Backstreet Boy To Ship Out For Lupus Benefit

Howie Dorough will cruise Caribbean with fans in December to benefit his Lupus Foundation.

After the Backstreet Boys finish cruising the country on their Black & Blue tour, singer Howie Dorough will cruise the Caribbean with fans to benefit his Dorough Lupus Foundation.

The second annual Lupus Cruise will depart Miami on December 15 and hit Grand Cayman Island and Ocho Rios, Jamaica, before arriving in Cozumel, Mexico, a week later.

Dorough and “friends” will deliver a private concert on the cruise, according to sponsors Dream Cruises & Tours.

The Backstreet Boy will also host a meet-and-greet and celebrity auction onboard Carnival Cruise Lines’ 102,000-ton Triumph.

Tickets for the cruise range from $799 to $2,350 and can be purchased at Dream Cruises & Tours’ Web site (www.cruisewithhowied.com). A $250 deposit is due by August 27.

Last year’s Lupus Cruise, which was organized in three months and filled only half the ship’s cabins, raised more than $36,000 for the Dorough Lupus Foundation, which Dorough formed in honor of his sister Caroline Dorough Cochran, who died from the disease in 1998.

About half of last year’s total was earned from the auction, while the cruise line donated $16,000 from their sales. A spokesperson for the Dorough Lupus Foundation stressed that tickets to the cruise/concert could only be purchased through Dream Cruises & Tours.

The Backstreet Boys, who rescheduled much of their summer tour so A.J. McLean could complete a stay in rehab for alcohol abuse and depression (see “Backstreet Boys Postpone Tour As A.J. McLean Seeks Treatment” ), resume their outing Friday in Milwaukee (see “Backstreet’s A.J. ‘Psyched’ To Return, Says Howie D” ). (Click for photos from the tour.)

When the tour resumes, Sisqó will take over opening-act duties from Shaggy, who left the tour due to scheduling conflicts, according to management for both acts. Sisqó is promoting his latest album, Return of Dragon (see “Sisqo: Beyond the Thong”).