GTLA TENNIS IS TOPS!
BRITTNEY GRINER BATTLES BULLYING
GAY POLO CELEBRATES ITS 5TH PING PONG GOES PINK
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MAY 2014 Volume 8, Issue 5
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14 BRITTNEY GRINER—
LEADING WITH PRIDE
TENNIS WITHOUT PREJUDICE IT’S YOUR GAME!
16 PING PONG IS PINK! KICK–OFF 10 LEFT FIELD DEPARTMENTS 32 SPORTS
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Gay Polo League Celebrates its Fifth Annual International Tournament
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Check out these additional Compete Online stories at competenetwork.com Paralympics and the Growing Field of Adaptive Sports What the You Can Play Project Means to Me Saguaro Cup Finals Phoenix Pride Parade and Festival & Phoenix Frontrunners Pride Run
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D.A.P. treats and supports the whole person I was a kid from Arkansas, living the “Broadway Baby” dream as a dancer in New York City, when I was diagnosed with HIV. After moving to California and finding my T cells had dropped to a grand total of three, yoga and meditation became a big part of my healing. That’s why I love some of the alternatives to western medicine that D.A.P. offers and why I’ve also been a yoga teacher there for years.
This and more...all under one roof Thanks to your generous support, Desert AIDS Project has been saving lives for 30 years. Please continue to help by donating at desertAIDSproject.org, joining one of our annual giving programs, or by saving the date for one of our upcoming fundraising events. Dining Out for Life | April 24, 2014 Queen of the Desert | May 28, 2014 Summer Mixer & Dance Party | July 24, 2014 Desert AIDS Walk | October 18, 2014 Dancing With The Desert Stars | November 15, 2014 World AIDS Day | December 1, 2014
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o you love sports? Do you bleed the colors of your favorite team? Do you love the camaraderie that playing your favorite sport nurtures? Good! That means that Compete is for YOU! We are thrilled to see recent high profile athletes like Robbie Rogers, Fallon Fox, Jason Collins, Michael Sam, Derrick Gordon and others change the face of sports because of their courage to come out. By being open members of the LGBT community, their courage ensures that more athletes will join them. But just as important as the actions of college and professional athletes are the weekend warriors who make a stand and play as openly gay athletes in both individual and team sports. It might be the proud freestyler competing at the local swim meet, the tennis ace showing off at Gay Games 9 or even the tough rugger gearing up for the Bingham Cup. While these athletes may not seem important enough to make the pages of Sports Illustrated, they certainly may make the pages of Compete. Our mission really is about sports diversity so we honor all members of the sporting community—from everyday athletes to professionals. So if you are lucky enough to meet any of the early pioneers who started the ball rolling for gay athletes to play openly or if you meet some of the more current athletes, please thank them for all they have done to move the sporting world forward. Their courage has opened the closet door of the sports world, making it a place of growing equality, diversity and inclusion. But just as important, if you meet a gay or allied athlete or any member of your local sports community, be sure to thank them, too. Let them know that what they do is very important for all of us who love sports. Sport On,
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f you’re into sports with plenty of whack potential with a racquet, paddle or a mallet, then you’re in luck. We’re got some great stories this issue that feature tennis, table tennis and equestrian polo. All three sports are international favorites and even though they don’t all share the same level of appeal in the U.S. at the current moment, each sport has avid supporters looking to build that appeal. I’ve always been impressed by the cooperative, supportive partnership between the Gay and Lesbian Tennis Alliance (GLTA) and the United States Tennis Association (USTA). Their combined efforts to promote diversity and inclusion in the sport they love is a great model for other sports to follow. And from a well-established gay sports organization like the GLTA we also cover a new group – table tennis (probably better known as ping pong) players ready to launch a new organization, going pink … Pink Pong that is, in the process. The story includes an interesting cultural aspect that we don’t often think about when playing our favorite sport. But what about the tailgates? There’s gay equestrian polo or, to quote a story in Compete in 2012, it’s “Queens in the Sport of Kings.” The Gay Polo League just celebrated their 5th Annual International Tournament with food, fun and their over-the-top tailgate celebrations. Who else, I ask you, could combine themes from the Arabian Nights, NASCAR and Alice in Wonderland all in the same sporting event! The Paralympic Games are now over in Sochi, officially ending the Winter Games for 2014. They’ve never created the same level of interest in the viewing public as the Olympics in spite of the fact that the U.S. Ice Sled Hockey team captured gold for the second Paralympics in a row. But what continues to grow is the field of adaptive sports. A story on the impressive Virginia G. Piper Sports and Fitness Center for Persons with Disabilities (better known as SpoFit) facility in Phoenix is just one of the additional great stories to be found on Compete Online. Enjoy! Keep Smiling,
Connie Wardman, Editor-in-Chief firstname.lastname@example.org
The 14th Annual Chelsea Challenge
ot only do we love to share information on sporting events promoting sports diversity, we especially love it when one of our former Athletes of the Year is honored as part of the event. That’s the case with the upcoming Chelsea Challenge on May 23. Now in its 14th year, this is an adult LGBT and LGBT-friendly ice hockey tournament hosted by the New York City Gay Hockey Association (NYCGHA). Players from everywhere are welcomed and this usually includes players from across the U.S. and Canada as well as from Europe. This year’s premiere sponsor, Barefoot Wine is honoring Jeff Kagan as one of their Soles of the Year for his involvement in co-founding the NYCGHA. According to their website, “Jeff Kagan first fell in love with ice hockey at 24. At the time he was in the closet, but after discovering the Toronto Gay Hockey Association, he and his teammate, Jeff Minck, were inspired to bring that same open-mindedness to New York rinks. To help bring an end to local stereotypes in their city, they co-founded the NYC Gay Hockey Association in 1999.” We couldn’t be more proud of Jeff who is widely involved in the LGBT sports community, both as an athlete and as co-founder of the NYC Gay Basketball League in addition to the NYCGHA. He is also a co-founder of Out of Bounds NYC, an umbrella organization which supports all LGBT sports and recreation groups in the greater New York City area.
