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local name, global coverage

June 11, 2014 // vol. 5 // issue 24


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Last week’s hottest items couldn’t wait to be printed...

Compiled by Nicole Wiesenthal

Gay Marriage Legalized in Wisconsin Friday, a federal judge in Madison overturned the ban on same-sex marriage, making Wisconsin the 27th state to issue a ruling striking down same-sex marriage bans. Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen, Monday, filed an appeal to stay the gay marriage ruling. U.S. District Judge Barbara Crabb ruled same-sex marriage to be constitutional


under the premises of liberty and equality. Van Hollen quickly rushed to stay the ruling, filing a petition Monday morning with the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, according to jsonline. Some clerks have waited to hear the decision on the ruling before issuing marriage licenses, while others continue to wed same-sex couples. From South Florida Gay News.

Texas GOP Endorses Conversion Therapy

According to a report in the Houston Chronicle, the Texas GOP, holding its convention in Fort Worth this week, has revamped the party’s platform language on homosexuality in a draft version. The full GOP platform committee will vote on changes Friday, before delegates consider the platform Saturday. In a draft version of the party platform obtained by the Antonio Express-News/


Houston Chronicle, convention delegates have stripped language from the party’s plank on homosexuality that said: We affirm that the practice of homosexuality tears at the fabric of society and contributes to the breakdown of the family unit. Homosexual behavior is contrary to the fundamental, unchanging truths that have been ordained by God. From our media partner, Edge.

Officer Refuses Gay Pride Assignment An officer with the Salt Lake City Police Department has been put on paid administrative leave after he reportedly refused an assignment to work during the weekend’s gay pride parade. Police officials have not identified the officer or explained why he refused to work an assignment during Sunday’s parade,


but they said it was for personal reasons and the incident has sparked an internal affairs investigation. Officers assigned to the parade generally help direct traffic and provide security, and it is likely the officer in question would have been involved in that capacity. From our media partner, Edge.

JUNE 11, 2014 • VOLUME 5 • ISSUE 24

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Gay dads, Brian Rosenberg and Ferd van Gameren, pictured with their three kids, began to help support gay fathers. Submitted Photo South Florida Gay News is published weekly. The opinions expressed in columns, stories, and letters to the editor do not represent the opinions of SFGN, or the Publisher. You should not presume the sexual orientation of individuals based on their names or pictorial representations. Furthermore the word “gay” in SFGN should be interpreted to be inclusive of the entire LGBT community. All of the material/columns that appears in print and online, including articles used in conjunction with the AP, is protected under federal copyright and intellectual property laws, and is jealously guarded by the newspaper. Nothing published may be reprinted in whole or part without getting written consent from the Publisher, at his law office, at SFGN, as a private corporation, reserves the right to enforce its own standards regarding the suitability of advertising copy, illustrations and photographs.

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News Briefs Compiled by Nicole Wiesenthal

Jonah Hill Calls Use of Anti-Gay Slur ‘Disgusting’

Hill apologized Tuesday after being caught freaking out on a paparazzo last weekend, at which time the 30-year-old actor used an anti-gay slur, TMZ reports. Hill was out and about in Los Angeles over the weekend when some paparazzi started asking him question. Initially, the “Wolf of Wall Street” star didn’t say anything but one of the paparazzi got a reaction out of the actor after making fun of his flora print shorts. “I like the shorts though, bro. They are pretty sexy,” the man, who is not from TMZ, said. He followed Hill for another 40-seconds before telling him to have a good day – but that’s when Hill flipped out. “Suck my dick, you faggot,” Hill is heard saying in TMZ’s clip, which was posted Tuesday. Hill apologized for the remark, calling his


reatment Center Accepts Jailed Trans Teen

(AP) A 16-year-old transgender girl detained without criminal charges at an adult women’s prison in Connecticut for the past two months has been accepted into a private treatment center for youths in Massachusetts, the top child welfare official in Connecticut said Thursday. Department of Children and Families Commissioner Joette Katz said she expects the girl to be brought to the treatment center within the next two weeks. Officials didn’t disclose the center’s name or location. Katz said the relocation is tentative, because the girl has the right to ask for a hearing if she objects. The teen, who was born a boy but identifies as a girl, has suffered sexual abuse and other trauma and has a range of mental health needs, according to her lawyer, Aaron Romano. He said he was worried her mental health problems were getting worse because she has been detained in what he called solitary confinement, which DCF officials denied. A state judge in April ordered the girl transferred from DCF custody to Department of Correction custody, because DCF officials said she was too violent for them to handle. Katz said the treatment center that has accepted the girl has staff trained in meeting the needs of transgender youths. She said the center is secure and the program’s goal is to teach the youths how to control their behaviors. From the Associated Press.


