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No. 15 • March 1, 2018 • OutwordCalifornia.com

Travel Like a Maharajah page 13


Outword California Staff PUBLISHER Fred Palmer A RT DIRECTOR/ PRODUCTION Ron Tackitt GRA PHIC DESIGN Ron Tackitt EDITOR Charles Peer editor@outwordcalifornia.com A RTS EDITOR Chris Narloch SA LES Fred Palmer CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Diana Kienle Colt McGraw Chris Narloch Bonnie Osborn Charles Peer PHOTOGRA PHY Charles Peer Ron Tackitt ON THE COVER Sunset at Golden Temple in Amritsar, Punjab, India.

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EQCA 2018 Legislation Focuses on LGBT Health

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epidemic of LGBTQ youth homelessness. quality California announced its 2018 sponsored legislative AB 2719 by Assemblymember Jacqui package on Feb. 21, that included seven Assembly bills and one Senate bill that focus on the most vulnerable among the Irwin This bill will ensure that LGBTQ older LGBTQ community, addressing disparities in health and well-being adults are recognized as a population in that stem from longstanding discrimination and lack of acceptance need of special attention, and that they can access the services and support they need to towards the LGBTQ community. “California must continue to serve as a beacon of hope for the rest of the nation,” said Rick Zbur, Executive Director of Equality California. “In Washington and across the country, the LGBTQ community faces attempts to roll back civil rights and cut programs that LGBTQ people depend on for their health and well-being. Now more than ever, our state must continue to make progress toward our goal of creating a world that is healthy, just, and fully equal for all LGBTQ people.” Equality California is sponsoring the following legislation in 2018 with additional bills anticipated to be announced in coming weeks:

AB 2943 by Assemblymember Evan Low

This bill would make clear that claiming to be able to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity is a fraudulent business practice that misleads consumers and exposes LGBTQ people to damaging psychological abuse.

AB 2119 by Assemblymember Todd Gloria This bill makes clear that to meet the obligation for transgender and gender

maintain their health and live their lives with dignity.

AB 2639 by Assemblymembers Marc Berman & Patrick O’Donnell

This bill will establish standards for online training on suicide prevention for teachers and school staff to prepare them to assist nonconforming youth, child welfare agencies young people when they need support most. The training must include a focus on must ensure access to clinicians who provide high-risk populations, including LGBTQ gender-affirming treatment consistent with youth. established standards of care.

AB 2153 by Assemblymember Tony Thurmond

This bill will provide LGBTQ cultural competency training for teachers and school staff and provide schools with resources to support LGBTQ students and create safer school environments.

SB 918 by Senator Scott Wiener and Assemblymember Blanca Rubio

This bill will establish services for youth experiencing homelessness and invest in low-barrier and diverse housing opportunities so each county can have an array of options for youth to escape homelessnessand require that participating programs be safe, inclusive, non-stigmatizing, and culturally competent to address the

AB 2663 by Assemblymember Laura Friedman

This bill would provide retroactive relief to individuals who were registered as domestic partners in municipal jurisdictions and may have had their property taxes increased due to the death of a partner.

AB 1985 by Assemblymember Phil Ting

This bill provides guidance for local law enforcement agencies to update and strengthen their policies on hate crimes, focusing on recognizing hate crimes when they have occurred, engaging in appropriate response given the targeted community and the broader community, and fostering a community environment that prevents future hate crimes and incidents from occurring.

SFGMC Concert Builds Bridges for a Better Future

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he San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus (SFGMC) continues Season 40: Unstoppable with Bridges, a one-night-only homecoming concert centered around music’s ability to move hearts and minds and catalyze momentous change.

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“We live in a city of bridges,” says Dr. Tim Seelig, SFGMC Artistic Director. “Over the last 40 years, the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus has been an integral part of bridging together the LGBTQ community in the Bay Area and worldwide. Last fall, we took our music and message on the road to five states in the Deep South for our Lavender Pen Tour. During that week, we learned so much about our country, our LGBTQ brothers and sisters, and most of all, ourselves. We want to share those stories and experiences with our Bay Area audiences with Bridges.”