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A contributing writer to Compete, StandUp, Next and Go NYC Magazines, Jeff also created “Out in the Locker Room” blog. And in 2008, he was honored as the very first “Athlete of the Year” (AOTY) by Compete Magazine (under its original title of Sports Out Loud Magazine) for his many contributions to the LGBT sports community. With seven teams and more than 100 players, the NYCGHA is readying itself for the Chelsea Challenge that offers the gay community a chance to be a part of a sport that has traditionally not been as open and accepting as some other sports. Starting on Friday the 23rd with an evening welcome party, festivities will end on Monday the 26th with finals and a champagne brunch. The tournament is being held at Sky Rink at Chelsea Piers, a 30-acre waterfront sports village located along Manhattan’s Hudson River. For more information, go to their new website at www.nycgha.org. Jeff Kagan
THUMBS UP THUMBS UP TO
MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER (MLS) … for agreeing to new measures to protect gay players from discrimination and harassment, following similar moves by MLB and the NFL. In May Robbie Rogers became the first openly gay male athlete to play in MLS that has 600 players and 19 teams, including three in Canada.
THUMBS DOWN THUMBS UP TO DERRICK GORDON
… the sophomore UMass shooting guard (who recently came out) for his recent Instagram post – “This is the happiest I have ever been in my 22 Years of living...No more HIDING!!!...Just want to live.” He credits Jason Collins’ continued play in the NBA for the courage to come out.
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BRITTNEY GRINER LEADING THE WAY WITH PRIDE BY BRIAN PATRICK
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The 34th Annual Phoenix Pride Festival kicked off a powerful and fun-filled two-day celebration with Brittney Griner (also known as BG or Big Girl) of the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury serving as the Celebrity Grand Marshal. This coincides with the release of her biography, “In My Skin: My Life On and Off the Basketball Court.” Her dominance on the basketball court has given Griner celebrity figure status, both at Baylor, a conservative Baptist school that required her to be secretive about her sexual identify, and now with the Mercury where she started her professional career as an openly gay player. But it’s clear that off the court, she is serious about helping young people who are bullied find help learning how to deal with the negativity. Sharing how she was bullied, she says that “I’ll come out over and over again if it’s a positive thing for gay kids who are struggling.” So while she led the Pride Parade in Phoenix this year, she’s also leading the way for kids who are bullied to get help. Griner is in the vanguard of professional athletes, both gay and straight, who are using their voices and celebrity status to represent the untold number of LGBT youth struggling with their own sexual identity, giving them the courage to come out and live an authentic life. For her LGBT activism that includes not only her book but also being the No. 1 pick in the
2013 WNBA draft, her Nike endorsement and the courage to chart her own style with everything from clothes, to tattoos, to her pet snake, Griner was ranked No. 31 in Out Magazine’s Power 50 list. Included in that list was Michael Sam, making them the first two professional athletes to make this list. While statistics vary slightly, approximately 77 percent of school children are bullied in one form or another. And from her days as a skateboarder to her first game of basketball in ninth grade, Griner knows all too well what that feels like to be bullied. In high school she already stood 6 foot-8, towering far above her classmates and teachers. While her size is now an advantage as a great basketball player (as can be seen at the right in the 2013 introductory ticket package the Mercury sent out), in her high school years it made her feel like a lonely only. Now spearheading a personal empowerment app – the BG:BU App Project, Griner is now asking for people to support this project on IndieGoGo. Designed for kids who are bullied as well as their parents and allies, it becomes a mobile lifeline where they can discuss their issues, get advice, ask questions, find resources and gain overall support and encouragement. Saying that if, at 16 she could have talked with someone who had lived through the same struggles she was going through, it would have taken away the feeling of isolation and given
her someone to whom she could relate. Having a connection to someone who had made it through these struggles successfully, she said “would have changed my life.” Since being the No. 1 draft pick for the WNBA in 2013, Griner has been living in a whirlwind. After last year’s season ended, she went to China to play for the Zhejiang Golden Bulls of the Women’s Chinese Basketball Association (WCBA) in Hangzhou province. Even though she and the other WNBA players miss out on time to rest, let injuries heal and get ready for the coming season, the pay in the WNBA is so meager that many must play almost yearround to afford to live. Griner’s contract
with the Golden Bulls was approximately $600,000 for a four-month season. After returning to the U.S. and finishing her memoir and its accompanying book tour, Griner hit the court for training camp with the Mercury that started April 27. With the 18th season tip off for the Mercury scheduled for May 17, joining Griner and Diana Taurasi, the two highest profile athletes in the WNBA, and other returning Mercury team members will be three new players added in the 2014 draft: Oklahoma State point guard Tiffany Bias (27th overall, second round), Penn State shooting guard Maggie Lucas (21st overall, second round), and Australian forward Stephanie Talbot (33rd overall, third round).