nti-Gay Groups Denied From Intervening in Marriage Equality Lawsuit

On June 3, Circuit Court Judge Sarah Zabel ruled against three anti-gay groups who wanted to intervene as parties in Pareto v. Ruvin, the lawsuit challenging Florida’s discriminatory marriage laws in the circuit court for Miami-Dade. The groups trying to intervene include Florida Family Action, Inc. (FFAI), Florida Democratic League Inc. (FDL) and People United to Lead the Struggle for Equality, Inc. (PULSE)— all of which are opposed to same-sex marriage. Judge Zabel turned down the groups’ request because they “will not be directly and immediately affected if others enter into a same-sex marriage, or are prevented from entering into a same-sex marriage.” The court also noted that if these groups were to enter the case based on their beliefs, “so would anyone who has a strongly held belief regarding the constitutionality of the


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Amendment and statutes at issue in this suit.” “Today Judge Zabel reached the proper conclusion in denying the extremists seeking a platform for their anti-gay rhetoric the right to intervene in this case,” said Nadine Smith, CEO of Equality Florida Institute, one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit. “This lawsuit is about fundamental, constitutionally protected rights that are violated by a measure that does real harm to our families.” On July 2, Pareto v Ruvin, a lawsuit filed in January on behalf of six same-sex couples and Equality Florida Institute,will be addressed in court. The lawsuit argues that Florida’s laws barring same-sex couples from marriage violate the United States Constitution by denying them the legal protections and equal dignity that having the freedom to marry provides.


altimore Police Investigate Murder of Trans Woman

Police in Baltimore, Maryland, discovered the body of Kandy Hall, a transgender woman last Tuesday morning, the Baltimore Sun reports. Hall, who lived in Northeast Baltimore, is believed to be the victim of homicide, suffering from a massive trauma to her body. Paramedics pronounced her dead on the scene. Authorities believe she was murdered the same day Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and Police Commissioner Anthony W. Batts hosted a discussion for Northeastern Baltimore residents on public safety. Details about the incident are scarce and Kowalczyk said there weren’t any specific indications of how Hall, 40, was killed that investigators could share with the public. He said the department is containing its work on improving relations with the transgender community, however. “We’re aware of the concern that the transgender community has with working with law enforcement,” he said. “We still want to do whatever we can to bring this case to a close.” Sgt. Jarron Jackson of the Baltimore Police Department told BuzzFeed, “There is not a lot of information” regarding the case. Aaron Merki, co-chair of the council and director of the Free State Legal Project, spoke with police about the killing Wednesday and said he was confident investigators were “very on top of it, and dedicated to completing the investigation.”

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actions “disgusting,” when speaking with Howard Stern Tuesday morning: “What I said in that moment was disgusting and a hurtful term. I should have said nothing or “fuck you...” I’m happy to take the heat for using this disgusting word. What I won’t allow is for anyone – it would break my heart to think that anyone – especially with all the work that I’ve done and all the loved ones that I have – that I would be against anyone for their sexuality.” You can listen to the clip over at TMZ. Hill’s reaction may come as a surprise to some since the actor has been vocal about his support for LGBT rights and even called out Russia’s antigay laws before the Sochi Winter Olympics took place. From our media partner, Edge

Initially, the local police identified Hall as Ricky Carlos Hall and Merki said it was “very inappropriate” for authorities to refer to the victim as a man. Merki added officers are being trained on how to interact with the LGBT community. From our media partner, Edge.


