It allll began 12 years ago in the City of West Hollywood. Seven youth, who had nothing to do and didn't want to spend the Thanksgiving holiday alone, gathered to put together a small potluck to be around each other and celebrate Thanksgiving. 12 years later, the event is the largest, independently-produced social for youth during the week of Thanksgiving.

Scroll below to see how it all came together and how it evolved over the years!

The first ever "ThanXgiving Youth Social" was held back in 2003. The youth members of C.I.T.Y. felt the need to create an activity where youth could socialize in, be in a safe space, meet new friends, watch TV, and enjoy the Thanksgiving Holiday season. At the time, the Social was nothing like what it is today; there were no performances, no sponsors, no event web site, and the food was not catered. The event was originally a potluck and was held at The Spot (in West Hollywood). Both LGBTQ youth and their allies showed up and got to socialize at this activity. But there was still more to come in the years ahead...
C.I.T.Y. knew that November was coming up and so was Thanksgiving. Remembering the previous year's event, the youth wanted to once again host a social for youth...but this time their imagination took off! The event was held on Sunday, November 21st, 2004 at Plummer Park (in the City of West Hollywood) and was sponsored by Wells Fargo. The event featured a live youth DJ, free food, all sorts of giveaways, youth resources, and youth from all over Southern California.
2005 saw the third annual ThanXgiving Youth Social. The event was once again sponsored by Wells Fargo and provided a great time for all who attended. The event was held at the Metropolitan Community Church, Los Angeles (MCCLA) on November 17th and had over 75 youth in attendance...and for the first time we even had some parents attend!

Prior to the event, a "mystery guest" was announced on the C.I.T.Y. x1 web site. As the event began, the guest was revealed, and it was none other than the then Mayor of the City of West Hollywood, Abbe Land. Mayor Land welcomed the youth of the community and mentioned how proud she was of everyone involved with the event and everyone who attended. Also in attendance were Reverend Neil Thomas (of MCC/LA), Sue Sexton (Lesbian Gay Advisory Board Member), and the MCCLA Staff.
The 4th annual ThanXgiving Youth Social returned to MCCLA for the 2nd-straight year. Over 100 youth from all over the area attended and were treated to free food, performances, and community resources. Councilmember Abbe Land attended her second ThanXgiving Youth event and dropped by to say Hello. Other guests included community leaders, the Trevor Project, members of the TRIBLE LA Youth Group, and several GSA (Gay Straight Alliance) Clubs.
In 2007 we returned to Plummer Park for the first time in three years for our annual event. The house was packed from start to finish and although doors opened at 6:00pm, we had over 100 youth lining up outside of the park as early as 5:00pm. Several volunteers helped out at the event, which saw over 200 youth in attendance. Event attractions included live performances, giveaways, and community resources.
Arguably the "biggest" holiday event so far, the 2008 edition of this annual event had its biggest changes and has set the standard for what today's event has become. This was also a year of 'firsts'; the first time the event was held at West Hollywood Park Auditorium, the first time the event had a live DJ since 2004, and the first time we ever staged a live laser show. This was also the first time that the event had a theme, as it was titled "CYBER TURKEY". The event had a cyber-theme in its flyer, it's event web site, and its decorations. 200 youth were in attendance for giveaways, a dance, and a free turkey dinner. 2008's "CYBER TURKEY" was certainly a giant leap from the "tiny" event it originated from back in 2003.
The 7th annual event was titled "The BIG Thanksgiving BAIL OUT" and made its return back to Plummer Park. A very colorful flyer got the word out all over Southern California and youth showed up in big numbers once again. For the second year, the event featured a live DJ and a live laser show. Youth in attendance also enjoyed a free traditional Thanksgiving dinner, raffle prizes, and a lucky winner even walked away with a brand new "DJ HERO" prize.
"The Social Kickback" hosted over 250 youth from all over Southern California. The 8th annual event was highlighted by 2 live performances from Drew Mason, a special visit from Councilmembers Abbe Land & Lindsey Horvath, as well as a dance and laser show. All youth in attendance were treated to a complete Thanksgiving-style dinner and several giveaways as well. We were also joined by several members of the Los Angeles Fire Department, who were nice enough to join us throughout the evening by volunteering and helping serve food. To relive this event, visit our Multimedia Page and access over 150 photos from the evening.
The 9th annual event was held in Plummer Park on Sunday, November 19th, 2011. Titled, "The BIG Feast", the event once again featured its popular Thanksgiving-dinner and was available at no cost. DJ's from some of Southern California's top night clubs were in attendance to provide the soundtrack for a memorable night. And for the fourth year, we also staged another laser show for all of our youth attendees. Special guests included West Hollywood City Councilmember John Hielman, the USC Trojans, the L.A. Fire Department, and several community leaders.
The landmark 10th-anniversary of "The Big Feast" drew over 200 people to a very special banquet hall in Hollywood. The event was so big and caught the eye of many, that not only did it make frontpage news in the Beverly Press, but Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti attended as well.
2013 Recap coming soon!
2014 Recap coming soon!
The small holiday potluck we created back in November of 2003 now heads into its 13th-straight year and we are amazed at how the event has grown and how many individuals in the community have come to be a part of it. This year's event is scheduled for November 22nd and this annual extravaganza will once again affect a lot of young lives and create community.

What will happen? Who will show up? What surprises does C.I.T.Y. x1 have in store for everyone!? There's only one way to find out...and that's to be there in person on the Sunday nite, November 22nd. We'll see you there!

The BIG Feast is a free community event for LGBTQ youth and allies, ages 14-24. This is an alcohol-tobacco-free event.

Web Site & Graphic Design by Carlos Sosa