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BY TY NOLAN
ENNIS ISN’T ONLY PLAYED ON A COURT— table tennis, better known to many as ping pong, has always been popular around the world. Many Americans don’t know that during the Nixon presidency “ping pong diplomacy” helped open China to the United States, ushering in Nixon’s first visit there. There are nearly as many ping pong players in China as there are Americans. Wolfgang Busch (“Wolf” to his friends) is an amazing man with a remarkable history. Originally from Germany, he has been involved in a wide-range of gay activist activities. For over a decade he’s been in the forefront of promoting table tennis as a venue for the LGBT community. I had the chance to ask Wolf about his experiences with “Pink Pong.” Compete: Can you tell me how Pink Pong started?
Wolfgang Busch: It all started in 2001 with my friend from Brazil, Paulo Freitas. One day we talked about our youth and learned that we both liked table tennis. I hadn’t played in over 20 years but we went to downtown Brooklyn and started playing once a week. Before I knew it we had four-to-six players every week. Now we have almost 100 members and we are the only gay table tennis group in the United States. In 2014 we are celebrating our 12th anniversary. In 2004 we talked about a name for the group and came up with Ping Pong NY. Because it wasn’t gay
enough, in 2010 we changed it to Pink Pong NY and I created the Pink Pong Foundation website to provide a place where LGBT players could meet and network and where we could also fight homophobia through sports. Since 2010 Pink Pong NY has enjoyed much table tennis success. One reason is our outrageous table tennis costume and another is the first table tennis song called “PINK PONG,” written and produced by Darryl Hell. We used the sound of the ping pong ball and the paddles as part of the beat. Additionally, recognition for my producing and directing LGBT historic art films has provided momentum to organize players worldwide and start a table tennis movement. Our goal is to produce this September the first annual international LGBT Table Tennis Tournament in New York City for players of all levels. In 2010 we celebrated our first Pink Pong NY awards dinner to honor the “Most Improved Player of the Year” as well as members who donated time and money to show our appreciation. To further community inclusion we also honored our mascots, supporters of the players who hang out with us and watch us play. Now I play for the love of playing the game and for physical therapy. Because of a back injury, I used to go to physical therapy prescribed by my doctor and many times would still leave with back pain. One day I left with back pain but went to play table tennis. After playing for two hours I was pain free and felt great the next day. Now when I have back pain I can’t wait to play table tennis—it always works. (Continued on page 28)
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by Connie Wardman
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MOST SPORTS HAVE NATIONAL OR INTERNATIONAL
associations, alliances or federations that provide a variety of services for their members. And with the changing face of sports diversity, many of the major sports also have separate LGBT associations that offer gay and gay-friendly competition. But it’s not often you find a traditional and an LGBT group in a single sport that work well together to actively support all athletes who love that particular sport. Tennis, however, is a wonderful model of inclusion and diversity. Three years ago I was fortunate enough to be part of a joint planning session held by the United States Tennis Association (USTA) and the Gay and Lesbian Tennis Alliance (GLTA). I came away truly impressed by their love of tennis and their joint commitment to the future of the game. Sexual orientation made no difference to either group— what counted was how to make the game more accessible and welcoming to people everywhere. That commitment is reflected in the GLTA tag line on their website that proudly proclaims, “Tennis Without Prejudice: It’s Your Game!” And that is echoed in their statement on diversity and inclusion: “Everybody is truly welcome to play with us providing they believe in diversity and the spirit of fair play in sport. … We like to think of our tournaments as social sporting events. … The emphasis is on friendly but competitive tennis and FUN.” It’s always good to talk directly to the people involved, though, to get a feel for the members and leaders behind the organization. I recently had the opportunity to chat with Dan Merrithew, commissioner and secretary of the GLTA, and ask him some questions about the current impact the organization is having on sports diversity and inclusion.
