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Sunday, February 26, 2006

Students receive 'hands on' sex toy demo

$1,000 raised to aid abortion costs for low-income women
By francesca heintz
January 30, 2006

Sex toys, condoms and The Rocky Horror Picture Show played prominent parts in Penn for Choice's second annual Sex Toy Box Social on Saturday.
The fundraiser brought in over $1,000 -- double the profit of last year's event -- to benefit the Greater Philadelphia Women's Medical Fund, which provides direct funding for low-income women and teens to offset abortion costs.

"It's a great way for people to know we're here," Penn for Choice President and College senior Leah Heifetz said of the sex-toy theme. "It's fun to do a huge blow-out thing."

The highlight of the event was a demonstration of sex toys run by The Mood, a sex-toy store located at 531 South St. The Mood sells sex toys, lingerie and how-to videos and also provides demonstrations of how to use each item.

The fundraiser attracted 150 people to Houston Hall and provided food, drinks and dancing for the party-goers. Students could also enter a raffle to win a so-called "Bucket O'Love" -- complete with candy G-string underwear, body butter and a Sex for Dummies book.

The attendees of the event supported the fundraiser for various reasons.

"It gives a dignity to sexuality," College freshman Allison Kupferberg said. "It not only helps to highlight the power of female sexuality, but also allows people not to fear an openness in female sexuality."

College junior Yifei Zhang found the theme entertaining despite some reservations.

"Politically, I'm not on this side of the spectrum, but I'm glad that college students can openly express themselves like this," he said.

The crowd became more animated as the toys were passed around for each person to inspect. The collection of vibrators, lubricants and novelty items such as a Kama Sutra Spinner Game made their way around the party and sparked a lively question-and-answer session with The Mood employee running the demonstration.

"I'm all for sex toys, but I feel a little dirty being here," College junior David Back said, flipping through The Mood's "Toygasm" catalogue. "I'm a little uncomfortable with other people seeing me here."

He later added, "I wish I'd run into Amy Gutmann."

The Sex Toy Box Social is Penn for Choice's largest fundraiser, and the organization plans to hold it again next year.


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