Hawaiian Getaway Winner Announced

Frederick with her ticket to paradise

The LGBT party at the Philadelphia Flower Show was a hit this year and we couldn’t have been happier about sponsoring it. Not only were some of our favorite bartenders on hand – John Russo of ICandy, Angela Bibey of Stir, Austin Algeo of Woody’s and Tony Nguyen of Voyeur – mixing up tropical-inspired cocktails to honor the show’s exotic Hawaiian theme, but QVC‘s own Phillip Watson was giving away books about his celebrity gardening projects. He even took some time to chat with fans and would-be gardeners with questions about what to plant this season.

The Sheraton Waikiki offers a luxurious ocean-front getaway (courtesy of Sheraton)

Guests also enjoyed a make-your-own lei station, Hawaiian-style foods and a personal tour of the Flower Show, which according to PHS President Drew Becher, combined some of the most creative exhibits ever this year with no shortage of participation from LGBT designers and florists, like Philly’s own Moda Botanica, which took home the Award of Distinction for Display Garden (Floral).

One of the guests at this year’s LGBT event also walked away with free ocean-front accommodations for three nights at the Sheraton Waikiki Resort in Hawaii. Winner Tanya Frederick says she’ll be planning her dream vacation to the Hawaiian island this year.

A special thank you to the Sheraton, attendees and everyone who made the event a success!

Meet Phillip Watson

Courtesy of Philip Watson

“I grew up in Mississippi,” says Phillip Watson, the out QVC personality who’s making an appearance on March 5 during a special LGBT Night Out sponsored by G Philly during the 2012 Philadelphia International Flower Show. Not only does Watson have a lot to say about the fine art of horticulture, a passion he’s enjoyed since he was just a kid toddling around the backyard with his aunts, but also his new book – Pleasure Gardens – a kind of garden-lover’s memoir interwoven with spectacular landscape designs.

Watson says he first formally studied horticulture as an undergrad in his home state. “Upon graduation, I tricked my father into sending me to grad school,” he says. “But I didn’t want to go to grad school. I took the money and moved to Fire Island.”

It was the mid-1970s – well before the AIDS crisis would forever change the popular gay resort town. The twenty-something Watson would take up landscaping duties for the legendary Belvedere Guest House. His family, all the while, thought he was attending the University of Georgia. The charade went on for many years.

“I stayed in Cherry Grove,” he remembers. “It was 1976 and full tilt on Fire Island.”

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