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Compete: Can you please give me a little background on how the GLTA got started in the U.S. and then how and when it made the leap to an international organization? Dan Merrithew: The GLTA was officially incorporated on July 4, 1991. However, our first GLTA clubs were formed in the late 1970s and early 1980s—our Dallas, Houston, San Francisco and Los Angeles clubs organized the very first GLTA clubs and tournaments and we are fast approaching 70 clubs/tournaments around the globe. Our leap as an international organization occurred shortly after the 1998 Gay Games in Amsterdam. A good working partnership between the straight and gay levels of a sport is very unusual. How did the GLTA partnership (is this the correct word to use?) with the USTA come about? Yes, we consider our relationship with the USTA as a partnership. Both organizations have the same goal of promoting and developing tennis. Our focus is the LGBT community but a partnership with the national governing body for tennis in the U.S. speaks volumes about the commitment from both organizations to ensure that tennis players feel safe, welcome and included in the sport they love regardless of their sexual orientation. In 2010 the GLTA board members met with the director of diversity and community development for the USTA Intermountain Region during one of our board meetings in Denver. Since that meeting our partnership has strengthened and grown to where we are today. How do the two organizations work together to promote diversity in the sport of tennis? The leadership of the GLTA and the USTA both have a diverse group of committed individuals who sincerely believe that diversity initiatives are important. We both promote understanding and acceptance based on our common realization that diversity among tennis players is a strength that
empowers all of our members. We have regular face-to-face meetings and conference calls, and we continue to fine tune our previously developed “toolbox” to ensure that we continue to promote diversity in sport. How many GLTA chapters do you have internationally and how many members? We have close to 70 clubs on five continents and hope to add South America later this year. We have about 10,000 players who participate in our tournaments. But more importantly, we have close to 100,000 members (if not more) who play in their local recreational leagues/clubs on a daily basis. In our increasingly mobile society, can a person who travels play in any other locale that has a chapter? And if they can, how do they find the local contact to make arrangements to play? Yes, many of our members play all over the world, and all of our clubs and tournaments are open to anyone who wants to play. If a player is on a business or pleasure trip and wants to play tennis, he or she can visit www.glta.net and click on the “contact” button; we will put them in touch with a local club leader in that community. What are the principle duties for a chapter and how are chapter members assisted by the international organization? Is it only help with tournament planning you provide or does it also include help with local, regional or national fundraising or other activities? Each GLTA Chapter must apply for sanctioning on an annual basis and there are a series of requirements to maintain their sanctioning. But the primary requirement is that each chapter must be committed to promoting and developing tennis in their community and maintaining a policy of inclusion and non-discrimination. (Continued on page 22)
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(Continued from page 20) Each GLTA club must be created as a non-profit organization and the GLTA board of directors negotiates global partnerships that our local clubs/ members can use for their local club/tournament activities. Also, the GLTA provides ongoing software support via our own tournament software provider (glta.tournamentsoftware.com) with planning, organizational guidance and fundraising support for new and existing chapters. We maintain our own ranking database and this is used by each of our sanctioned chapters. Additionally, the GLTA promotes each of our clubs via our website, tournament software, social media pages and the GLTA app. You hold an impressive amount of tournaments around the world. Are tournaments the primary focus of the GLTA? Do you also include social events in your international calendar or do you leave that to individual chapters? We do offer many tournament choices around the globe and this unites our players from all over the world. However, our local club activities far outnumber our tournaments and these recreational activities are offered on a daily basis throughout each of our local GLTA chapters. Can anyone join the GLTA? Are there membership fees; is there a required level of playing proficiency to join? If someone wants to join the GLTA, where do they start? The GLTA does not charge a membership fee; a player automatically becomes a “member” after he or she plays in one of our tournaments. However, some of our local chapters do charge a membership fee to join—that varies by the club. We welcome players from every skill level. And we encourage players who have never picked up a racquet to
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contact us and we will help them find a USTA event that is structured for new players. If anyone is interested in learning more about the GLTA, please send me an email at email@example.com. On a personal level, Dan, how did you first get involved with the GLTA? I know you have lots of responsibility and travel with the job of GLTA commissioner. How do you manage it all and what is it that keeps you involved? I have always loved tennis but never really felt accepted in sports. And I certainly didn’t feel that I could be myself when I would play with straight groups. In 1999 I found the GLTA on the web and went to a Wednesday night recreational play for the Orlando group. I was hooked and now I play between 15-20 tournaments a year. I am one of the longest serving directors in the GLTA—10 years as the Orlando director, eight years serving on the GLTA board and I just started my fifth term as commissioner. I am truly blessed with lifelong friendships because of the GLTA. I have traveled the world and always hear stories of how the GLTA has changed lives. Our GLTA chapters have donated well over a million dollars to local charities through their club events. It is the number of people and communities we’ve touched that keeps me actively involved in this wonderful organization. And on a personal note, I want to thank Dan and all the leaders and members of the GLTA and the USTA and congratulate them for making the sport of tennis more important than someone’s sexual orientation! They have managed to put personal agendas and egos aside to focus on the importance of the sport they all love. In the process they have created a powerful model of sports diversity that not only sounds good on paper it also works well in daily application.