The 275 members of the Chorus will be joined by three Oakland Interfaith choirs and iconic folk activist Holly Near for this show. Videos and photos from the tour with shared stories will be interspersed and the California premiere of Joel Thompson’s stunning new choral work Seven Last Words of the Unarmed, which deals with police brutality and social justice in our divisive political climate will be performed. Bridges will also feature a special performance of “Singing for Our Lives,” a protest folk song written by activist and

March 1, 2018 - April 5, 2018 • No. 15

singer/songwriter Holly Near and first performed in 1978 by SFGMC at the candlelight vigil mourning the assassination of Supervisor Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone. Near will join SFGMC to perform this iconic song. Presented by the John C. Kish Foundation, Bridges will take place at Davies Symphony Hall (201 Van Ness Avenue, San Francisco) on Thursday, March 29 at 8 p.m. Tickets range in price from $25­–$125 and are available now by visiting www.sfgmc.org or by calling City Box Office at 415-392-4400. OutwordCalifornia.com


Briefly Put

Anti-LGBTQ Adoption Bill Passes Georgia Senate

The Georgia State Senate has passed the “Keep Faith in Adoption and Foster Care Act,” that would allow child welfare organizations, including adoption and foster care agencies, to refuse to place children with same-sex couples based on religious beliefs. “Plain and simple, Georgia’s Republican lawmakers are discriminating against LGBTQ parents,” siad DNC LGBTQ Media Director Lucas Acosta. “With over 14,000 children in foster care in Georgia, the Georgia legislature should be focusing on how it can attract more qualified and loving parents to the system – not rejecting potential homes based on the gender identity or sexual orientation of the parents. The bill passed Friday, Feb. 23, along party lines 35-19 and will now head to the Georgia House of Representatives for consideration.

C A L I F O R N I A

Kansas GOP Votes To Oppose All Efforts To Validate Transgender Identity

The Kansas Republican Party’s state committee has voted to “oppose all efforts to validate transgender identity,” while saying that they recognizes the dignity of those who are gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender. Eric Teetsel, who proposed the resolution, said he was motivated by loves and the party needs to be willing to tell people what is true and good, and that the party affirms “God’s design for gender as determined by biological sex and not by self-perception.” The document also opposes efforts to surgically or hormonally alter an individual’s body to conform with “perceived gender identity.” Equality Kansas said it was “incredibly disappointed” that Kansas Republicans had promoted “such an undignified and crass assault.”

don’t miss a thing.

Theme for NYC Pride 2018 Is “Defiantly Different”

NYC Pride announces 2018’s official theme, “Defiantly Different” speaking to the breadth of the LGBTQ+ community as a unified people and its tenacious individuality. “This year’s theme is about showing our power, squaring our shoulders in the face of adversity, and continuing to sculpt that magnetic bond within the LGBTQ+ community and our allies,” said David Studinski, NYC Pride Co-Chair. “The corresponding creative showcases a wide selection of defiantly different community members - from performance artists to mental health advocates. We are standing defiantly – defiantly different and defiantly as one.”

The GenderCool Project National Campaign Is Launched by Parents to Advance the Gender Conversation

C A L I F O R N I A

In the midst of a national conversation about the rights of transgender youth, two parent advocates are coming together to unveil a campaign that’s more “show” than “tell.” The GenderCool Project is an awareness campaign that opens up the conversation around gender in a way the general public can understand. The campaign’s centerpiece chronicles the accomplishments of transgender kids and their young allies across the United States. The campaign launch will include: dynamic video content series highlighting five charismatic young people with dozens of more stories to come; positive messaging around the topic of gender highlighted through engaging website and social media platforms; powerful family story video, told for the first time by one of the founding families; and Team GenderCool, a movement to build power and strength while doing good for others. For more information, please visit www.gendercool.org

SC Bill Would Cut Marriage Rights of Same-Sex Couples

Six members of the South Carolina House of Representatives have introduced legislation in the Judiciary Committee that purports to undercut the rights of same-sex couples to marriage equality. The “Marriage and Constitution Restoration Act” would define marriage as a “union between a man and a woman,” and amend state law to term unions of same-sex couples as “parody marriages.” “This bill is an absurd insult to the gay and lesbian families of South Carolina, and their children,” said Shaundra Young Scott, executive director of the ACLU of South Carolina. “Marriage equality is settled law, affirmed in 2015 by the United States Supreme Court. The authors use a ridiculous legal argument in a blatant attempt to roll back the rights of LGBTQ citizens. The real parody here is not marriages of same-sex couples, but the introduction of the ‘Marriage and Constitution Restoration Act’ as any kind of governing.”

