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Annual Big Mike birthday celebration always gives back

Big Mike's 20th Anniversary fundraiser is on Jan 19.
Photo credit:
Big Mike -- Facebook

For 20 years, local LGBT activist Big Mike has been using his birthday to give back to others. This year is no different. 

Big Mike’s goal is to raise $20,000 that will be divided between Florence Elementary School PTA and the Matthew Shepard Foundation.

For those of you who don’t know Big Mike (and if you don’t you should), he has been a fixture in the Hillcrest area for 30 years.

"I am so blessed to live, work and play in a community that is full of love, kindness, and generosity," he says. "I moved to San Diego from San Antonio back in 1989 to be with my best friend Tino Graziano who was in the midst of dying of AIDS.

The love and care of our LGBT community and a few HIV/ AIDS organizations were here to help my best friend die in comfort with dignity, love, and compassion but most of all as a human being.

I lost Tino 3 months after I moved to San Diego. It was at that moment that I made a promise to myself to do whatever I could to give back to these organizations that were here for my best friend. Now I want to continue with your help all the different organizations to continue their amazing work for humanity."

Big Mike is known for many things; a bartender, a photographer, but others see him as a person who will gladly give you the shirt off his back, or his last dollar it if you need it.

Special entertainment for the night includes:

Regina Styles

Gigi Masters

The San Diego Gay Men's Chorus

You can donate in advance HERE

Big Mike's 20th Anniversary Birthday Fundraiser is on Saturday, January 19 from 5 pm to 8 pm at Rich's Nightclub.

Rich's is located at 1051 University Ave, San Diego, 92103.