In 2006, as Sasha Cohen glided down the ice rink in Turin, Italy, for the 2006 Winter Olympics, I decided it was as good a time as ever to come out to my mother. Since then, Olympic figure skating has continued to be a bastion of fantasy and pageantry, an escape from the grim grittiness of the hypermasculine sports world. And this year, with the buzz of I, Tonya; qualification of the first openly-gay American Olympic figure skater Adam Rippon; and the release of the obscenely hot U.S. Men's Bobsled team picture, Gay Olympia is reaching a fever pitch.
If you can’t afford to serve it in Pyeongchang, South Korea, this year, you can head to Bryant Park for some high-drama ice glamour, courtesy of Johnny Weir. The two-time Olympian, world bronze medalist and three-time U.S. national champion will perform on the ice and take pictures with fans on Thursday, January 11 at "Glitter, Glam and Gold with Johnny Weir," held at the midtown park's Winter Village from 7–9:30pm. If you're coming from work and don't have your blood-red tulle gown on hand, you can opt for free nail, face and braid makeovers, with designs “inspired by Johnny.” A DJ will be on deck to provide dance beats, and skate rentals and free giveaways will go on all night.
On January 26 from 6–6:45pm, Weir will perform, along with athletes from the Special Olympics, at the Bryant Park Opening Night Showcase.
Weir will be on NBC throughout the Olympics as an official skating analyst. Hopefully you can catch him in person. The good news is that he'll likely be around—every four years, for the next few centuries.
The Winter Olympics begin February 9.