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March 1, 2018 - April 5, 2018 • No. 15

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San Francisco

SF Flower & Garden Show Returns to the Cow Palace

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fter a 10 year absence, the San Francisco Flower & Garden Show is returning to the Cow Palace, where plant lovers can stroll through gorgeous designer gardens, with artfully arranged plants, trees, and flowers in full bloom.

Gaia, the primal Greek Mother Goddess, depicted by Goulart Designs at a previous SF Flower & Garden Show.

The Plant Market will be in full bloom, highlighting 1000s of unique items for your gardening adventures and outdoor living. There will be seminars ongoing at the Discovery and Floral Fantasy stages plus the Halls will be filled with beautiful and informative displays. There will also be demonstrations by world-class floral designers and you can

discover how to create your own remarkable garden with hands-on demonstrations and inspiring seminars by professional gardeners and nursery owners who can answer all your questions — and help solve those nagging problems. The SF Flower & Garden Show will be held April 4 - 8, at the Cow Palace in Daly City. Tickets and more info at www. sfgardenshow.com/the-show

Fischerspooner’s “Top Brazil” CD Release Tour to Hit LA & SF

SF Exhibit Smoke + Mirrors Explores Modern Drag

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MOKE + MIRRORS:: Exploring Modern Drag is a window into the vibrant nightlife of San Francisco’s diverse drag community as seen thru the lens of ubiquitous night life photographer Gooch.

Gooch image from The Monster Show 2016 with Rock M Sakura, KaiKai Bee Michaels, Sue Casa, Justin Sam, Terri Twaught Waffle(in the air), K Color, Cruzin d’Loo, Redwood and Bobby Barnaby.

Gooch captures a spectrum of performance identity from drag queens, drag kings, faux queens, and club kids of diverse genders. All photographs were taken either in performance or on the sidelines of performances rather than in studio. Born in the UK, Gooch attended the prestigious Newport College of Art and Design where he studied under British photographer David Hurn, of the Magnum Photos collaborative. The focus of his work in the last few years has been on documenting the disenfranchised sub-cultures of our time: the dynamism of street art and the artists who create it; the recent LGBT political struggle with marriage equality; and as in this

exhibition, the LGBT performing arts community. By doing this, he memorializes these fragments of society in what can be a very transitory culture. Readers of the Bay Area Reporter voted Gooch Best Nightlife Photographer 2017. His work can regularly be seen in that publication. His photos are also featured in LEFT magazine, an independent LGBT publication. Smoke + Mirrors: Exploring Modern Drag will be exhibited at the Ravot Gallery, 115 Clement St. March 16th through April 13th. An artist reception will be held on Fri. March 16, from 6 to 10 p.m. Visit www. garethgoochphotography.com/SmokeMirrors/

Terence McNally’s It’s Only a Play Coming to NCTC in SF

Fischerspooner’s new CD Sir, and the track “TopBrazil” embody the groups resistant narrative as an overtly queer and celebratory body of work in response to the current atmosphere in America. They will be bringing their tour to San Francisco on March 14, Los Angeles on March 15 and Santa Ana on March 16. Tickets at showsnear.by/fischerspoonertour. Watch the steamy video for “Top Brazil” at www.youtube.com/watch?v=oMwsmhgVi6I&feature=youtu.be

10 Outword California

It’s opening night of Peter Austin’s new play on Broadway, and while at the producer’s penthouse for a lavish party, he anxiously awaits the play’s reviews. With his career on the line and celebrities pouring in downstairs, he huddles upstairs with the producer, director and star of the show: a perfect setup for backstabbing comedy in this regional premier of Terence McNally’s It’s only a Play. Through April 1. Visit www.nctcsf.org

March 1, 2018 - April 5, 2018 • No. 15

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You Should Be Here.

Kink Fest April 14-16, 2017 Red Dress Party May 20, 2017 Portland Pride June 17-18,2017 Peacock in the Park June 25, 2017 Oregon Leather Pride August 4-13, 2017 Gay Softball World Series September 7-10, 2017 and many more...

