30 years of the HOOKERS BALL

It’s one of the wildest, most an­tic­i­pated nights of the year in Dar­win. An event which sends lin­gerie sales through the roof. At­ten­dees past and present re­mem­ber three decades of dev­il­ish, de­bauch­er­ous fun. By TA­MARA HOWIE


THE Hookers Ball had a 30th birth­day bash last Sun­day to cele- brate 30 years of sauci­ness, and it rus­tled up a lot of mem­o­ries for those folk who were there at the be­gin­ning. In its first year the event was in- itially tar­geted at the LBGTI com­mu­nity, but it didn’t take long be­fore it be­came one of the big­gest nights out for adults of all sex­u­al­i­ties in Dar- win. The Hook- ers Ball has bounced from venue to venue, start- ing at Dar­bys be- fore the de­bauch­ery moved on to the Saloon Bar, Vic Ho­tel, Dis­cov­ery, Opium and Mon­soons in the fol­low­ing years. One long-term lo­cal lass said the first few years were just a fun op­por­tu­nity to have a few beers at the pub in your undies. “When it first came out it was ‘hookers ball — oh my god’, it was the big risqué thing to do in the ’80s and ’90s be­cause you could put your undies and bra on and go out to the pub,” she said. “Blokes had an ex­cuse to wear their miss- us’ lin­gerie and get away with it.” But it didn’t take long for the naughty event to turn filthy. “They were an­i­mals and there were no lim­its to how much fun you could have,” the lo­cal lass said. “You could do what­ever you wanted — drink as much piss as you could, do as many drugs as you wanted, and have as much sex as you liked.”

Greg Hol­brook took over the of place,” he said. event in its sec­ond year and said it “So the next year we went and I was al­ways in­tended as a light- dressed up, or down, wear­ing a hearted theme night, but it still lame home­made pe­nis that we man­aged to ruf­fle a few feath­ers. made from a kid’s foam base­ball

“It was al­ways run as just a fun bat and ball. night with a naughty theme — it “Af­ter a few drinks/some Dutch was never as a sex night, so to courage I re­leased me se­cret weapon speak,” he said. — what peo­ple did not know

“Back in the early days one of un­til then was what was lurk­ing the things that seemed to oc­cur within. each year was a group of Chris­tians “We had in­serted a tube of con­densed say­ing ‘the devil’s in­side’. milk in the end of my weapon That hap­pened for quite a few and, when the time came, I years.” was run­ning around spurt­ing over

The an­nual event has tra­di­tion- who­ever took my fancy un­til I was ally been held on the first Sun­day com­pletely ‘spent’. of De­cem­ber as a way for rev­ellers “I was lucky not to get ar­rested. to blow off steam be­fore the My friend was lick­ing the white Christ­mas fes­tiv­i­ties kicked in. sticky sub­stance off of girls here

A high­light and ma­jor draw­card and there. each year is the best dressed com­pe­ti­tion. “Need­less to say there were a Mr Hol­brook said it al- few an­gry jeal­ous boyfriends ways fell on the fel­las to get around, but the rest of us had an cre­ative. ab­so­lute ball.”

“The women al­ways dressed up De­spite its name, the Hookers in lin­gerie and, to their credit, they Ball doesn’t al­ways at­tract a large did it very well, but the more cre- crowd of sex work­ers. ative out­fits were gen­er­ally left to Speak­ing with the NT News a the guys,” he said. few years ago sex worker Piper ex­plained

“The best cos­tume that stands why. out to me the most were some “It’s one of our busiest nights, guys who came along ev­ery year so you’re bet­ter off work­ing,” she like B1 and B2 from Ba­nanas in Py- said. “If you go to one of those ja­mas, but in­stead were P1 and P2 events, the male to fe­male ra­tio is as penises — they looked fan­tas- crazy so the (men) are all ex­cited, tic.” but there are no girls there. What

Each year the cover charge for are they go­ing to do? They’re en­try is deter­mined by pa­trons go­ing to call hookers. dress­ing to theme and how much “I’ve joked about the Hookers they’re will­ing to dress down. Ball with girls be­fore and how you

Lama from Rapid Creek re- get a dis­count if you dress up. The mem­bered go­ing to his first Hook- funny thing is, if I went dressed in ers Ball in 1991, but said he didn’t what I nor­mally wear, I prob­a­bly have the guts to dress up. wouldn’t get the dis­count.”

“I was em­bar­rassed as ev­ery­one The an­nual event will con­tinue was dressed up and I felt out this De­cem­ber at Mon­soons.

Becky Jones and Tanya Aitken try out their new lin­gerie for a 1990s Hookers Ball at the Big Coun­try Saloon

Jeremy Al­lan at a 1990s Hookers Ball

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