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CARLOS SALAZAR AGE: 27 HOMETOWN: Guadalajara, Mexico CURRENT RESIDENCE: Tulsa, Oklahoma SPORT: Tennis RELATIONSHIP STATUS: Single FAVORITE ATHLETE: Rafael Nadal INTERESTS: Yoga, Juicing, Zumba LIKES: Tennis, friends, dancing DISLIKES: Social dating apps BEST PHYSICAL FEATURE: Smile; eyes WHY YOU LOVE SPORTS AND WHAT THE GAY & LESBIAN TENNIS ALLIANCE (GLTA) MEAN TO YOU: I have always loved tennis – I grew up playing tennis and can’t imagine life without it. I enjoy being a GLTA member because it makes me realize it is ok to be gay and an athlete at the same time, and it allows me to spend time with other people from around the world with similar interests.
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What’s your greatest challenge in recruiting players? This is really a two-part question and has to do with our sexuality and legal status. North Americans, Europeans and Latin Americans are generally more comfortable being out. Asian countries like China, where being gay is illegal and families will dishonor their children when they find out one is gay, is much more difficult to deal with. Finding gay Chinese players was a huge challenge. It took three years to find them. One day I heard about a gay sauna in Queens with a ping pong table. I went there but nobody was playing. I went back on a Sunday and met Michael from China. He asked me to play with him and seeing my potential and interest in the game, we became friends very quickly. The new challenge was getting them from playing at the gay sauna to playing at a table tennis club since the room at the sauna was very small and the actual table was on top of a billiard table – not an ideal place to play. It took me one year to get Michael and Leon to come out of the sauna and play at the club with me. Now that I socialized with them outside the sauna, I found myself in an environment where saying the word “gay” in public made the Chinese players very uncomfortable. I felt like I was going back in time 40 years. I experienced very intense moments and it still scares the heck out of them when I say gay in public. It reminds me how lucky I am to have been able to empower myself from this guilt of family shame and rejection. Homophobia is huge within the table tennis community overall because the sport is so dominated by Chinese players. The vibes are very strong at straight table tennis clubs when the subject comes up. Because in China gay is illegal, it still affects Chinese living in the U.S. Many are married with children and have to live a double
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life. It is deeply rooted and will take years to see a little change. Sometimes they open up to me when we have conversations about gay life and sports. I can see how their eyes light up. Many of them have nobody who talks to them like I do and they tell me that they really appreciate it. Is there a “typical” table tennis player? There is no out professional table tennis player and there is no “typical” anything because there is no recorded history. Education and communication are important to reach more players so we can learn more about each other. We want to continue the development and growth of table tennis in the U.S. and worldwide so we can leave behind a table tennis legacy for future generations. Most of our players are over 40 and we share the same story. We all played as teenagers then stopped playing as adults. Now older, we realize we need some exercise in our lives again. There is nothing better than picking up table tennis. They call it food for the brain because of the mental/ physical intense coordination. And the reflexes developed by playing are helpful in everyday life. Is there something else you’d like to share with our readers about your group and the sport of table tennis? We would like to encourage everybody to play table tennis, especially the younger members from our community to bridge the generation gap. Table tennis is for people of all ages at all levels of play. It is great for body, mind and soul—once bitten by the table tennis bug, there is no turning back. Pink Pong NY is a social group and table tennis players coming to New York to visit or on business now have a gay place to play. To listen to the “PINK PONG” song, visit the organization’s website at PinkPongFoundation. org and follow the group on Facebook.
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5TH ANNUAL INTERNATIONAL GAY POLO LEAGUE TOURNAMENT By Harry Andrew COMPETE MAGAZINE’S APRIL 2012 ISSUE
featured a story by author James Tuttle, “The Gay Polo League: Queens in the Sport of Kings,” that recounted the Gay Polo League’s (GPL) founding in 2006 by Los Angeles executive Chip McKenney. Although he had experience in show jumping, McKenney was looking for an equestrian-centered team sport where he could connect with other members of the gay community. As GPL’s executive director, McKenney is passionate about polo and just as passionate about changing people’s perceptions of the LGBT community and its athletes. When he started the GPL, McKenney said “I thought I was the only gay person in polo!” But in our 2012 story, as more people heard about the organization, polo players and aficionados joined from at least seven different countries, including Argentina, Australia, Canada, China, South Africa and Sweden. Now fast-forward to 2014 and the GPL has just celebrated the fifth anniversary of its International Gay Polo Week, considered the crown jewel of Wellington, Florida’s winter equestrian and social season. Held at the Grand Champions Polo Club in Wellington, thanks to the club’s working with PoloNow Network, an independent media company, for the first time the tournament was livestreamed and is also airing around the-clock for those who couldn’t attend or those who want to relive the fun and excitement. The inaugural Polotini Party started the weekend, followed on Saturday by the big tournament that has continued to grow. This year’s tournament fielded five teams that welcomed new and returning players from China, France, Argentina and Canada. For the third consecutive year, the team from Cedar Crest Stables won the Founders Cup and McKenney was named tournament MVP.
| COMPETE | May 2014
Talbot Logan on the Wellington Preservation Coalition Team and Christine Vermes on the Cedar Crest Stables Team battle down the line in the GPL Tournament. Photo by Meg McGuire, courtesy of Phelps Media Group.