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March 1, 2018 - April 5, 2018 • No. 15

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Travel Like a Maharajah: See India in Style Without Breaking the Bank by Eric Poole

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any people think India isn’t much more than the Taj Mahal and poor people selling Chiclets. But this country of 35 UNESCO World Heritage sites (the U.S., by comparison, has 23), is chock full of extraordinary sightseeing.

and a large bath (some even come with picture windows). With a ship like this, you can eat and drink your face off and sleep under Egyptian cotton duvets – all for a surprisingly low price.

had to get immediate hospital treatment – not the kind of thing you want to attempt on your own, unless you’re looking for a good story to tell at cocktail parties. There’s no better way to see India than to

And thanks to an amazing exchange rate, you can see it all in 5-star luxury, for prices comparable to a 4-star trip elsewhere! Seeing a country like India is a lifechanging experience. But let’s face it, most of us would like to have a life-changing experience followed by a nice dinner and a bottle of wine, and while the culture of this ancient and less developed country is absolutely fascinating, it can also be a little overwhelming. As Americans, we’re not always up for the power going out every couple of hours, or having to dodge cows on the way to lunch. That’s why there’s nothing better after spending the day immersing yourself in these incredibly unique – and sometimes chaotic – cultures of India than to come back to a peaceful, elegant river cruise ship or 5-star hotel, and be pampered like a third world dictator. Especially when you can do it for a relative bargain! Fortunately, not all the tours to India are with straight tour operators. A handful of gay travel companies, like Brand g Vacations offer all-LGBT trips that make the experience not only more memorable, but way less annoying, since you won’t have somebody’s kid throwing a tantrum in a palace, or old cranky old men who yell, “Where’s the bathroom?” in a

2) Be sure to choose one that’s fully escorted, since the India experience can be a challenge to navigate on your own. There are incredible opportunities to experience and interact with local culture, but you want to have these knowing that there’s an experienced guide there to help facilitate them and solve any problems. On one recent gay tour, a guest had a medical issue and

see it in 5-star style. So, whether you do it with a gay tour operator, on your own, or with a straight tour company, come explore this extraordinary country like the maharajah – or goddess, or diva, or despot – you were meant to be! Eric Poole is Director of Marketing for Brand g Vacations, the Leader in All-LGBT River Cruises and Land Tours.

monastery. With that in mind, here are a couple of tips for booking a tour to India: 1) Look for a company that uses 5-star river cruise and hotel accommodations – like the all-suite Ganges Voyager cruise ship, for example. Each Voyager suite has high ceilings (a rarity in river or ocean cruise ships), a french balcony, hand-painted murals

Gay Love Travels in Style on Suitsupply’s Global Platform

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uitsupply, the global men’s tailoring brand has released their SS18 campaign putting the spotlight on gay love, and illuminating the attraction between two men on an international basis. While pride and love are celebrated in many parts of the world, it is generally left out of mainstream advertising. On display throughout nearly 100 stores, across 22 countries, the Suitsupply SS18 campaign will have gay relationships front and center, lauded as the “everyday” gentleman. Suitsupply has a strong reputation for combining best-in-class luxury fabrics, with expert craftsmanship and an unparalleled in-store tailoring experience. The new collection, available now in stores and online, features linen cotton blended suits, boldly checked jackets, lightweight bombers and introduces new colors to their highly coveted

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Traveler Edition. The Traveler suits and shirts are crafted from smart luxury fabrics that won’t wrinkle in any suitcase, designed specifically for their on-the-go customer. “The attraction between people is an important part of fashion advertising.,” said Fokke De Jong, Suitsupply Founder & CEO. “While there is a potential for negative impact, a campaign featuring the attraction between men was long overdue and particularly relevant for our brand.” Visit www.suitsupply.com for more information and photos of this stunning line just in time for your sring jaunts..

March 1, 2018 - April 5, 2018 • No. 15

Outword California 13


Los Angeles

2018 LA Impact Awards to Honor TLC’s Nate & Jeremiah

Stars of the interior design show Nate and Jeremiah By Design on T LC have become one of the world’s most recognizable interior design duos, and with the arrival of their daughter Poppy, Jeremiah and Brent contribute to the prominence and visibility of LGBTQ families on American’s TV screens across the country. They will be honored on March 17 at The Globe Theatre, Universal Studios. For tickets, visit laimpactawards.com/tickets/

EJAF to Hold LA Oscars Viewing Party

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ir Elton John and David Furnish will host the Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF)’s 26th annual Academy Awards Viewing Party at West Hollywood Park in LA the night of the Oscars.