lue Angels Dove Into Porn, Homophobia and Harassment

One of the nation’s most prestigious teams of flying acrobats dive-bombed into the depths of sexual harassment and stayed there for at least a year, a new Navy study says. Under the command of Capt. Gregory McWherter, members of the Blue Angels openly passed around pornography and flew with it in their cockpits during airshows. They cursed gays and spread dirty talk about women. Their chauvinistic behavior turned the squadron into a hostile workplace, a Navy investigation into the shenanigans said. And McWherter not only tolerated them; he set examples of bad behavior and animated those under his command. McWherter was reprimanded after a disciplinary proceeding this week and was previously relieved of his duties as an executive officer. The Blue Angels are the friendly face of the U.S. Navy and Marines and put on aerial stunt shows before live audiences across the country most every week. The scandal has sullied their reputation and that of the military branches they represent, Navy investigators said. In November 2012, the captain’s command ended; he moved on, and his successor inherited a cleanup job. The Navy set up awareness training from various equal opportunity programs to rid the Blue Angels of the smut. In 2014, a service member filed a complaint against McWherter for his lax handling of the harassing atmosphere during his command. Navy investigators concluded that the former commander had allowed what may have seemed like juvenile behavior descend into a “toxic” atmosphere. From our media partner, CNN.

news highlight YouTube Celebrates Gay Athletes Nicole Wiesenthal

For June Pride month, many major Internet corporations have promoted Pride in one way or another. Facebook unleashed its new pride stickers, and Google displays a rainbow banner for LGBT-related searches. YouTube is turning its celebrations towards gay athletes, and it’s no coincidence with more and more athletes feeling comfortable coming out, and Michael Sam’s recent draft into the NFL as the first openly gay player. On June 3, YouTube launched a video with the #ProudToPlay campaign which highlights big moments in the pursuit of equality for LGBT athletes through various clips. The video also features athletes like Kobe Bryant,

Tom Daley and Jason Collins talking about how discrimination should not be a part of sports. The campaign encourages athletes to be proud of their sport and the unity within the community despite the different backgrounds that the players come from. YouTube is asking its users to post their own videos that relate to LGBT sport topics. Last year, YouTube featured “love” as their pride theme, and the decision to make sports this year’s theme shows how society is changing to feature a more positive, mainstream influence of LGBT-acceptance in society.

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news bites

by Nicole Wiesenthal


C Pride Parade to Feature Military Color Guard

(AP) The Washington Post reports an eight-member color guard team from the U.S. Army Military District of Washington led the parade Saturday, following Dykes on Bikes. The Department of Defense authorized the participation. Organizers and military gay rights groups say this is a first nationwide for a gay pride parade. The color guard presented the American flag and flags of each military branch. Capital Pride organizers requested color guards in the past but were rejected. Pentagon spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Nate Christensen says an Armed Forces color guard did perform at the Pentagon last year for a Defense Department pride event. Another performed again Thursday for a pride event.

Photo: Wikipedia


orum to Address Gay Housing Discrimination to Be Held

(AP) The Kentucky Commission Human Rights is hosting its second annual fair housing forum for LGBT residents. The forum is part of the commission’s work with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to reach the LGBT community on housing discrimination. The forum will include presentations by Ronni Sanlo, who focuses on LGBT history, and Maya Rupert, policy director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights. It will be in Louisville on June 12, starting at 10 a.m.


owa Modernizes Cruel HIV Criminilization Law

(SFGN) Iowa LGBT and HIV/AIDS-help organizations celebrated a victory May 30 when Iowa Governor Terry Branstad signed an HIV Bill that will overturn the existing measures against those with HIV and AIDS. Previously Iowa’s predated laws criminalized HIV transmission, forcing people with HIV who knowingly exposed another person with up to 25 years in prison. Even if they used a condom, they could still be jailed for their decision. Now, instead of a “one size fits all” approach, the converts will be sentenced into a tiered system. Iowa became the first state in the nation to reform HIV criminalization laws.


ay Days Expands to Fort Lauderdale

(Watermark) According to Gay Days president Chris Alexander-Manley, the event is expanding into Fort Lauderdale. It’ll debut in 2014, running from Nov. 25 to Dec. 1, Thanksgiving weekend. Alexander-Manley said they “had been thinking about doing a winter-style event,” and the harsh winter up north this year pushed them into making it happen. Gay Days, which celebrated its 24th anniversary in Orlando June 3-8, previously expanded into Las Vegas in 2012 and more recently this year to Arizona. The Fort Lauderdale host hotel will be W Fort Lauderdale, and reservations are available now. There will be daily pool parties and a Gay Days Expo. Presenting sponsors include Bud Light and the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau, according to Alexander-Manley.



