Sporting events that need the Dinah touch

Recently I got to check out the Family Circle Cup in Charleston, S.C. To be honest, I’m not much of a tennis fan, but I’m also not one to turn down the chance to watch athletic girls running around in short skirts and grunting loudly after each and every swing. (Mama didn’t raise no fool, ladies!)

On the trip down from NYC, I started picturing a mini Dinah Shore weekend, complete with LGBT booths, celesbian athletes signing autographs, and sporty females decked out in a mix of Lacoste visors and wrist cuffs. After all, the 35-year-old cup is a women’s tennis tournament — you know, the sport of Billie Jean King and Martina Navratilova. So imagine my surprise horror when nary a gay woman was to be found (well, an out one anyway).

Now, I’m not naïve. I wasn’t expecting the level of Dinah debauchery you’d see in Palm Springs — South Carolina isn’t exactly known as a hotbed of (open) lesbian activity. But I thought there would be at least one special event planned by the local LGBT community or an after-hours party at a gay bar. Two days in, I would have been happy to just see a rainbow-colored anything.

And that’s when it hit me: What a missed opportunity this whole thing was, especially for all the East Coast and Southern ladies who couldn’t make it to California for Lesbian Spring Break. If ever there was a tournament that demanded a dyke presence, it’s a female-only tennis cup.

Of course, the two biggest roadblocks to Dinah-fying the cup are location (a red state) and sponsorship (a 75-year-old, traditional women’s service magazine). But all is not lost. While the Carolinas are very conservative, Charleston is actually a college town and a bit more evolved than other parts of the state.

On top of that, Family Circle Magazine is all about making money like any other business. And if the sexy Mucinex congestion-relief booth from this year’s event is any indication, they’re willing to rent space to anyone.

Bottom line: If we’re able to co-opt a golf classic named for a prim and proper singer/actress from a bygone era, we can definitely infiltrate a tennis cup hosted by an outdated magazine. And why stop there? I think we should dyke up as many hetero-centric sporting events as possible. Here are my top three spring sports:

The Kentucky Derby — This May 3rd race is a whole day devoted to horses, effeminate men (aka jockeys), and unusual headdress. Kind of sounds like a few Gay Pride parades, right?

Much like the Derby itself, lesbians also have a long and colorful history with hats, from the … let’s just say … interesting headwear choices of Guinevere Turner in Go Fish to Jill Bennett’s favorite skull-embroidered newsboy. Trust me: We’d fit right in at this already queer event.

The Indy 500 — Fast cars? Yawn! Women in uniforms? Yes, please! Thanks to Danica Patrick, I’m rethinking this whole racing-is-for-rednecks thing. At the recent Japan Indy 300, she became the first woman ever to win an Indy-style event, which puts her in a great position for Indianapolis on May 25.

Still not convinced? There’s a parade and plenty of beer, mullets and, yeah, cars (hello, mechanic dykes!). And did I mention women in uniforms?

International Pillow Fight Day — OK, before you object, I know this isn’t technically a sporting event. But if the picture below proves anything, it’s that lesbians love pillow fights.

Unfortunately, we’ve already missed our chance this year. The group smack-down took place in cities around the world on March 22. So pick out your favorite pillow, get to practicing, and meet me next year in Union Square.

What sporting events would you Dinah-fy?