Gina Padilla and Juan Bollini of Phelps Media Group drive downfield with Rafik Boughadou and Jean-Marc Herrouin of RBC Wealth Management in hot pursuit. Photo by Scott Fisher.
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Alice In Wonderland Costume Celebration. Photo by Meg McGuire, courtesy of Phelps Media Group. But hard-charging polo isn’t the only attraction. GPL’s over-the-top-themed tailgate celebrations that traditionally include high-end cars and champagne draw people from all over who want to participate in the costumed celebrations. This year’s tailgates included an Arabian Nights theme with Middle Eastern foods, an Alice in Wonderland theme and a NASCAR theme that included NASCAR official food, Subway sandwiches.
Chip McKenney, Juan Bollini, Christine Vermes and Jack Hoffman. Photo by Alan Fabricant. If you love adventure, fun and the challenging sport of polo, the supportive GPL may be a good place for you to share your athletic skills and be part of next year’s celebration. For more information about GPL, visit www.gaypolo.com.
| COMPETE | May 2014
2014 Arabian Nights Themed Tailgate. Photo by Meg McGuire, courtesy of Phelps Media Group.
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SYDNEY HOSTS RUGBY’S BINGHAM CUP WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES From August 24–31 the magical city of Sydney, Australia plays host to rugby’s bi-annual gay world championship series, the Bingham Cup. It was named to honor rugby player Mark Bingham, one of the 9/11 heroes on flight 93. It will be winter there with highs averaging 62 degrees and lows near 45 degrees – perfect weather for exploring. When you go, stay downtown Brian Raymond where all the action, nightlife, most popular attractions and the gay center are located. Start your visit on the waterfront at Sydney’s most iconic symbol, the Sydney Opera House with its white architectural “sails” defining its roofline and its Sydney Harbour backdrop. Guided tours are available but be sure to book early. Next, walk to The Rocks, the restored 19th century center of Sydney with its cobbled streets, pubs and historical buildings. On your way you’ll pass the Museum of Contemporary Art and the Circular Quay (pronounced ‘key’) transportation hub with ferry, bus and train service throughout metro Sydney. Just behind the Opera House is the magnificent 74-acre Royal Botanic Gardens. At the south end, cross College Street and take a leisurely stroll through Hyde Park past the classical Archibald Fountain, a favorite stop for photographers. You’ll find the gay district along Oxford St at the southeast corner of Hyde Park. The cheapest and easiest way to enjoy the coastline, city skyline and beauty of the Harbour is on the Manly ferry – be sure to take a camera. Want a bit of a thrill? Try the Skywalk on the Sydney Tower, a 360-degree glass walkway 835 feet above ground or climb up 1,002 steps to the top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge (at 440 feet) for breathtaking views and incredible camera shots. Avoid renting a car as traffic is a nightmare and parking is very limited. But public transportation is excellent with multiday passes available that include service to the site of the Bingham Cup, the zoo, the wildlife park, Darling Harbour and more. Pack electrical plug adaptors and make sure your electronics can down convert Australia’s 240v/50hz power. One last thing, it’s a great city so extend your vacation a few extra days. To visit Sydney or any other vacation destination, you can contact Brian Raymond at brian@OutDestinations.com or 866-217-2341.
| COMPETE | May 2014
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EWG’S DIRTY DOZEN™ BY MIRIAM LATTO AS SUMMER IS ON ITS WAY AND ATHLETES ARE headed out to play, what better way to eat healthy than to grab some of the great fruits and veggies that are found in abundance in supermarkets and at local farmers’ markets? But if you’re not already investing in organic produce from trusted sources, you may be ready to change your mind after checking out the “Dirty Dozen™.” In 2013 the nonprofit advocacy agency Environmental Working Group (EWG) released its Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce. Although one for 2014 has not been released, it’s a pretty sure bet that this list still holds true. Their list included the Dirty Dozen™ list of 12 fruits and vegetables that are the most contaminated with pesticides.
those on the rest of the list are still just as important to your good health. So if you want to continue enjoying your favorite grab ‘n go fruit and veggie snacks listed below, you might want to switch to organic produce. Although many have shied away from buying organic produce due to higher costs, retail giant Walmart has teamed up with No. 2 U.S. organic grocer Wild Oats to sell a collection of pantry staples to drive down organic prices. This announcement came just one day after Target announced a partnership with 17 natural, organic and sustainable brands that include Annie’s Homegrown, Burt’s Bees, Clif Bar & Co. and Horizon Organic in its new “Made to Matter – Handpicked by Target” program. FROM THE EWG SHOPPER’S GUIDE TO PESTICIDES IN PRODUCE: 1. APPLES The biggest offender on this year’s Dirty Dozen list, apple samples tested positive for at least one pesticide residue in 99 percent of cases. 2. STRAWBERRIES Strawberries ranked as the second most contaminated fruit on this year’s list. 3. GRAPES A single grape tested positive for 15 pesticides. 4. CELERY Samples of celery tested positive for 13 different pesticides. 5. PEACHES Peaches rank fifth on this year’s Dirty Dozen list. 6. SPINACH Spinach is the second most contaminated veggie on this year’s list. 7. SWEET BELL PEPPERS Like grapes, a single sweet bell pepper tested positive for 15 pesticides. 8. NECTARINES (imported) Every sample of imported nectarines analyzed by the EWG tested positive for pesticides.