BVLGARI is the gala event’s Presenting Sponsor for the Party to be held Sunday, March 4, 2018, This year, through the support of EJAF’s friends at BBVA Compass, the Roca Brothers of the Michelin three-star restaurant El Celler de Can Roca in Girona, Spain, will design and prepare a sumptuous dinner for Party guests to enjoy while watching a live telecast of the 90th Academy Awards. Alexander Gilkes of Paddle8 will return to conduct the evening’s highly anticipated live auction and illusionist David Jarre will make a special appearance, with the event concluding on the dance floor until dawn with DJ Johnny Dynell. Greta Van Fleet will be the evening’s special guest performers. Greta Van Fleet features four young musicians, three brothers and their best friend, who are producing exciting, high-energy rock-n-roll. Hailing from the tiny Michigan hamlet of Frankenmuth, the four were raised on their

parents’ extensive vinyl collections and were encouraged to be creative, daring, and innovative. Identified by Rolling Stone as one of their “10 New Artists You Need to Know,” Greta Van Fleet’s debut single “Highway Tune” was #1 for five consecutive weeks on the Mainstream (Billboard) Rock Radio charts. EJAF’s Academy Awards Viewing Party is the most highly visible and successful fundraising event in Hollywood on Oscar night. Over the past quarter century, this annual event has raised more than $62 million, thanks to the generosity of EJAF’s supporters. These funds help the Foundation make a real difference in the lives of people at risk for or living with HIV/AIDS, including urgently needed medical care in the Caribbean, innovative treatment and prevention programs in the Southern United States, and national initiatives addressing the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the United States, Canada, and Latin America.

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March 1, 2018 - April 5, 2018 • No. 15

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Outfest Fusion 2018: LGBT People of Color Film Festival

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utfest has announced its lineup for the 2018 Outfest Fusion LGBTQ People of Color Film Festival. Outfest Fusion, the only multicultural LGBT film festival of its kind, will be held March 9-13 at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood and various locations throughout Los Angeles.

Evening Shadows (Surmaee Shaam)

Now in its 15th year, Outfest Fusion will include five days of film screenings, filmmaker Q&As, filmmaking workshops and networking events that celebrate the diversity of the LGBT community. Outfest Fusion is presented by Showtime. “In the past 16 months we have seen an alarming number of statistics reporting an increase in violence against people of color and LGBTQ persons. This sad fact reminds me why Outfest Fusion matters. It is the power of our stories which create spaces for understanding, open dialogs, and enlighten each other to the universalities that make us human while celebrating those aspects that make us unique,” said Outfest Executive Director Christopher Racster. Outfest Fusion 2018 will kick off on Friday, March 9, with the annual Fusion Gala at the historic Egyptian Theatre featuring an exquisite collection of QPOC shorts celebrating the intersectionality of the LGBTQ family. There will be a special

performance by the rapper and performance artist Mykki Blanco at the Fusion Gala After-Party. Weekend highlights include the LA premieres of Mr Gay Syria, a documentary following the lives of two gay Syrian refugees as they struggle to restore their lives; the quirky comedy White Rabbit, one of this year’s Sundance NEXT standouts starring Vivian Bang, and Shakedown, a documentary exploring the LA strip club that celebrated female desire and sexuality within the African-American community. On Monday, March 12, Fusion will be hosting a screening at Plaza De La Raza of the feel-good campy musical comedy Holy Camp! which is based on the cult play LA LLAMADA. The night will end with the LatinXplosive shorts program featuring films from directors Pedro Jorge, Candy Guinea, Armando Ibañez, Kase Pena, Nance Messino and Cole Santiago. For complete listings and to purchase tickets, log on to www.Outfest.org/fusion2018

Coming Soon homes and gardens 2018 Artwork Deadline: March 26,2018 Street Date: April 5, 2018

Make Your Next Spring Vacation a Delice Dream in Spain Don’t miss a single issue. Click here to subscribe - for free!

Billing itself as the only gay spring break in Europe, Delice Dream will be held in Torremolinos (Malaga) starting April 29th. And even if you cant make it, check out this fun promo video at www. youtube.com/watch?time_continue=4&v=rzxRXUINR2g

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March 1, 2018 - April 5, 2018 • No. 15

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15 outca travel  

Welcome to our annual travel issue. We have some great stuff in these digital pages, and we hope you enjoy breezing through them.

15 outca travel  

Welcome to our annual travel issue. We have some great stuff in these digital pages, and we hope you enjoy breezing through them.