(Too bad you decided on bull***day; I have national ***holeday, we coulda made a deal, ork ork)
I'm in the "Projects with links not primary goal" category; I link out like a mofo to really high quality sites, and some of them link back. Including a bunch of .gov travel blogs and whatnot. But it doesn't matter if they link back, I link to them.
Someone even published something (unbeknownst to me ahead of time) to HuffPo with a link to one of my sites in it.
One of my clients actually created an industry watchdog "nonprofit" organization with memberships and standards, just to mainly get authority and links. Nobody'd done it yet for that niche, so it worked out great.