According to their website, www.ewg.org, “In government tests analyzed by the Environmental Working Group, detectable pesticide residues were found on 67 percent of food samples after they had been washed or peeled. We found striking differences between the number of pesticides and amount of residues detected on Dirty Dozen Plus™ and Clean Fifteen™ foods. Although “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” adage still applies, apples are winding up as the number one offender on this list. Their healthy properties, like
| COMPETE | May 2014
9. CUCUMBER Cucumbers rank ninth on this year’s Dirty Dozen. 10. POTATOES The average potato had a significantly higher total weight of pesticides in comparison with other food crops. 11. CHERRY TOMATOES Cherry tomatoes tested positive for 13 different pesticides. 12. HOT PEPPERS Rounding out the Dirty Dozen are hot peppers, as the 12th most contaminated pick.
Who was the first unseeded tennis player to win Wimbledon?
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A: Boris Becker became the first unseeded player to win Wimbledon in 1985 at age 17. He also became both the youngest player to win the title and the first German. Before retiring in 1999, he won a total of six grand slam events.
AVOID FITNESS FLAWS TO MAXIMIZE YOUR RESULTS BY MARK MOON MYTHS AND MISCONCEPTIONS – they’re a common component of a large number of workout programs and magazine articles. Try not to fall into the same traps by following my myth-busting guide to strike the right balance in your routine and achieve the goals (and body) you’ve always wanted!
THE ONE-HOUR WORKOUT! REALITY: Avoid believing fitness nonsense – you absolutely, positively never need 60 minutes for an amazing workout! Studies prove HIIT or highintensity interval training is great for you and that you can achieve excellent results in as little as 30 minutes a session. I always say a quick workout is a good workout as long as you are working hard. So just get off your butt and do something.
CARBO-LOADING REALITY: Plying yourself full of pasta before a workout really is a waste of calories – you don’t need to stockpile carbohydrates to achieve great results and last the distance (unless you’re running a marathon, that is). Have a small healthy snack featuring some protein and/or fruit and vegetables about 45 minutes before a session to help fuel your workout. All those complex carbohydrates can be hard to digest and cause your body to be sluggish and not burn fat as a fuel. Remember to hydrate adequately, too.
“GO HARD OR GO HOME” REALITY: Intensity is important to achieve your results, but so is rest and recovery. Don’t overdo it and push yourself too hard, too often otherwise you’ll cripple your progress or worse, suffer long-term injuries. Remember as tempting as it may be to train more, your body recovers and gets the results at rest. Aim for a weekly total of three strong full-body sessions if you’re a beginner or four-to-five split-body workouts if you’re an advanced trainer. Just be sure to get adequate recovery time in between – 24 hours for each muscle group/area is best. Mark Moon is one of today’s leading health, wellness, and fitness trainers, influential Blood Type Diet expert and creator of the Get Fit Fast online fitness and lifestyle program. To learn more visit www.markmoonfitness.com.
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FOLLOW THE SAME PROGRAM FOR EIGHT WEEKS REALITY: Planning your workouts months in advance is great. But if sticking to a routine is proving taxing, is negatively impacting your social life and/or bottoming-out your energy levels, the regime is simply not going to be sustainable. Workout when you can – remembering you really only need about 30-45 minutes at a time – and whenever you feel most energetic. Be ready and willing to change it up! Some days you’ll feel like exercising in the morning, others at night. Switching up your workout days and what you do each session will prevent burnout, giving your body time to repair itself and ensuring your improvements never plateau. This will also help keep you motivated and banish boredom so you stay mentally stimulated, too. REMEMBER, the best program is the one you aren’t doing right now. Experiment – change things up and find out what works best for you to develop a killer training program and see your results soar, see the fat melt away. Most importantly, never be sucked in by another fitness myth again!