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Photo: Wikipedia

Photo: The W Hotel Fort Lauderdale

news local

Strip Club Raid Nets Five SFGN Staff

Business at the Boardwalk, a gay strip club in Fort Lauderdale, was interrupted last Thursday, June 5, as undercover police officers raided the bar. The Fort Lauderdale Police Department alleged in its affidavit for the warrant that at least three dancers had illegally sold cocaine to them over a period of time during an undercover operation that commenced in January. Arrested and charged with secretly selling cocaine to undercover officers on multiple occasions was Yansely Hernandez, 39, a long time dancer at the Boardwalk. He is being detained in the Broward County jail on an immigration hold. Another person accused of delivery of cocaine to a law enforcement officer was Miguel Pazmino, 25, of Hollywood. While executing a search warrant signed by Circuit Court Judge Jeffrey Levenson detectives detained and searched two waiters, Charles Crusoe, Jr., 36, of Wilton Manors, and Frank Gonzalez, 25, for possession of less than one gram of cocaine. The private dance room manager, Anthony Yannuzzi, was also charged. Nightclubs in Florida are under the

jurisdiction of the Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco (ABT). Separate from any criminal charges brought against the alleged suspects, licensed hospitality est a b l i s h m e nt s where drugs are bought or sold face administrative charges and sanctions by ABT, if their conduct was deemed negligent. ABT agents present at the raid said the club will be charged for misconduct. Victor Zepka, Boardwalk’s owner, who is currently undergoing chemotherapy treatments for cancer released the following statement: “The Boardwalk does not condone or permit illegal drugs on the premises. Management will terminate any employees so accused, and will cooperate with law enforcement in its investigation.” Meanwhile, the club is open for business as usual, and management promised to be vigilant in its supervision of dancers. “We have a fun club, good entertainment, a nice restaurant, and no one needs to do illegal drugs to have a good time,” Zepka said. “We don’t tolerate that.”

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news local Tranny: Offensive or Harmless? Nicole Wiesenthal AMERICAN TAX & INSUR ANCE The ‘T-word’ ignites a debate “e safe return of your money is our top priority.”

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The t-word has been tossed around a lot lately, especially by celebrities in the media. But is the word really OK to say to a transgender person “I was called it once, and it was done lightly, but it still shocked me really hard,” said Brendon Lies, a 23-year-old Florida Atlantic University student who’s transitioning from female to male. Everyone has had different experiences with the word. “A friend of mine used to call me a tranny in Alabama, a good friend of mine,” said Reilly Clemens, a 27-year-old transgender University of Florida graduate student. “I asked him why he did that one day. He said he was trying to toughen me up because people would call me it all the time.” Some people have been fortunate. “I’ve only ever heard it once on a television show where people are transgender, and it was never mentioned again,” said Christine Preimesberger, a 19-year-old University of Southern California student who identifies as agender. “I’d be very insulted if someone called me that.” The word Tranny, according to M to F trans activist Kate Bornstein, originated as a way for M to F transgender people and drag queens to be united under a common name. It came to include all in the trans community. Cisgender (non-transgender) people quickly began to use it to group and target trans people. “By being an ftm called this word, especially by cis people, its context generally echoes less so with a lack of understanding, but more with an attitude that we’re all grouped together as something less than human,” Lies said. “It’s become a key word used to look down on us, and that’s usually what I feel from it when it’s used towards me.” RuPaul and other drag queens have recently created controversy because of their decision to use the word publicly despite protests. “He [RuPaul] claims he’s coming from a place of love,” said Nicholas Cavallaro, 21-year-old drag queen and student at the University of Florida. “There’s a difference between intent and impact. I think Ru should take a step back and listen to what trans people are saying who have lived their everyday lives transitioned. Ru has been doing this every day of his life, but he goes home and takes that make-up off.” For most transgender people, hearing the word can still be a painful experience as it is most often associated with violence. “I’ve never been called tranny in a positive way, and I think what’s interesting is that it seems like people who identify as transgender, meaning that they are transitioning in their


