of Sydney Local Government Area. Each workshop has a different focus and will be a fun, social and engaging way to meet people and access information tailored to you and your local area.

Silver Sessions are a chance to come together, to share a meal and conversation. Each Silver Session dinner will host a few special guest speakers. We will talk about nutrition, financial planning, healthy ageing, and accessing services and supports. There will also be some activities to help everyone get to know each other, Q & A’s and giveaways.

The workshops will be held in Erskineville on:

  • Wednesday 22 January 2020
  • Wednesday 29 January 2020
  • Wednesday 5 February 2020
  • Wednesday 12 February 2020

Time: 6:00 – 8:30pm

Cost: Free

Registrations are now closed. Please sign up to the ACON newsletter for information about future workshops or connect with our LOVE Project.

SPARK Youth History Walk

Join us for SPARK’s Youth History Walk this Mardi Gras season!

Well before Oxford Street became the Gay Golden Mile, King’s Cross was the centre of Sydney’s gay nightlife. How did the community grow and why was there a later move to Oxford Street? Along the walk down King’s Cross and Oxford Street, we will be revisiting Sydney’s LGBTQ history with stories about important bars and venues that carved out spaces for members of the community in those early days, and the legacy of the first Mardi Gras in 1978.

Commentary will be by former gay activist and community historian, Robert French, who has been leading history tours for over 30 years, often in conjunction with the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. He has also published on homosexuality in Colonial and mid-20th Century Sydney.

The walk will take roughly 90 minutes. We encourage you to bring a water bottle and wear some sun screen on the day.

This event is for people of diverse sexualities and genders aged 26 years and under.

Date: Saturday 22 February
Time: 10:15am for a 10:30am start.
Location: We will start at El Alamein Fountain in King’s Cross and the route will take us down to Oxford Street.
Cost: Free


If you have any questions, please contact us at or (02) 9206 2077.

LOVE Club Gathering

The LOVE Club Gathering is a community activity for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) people who are 55 plus, their supporters and friends. The Gathering aims is to create a safe, respectful and welcoming space to share regular social time and activities.

All sexualities, gender identities, cultures and backgrounds are welcome. The LOVE Club is all about maintaining connections, making new ones and building ongoing support networks. Activities may include:

  • Sharing lived experiences and stories
  • Writing, arts or music
  • Supporting physical and emotional wellbeing
  • Field trips
  • Intergenerational conversations
  • Community speakers

This is a new community initiative and one that will evolve with time and community input. Led by community, for community! Donations welcome.

When: Every fourth Thursday of the month starting Thursday 23 January.

Time: 10.00am – 12.00pm

Location: ACON Ground floor Café 414 Elizabeth Street Surry Hills

For enquiries contact Russ Gluyas: T: (02) 9206 2017 | E:


ACON at Queer Screen Mardi Gras Film Festival 2020

ACON, NSW’s leading HIV and sexuality and gender diverse health organisation, is a long-standing partner of Queer Screen. In 2020, we are proud once again to present several key films at this year’s Mardi Gras Film Festival, running from February 13 to 27.

4pm, Sat 15 Feb – Event Cinemas, George Street
Presented by ACON
Book tickets here

5B is the story of Ward 5B: the forerunner for genuine human care for patients living with HIV in San Francisco. With a lack of knowledge about the virus at the time, doctors and nurses risked infection to provide this basic care. This heartfelt documentary brings a new, personal perspective to the early days of the HIV epidemic in the USA.

The Archivettes
5pm, Sun 16 Feb – Dendy Newtown, King Street

Presented by The LOVE Project
Book tickets here

This documentary is the story behind the Lesbian Herstory Archives, which tells the story of Deborah Edel and Joan Nestle who co-founded, in their own apartment, a library of artefacts that speak to the lesbian experience. The film helps to reinforce the importance of community and inspires viewers to participate and understand more about not only lesbian, but LGBTIQ+ history.

Song Lang
6:30pm, Mon 17 Feb – Event Cinemas, George Street
Presented by ACON: Here For Asian Gay Men
Book tickets here

Song Lang tells the story of an underworld debt collector and an opera singer whose paths cross in 1980s Saigon. The film is a gorgeous and dreamy melodrama of two men who unexpectedly find solace in each other’s company.

Straight Up
8.30pm, Thur 20 Feb – Dendy Newtown, King Street
Presented by ACON’s SPARK.
Book tickets here

What could possibly go wrong when despite all evidence to the contrary, a young gay man believes the answers to his loneliness could be found by going straight? This super-witty and urbane comedy, which is having its Australian premiere at the Mardi Gras Film Festival, is all about setting up camp within your own boundaries.

Changing the Game
1pm, Sun 23 Feb – Event Cinemas, George Street
Presented by ACON’s Pride in Sport
Book tickets here

Changing the Game is a timely and urgent documentary following three transgender teens fighting for their right to compete in the sports they love. Supported by their families, friends, and coaches, but facing discrimination from parents of other children and the media, the film ultimately becomes a striking portrait of three teens chasing their dreams in a world yet to catch up to them.

The Glass Room
7pm, Wed 26 Feb – Event Cinemas, George Street
Presented by ACON LGBTIQ Women’s Health Projects
Book tickets here

Shot on location at the historic Villa Tugendhat in the Czech Republic, this film captures the unwavering hope of love as seen through the eyes of Hana and Liesel who share an intense friendship which frequently verges on more.

The 27th Mardi Gras Film Festival, presented by Queer Screen, runs from 13-27 February. For the full program, visit the Queer Screen website here

Oxtravaganza 2020

Now in its 4th year, Oxtravaganza is an annual street festival that showcases the vibrancy and dynamism of Oxford Street and surrounds. Produced by the Darlinghurst Business Partnership, Oxtravaganza aims to highlight retailers, business and services in Sydney’s ‘Golden Mile’.

In 2020, Oxtravaganza is on:

Saturday 22 February 9am-late

​Over 100+ local businesses are taking part, offering exceptional retail promotions, live DJ sets, cabaret, outdoor music, plus food and drink packages.

Check out the ‘Glittering Mile Exhibition’ featuring exclusive historical posters and photos of Mardi Gras and the Oxford St scene from the 70s and 80s.

​This year, Oxtravaganza will raise funds for ACON. Oxtravaganza participants will be collecting charity funds on the day, at many venues, so please, help if you can!

Come along and join in the Oxtravaganza fun and help raise the glitter factor just that little bit higher!

For more information, go to the event website here.