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Although experts agree that fruits and vegetables are an important part of a healthy diet, many of us don’t really eat a healthy diet on a regular basis. Fortunately, Juice PLUS+® helps bridge the gap between what you should eat and what you do eat. Unlike old-fashioned vitamin supplements, Juice PLUS+® provides concentrated whole food-based nutrition from a wide variety of fruits and vegetables. The benefits from Juice PLUS+® are backed by over 25 clinical research studies conducted at leading universities – they include a healthier immune system, improved cardiovascular health, reduced oxidative stress, reduced DNA damage and healthier skin and gums. Only the best varieties of high-quality farm-fresh fruits and vegetables go into Juice PLUS+®. Available in either capsule or chewable form, you can choose from orchard, garden or vineyard blends that come from 25 different fruits, vegetables, grains and berries. In Phoenix, contact Carol Brown at:
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AQUATICS Tsunami de Mayo Water Polo Tournament Moraga, Calif. May 3-4 Big Apple Holedrive V â€“ Forbidden Fruit New York City May 24-25
BOWLING Greater Rochester Eastern Area Tournament Rochester, NY May 2 Sunshine Invitational Tournament Orlando May 2 Rose Bowl Classic Portland May 30
DANCING 1st International Ballroom Convention 2014 New York City Mar 29-Apr 5
ICE HOCKEY 14th Annual Chelsea Challenge New York, NY May 23-26
MULTI-SPORT Big Apple Recreational Sports Charity Field Day Brooklyn, NY May 10
SOFTBALL Texas Shootout Austin May 3 Big Peach Softball Tournament Atlanta May 23 North Star Classic Minneapolis May 24
| COMPETE | May 2014
GAY SPORTS EVENTS AROUND THE COUNTRY
FIND MORE EVENTS ONLINE AT COMPETENETWORK.COM
Liberty Bell Classic Philadelphia May 24 Duel in the Desert Las Vegas May 24
TENNIS GLTA Grass Court Championships 2014 Rancho Mirage, Calif. May 1-4 Spring Fling 2014 Fort Lauderdale May 3-4 Columbus Classic 2014 Columbus, Ohio May 9-11 2014 City of Decatur Tournament Decatur May 12-18 Long Beach Pride Doubles 12 Long Beach May 17-18 United States Gay Open 2014 San Francisco May 23-26 Bluegrass Tennis Open 2014 Louisville May 24-26 Marsha Day MTG Club Championships 2014 Flushing, NY May 24-26 Miami Flamingo Open Miami Beach May 24-26
VOLLEYBALL DC Championships Washington, D.C. May 23
PRIDE EVENTS MAY
California Men of Color Pride, Palm Springs May 2-4
Purple Party, Dallas May 9-12
New Hope Pride May 11-18
Long Beach Pride May 17-18
AIDS Walk, New York City May 18
Memorial Weekend Pensacola May 22-26
Sizzle, Miami May 22-27
International Mr. Leather, Chicago May 23-26
Buffalo Pride Fest May 25-June 1
Kansas Diversity Coalition May 31-June 1
Albuquerque Pride May 31
YEARBOOK THIS MONTH IN SPORTS HISTORY: MAY
Bill Elliott sets stock car speed record of 212.229 mph - 1986
Orioles sign 15-year lease to stay in Baltimore & get new park - 1988
Garry Kasparov begins chess match with IBM supercomputer Deep Blue - 1997
Houston’s Bob Watson scores baseball’s onemillionth run of all time - 1975
Lennox Lewis TKOs Phil Jackson in 8 for heavyweight boxing title - 1994
120th Kentucky Derby: Chris McCarron on Go For Gin wins in 2:03.6 - 1994
U.S.S.R. announces it won’t participate in L.A. Summer Olympics - 1984
Baltimore Oriole Jim Gentile hits 2 grand slam (9 RBIs) vs Minnesota Twins - 1961
7th ABA championship: NY Nets beat Utah Stars, 4 games to 1 -1974
Mario Andretti records fastest Indianapolis 500 lap (221.565 mph) - 1988
Bobby Riggs beats Margaret Smith Court in Mother’s Day match in California - 1973
1st Tour de Trump bicycle race run (Atlanta) - 1989
Phillies Curt Simmons gives up single, then retires next 27 in a row - 1953
Baltimore, Cleveland and Pittsburgh agree to go from NFC to AFC in NFL - 1969
Bruno Sammartino beats Buddy Rogers in NY to become WWF champ - 1963
Nancy Lopez wins LPGA Chrysler-Plymouth Golf Classic - 1985
Buster Mathis defeats Joe Frazier to qualify for U.S. Olympic boxing team - 1964
Red Sox pitcher Roger Clemens beats Yankees for his 200th win - 1996
California Angels involved in a bus crash in NJ - 1992
Dale Greig runs female marathon world record (3:27:45) - 1964
1st major league night baseball game, in Cincinnati (Reds 2, Phil 1) - 1935
Indians’ Carlos Martinez’s fly ball bounces off Jose Canseco’s head and over fence for home run - 1993
1st indoor swimming pool opens (Goodman’s Fields, London) - 1742
Larry Bird beats out Magic Johnson for NBA rookie of year - 1980
Robert “Evel” Knievel’s motorcycle jumps 16 automobiles - 1967
BPAA U.S. Women’s Bowling Open won by Dana MillerMackie - 1990
| COMPETE | May 2014
119th Preakness: Mike Smith aboard Prairie Bayou wins in 1:56.6 - 1993
12 Chris Evert’s 125-match winning streak on clay ends - 1979
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