hormones or their body, that word is often used in a derogatory way and offers violence,” said Megan Rohrer, a 33-year-old transgender pastor. But all agree that using the word in public should be avoided. “Because that word is used to perpetuate violence, in public it might not be OK for anyone to use it,” said Rohrer. “When I hear it, I worry something violent will happen.” If among close friends, people should first ask consent before using the word. “It’s very important that the person they’re using it with be OK with it,” Clemens said. “If they’re going to call a friend of theirs a tranny or use the words in comments, as well, they need to be very aware of who they’re using it with because some people take an issue with it.” Rohrer agrees, saying that just because someone uses the word, doesn’t mean they’re in the wrong. “I think there are cases when tone of voice outweighs anything else, and so if someone is, for example, the cisgender person married to someone who’s trans that word might come out differently in loving conversation rather than just on the streets,” Rohrer said. Famous transgender people like Laverne Cox, star of the Netflix series “Orange is the New Black” have recently started an empowerment movement to “reclaim” the word, so it can be difficult to tell who finds the word acceptable and who doesn’t. Asking can help clarify. “Most people who are asking the right questions aren’t trying to be hurtful,” Clemens said. “I’m comfortable with being called that, but most people would be more comfortable with other terms like transgender or trans woman.” It’s important to remember that some people do find it acceptable, and even empowering. “I would see it as an empowering word,” Clemens said. “It incorporates our history, and people understand it to be a negatively connoted word. It sets us apart. It describes a way of being. I don’t think that’s inherently bad.” But there’s also a flipside. “If you’re with a close group of friends and you’ve embraced the word yourself, I’m not going to stop you from using it,” Lies said. “It’s more of a problem to me if you ignorantly call people that and you don’t know how they feel.” Consent and context are the keys to using the word. Don’t be afraid to ask if you feel comfortable enough around that person.

news national Final Supreme Court Decisions Due This Month Lisa Keen One religious liberty case may affect gay rights Keen News Service June is the final month of the U.S. Supreme Court’s current session and, while anticipation is not nearly so great this year for the LGBT community as it was last year, there is some concern in the air. Last year, the wait was about marriage: whether the Supreme Court would declare the Defense of Marriage Act and California’s ban on same-sex couples marrying to be unconstitutional. It declared DOMA unconstitutional and, on a legal technicality, it allowed a lower court decision striking California’s Proposition 8 to stand. This year, anxiety surrounds two consolidated cases in which employers are seeking the right to discriminate against employees in the provision of health benefits based on the company owner’s personal religious beliefs. It is the type of conflict – religious beliefs versus non-discrimination laws-- that has arisen time and again in recent years by employers seeking to discriminate against LGBT people. Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores and Conestoga Wood v. HHS are lawsuits brought by the owners of for-profit commercial enterprises --a furniture maker, an arts and craft store, and a bookstore (the latter selling Christianoriented books). The owners of the company object to a requirement by the Affordable Care Act that employers’ health plans include coverage for contraception. They say they’re not trying to stop the use of contraception; they just don’t want to be involved in funding it. The Family Research Council submitted a brief in support of the Hobby Lobby employers, arguing that “commercial activity does not preclude or excuse religious observance and often can be a means of exercising religion.” But an article on reported the Hobby Lobby and Conestoga owners are involved in political efforts to stop the use of contraception, as well as marriage for samesex couples, through its donations to the National Christian Charitable Foundation, which funnels millions of dollars into organizations such as the Alliance Defending Freedom which has defended many state bans on same-sex marriage. LGBT legal activists seek two major concerns with a ruling in favor of the employers in these cases. One is that it could open the door for employers to seek exemptions from providing coverage for other health benefits, such as coverage for the same-sex spouses or partners of employees, reproductive services for lesbian couples, testing and treatment for men at risk of HIV infection, transgender treatment for people with gender dysphoria. And the

other is that employers and individuals might seek exemptions to other laws, such as laws prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. “Given these implications, the Hobby Lobby case is indeed another major moment for the LGBT community,” wrote National Center for Lesbian Rights Policy Counsel Ashland Johnson, in an article for NCLR’s website. “The Supreme Court’s resolution of the case will directly affect our reproductive rights and other health care needs. Equally concerning, it could result in devastating exceptions to protections for LGBT people at the state and local level, jeopardizing literally decades of advocacy and progress.” Following oral argument in March, Lambda Legal’s director of Law and Public Policy, Jenny Pizer, expressed concern that the court may give certain for-profit companies –those closely held by families or small groups of people (also known as S-corporations)— the ability to claim the same sort of religious exemption to ACA that is currently afforded to religious institutions. “If they say any for-profit can claim

religious [exemptions], obviously, that’s very bad,” said Pizer in March. “If they say only S-corporations can have a religious exemption, that’s less bad, but it’s still bad. There are an awful lot of family-owned businesses.” Adding to that worry: On May 5, the Supreme Court surprised some when it ruled in favor of allowing a town board in Greece, New York, open its meetings with a prayer that is specific to a particular religion, usually Christianity. “To hold that invocations must be nonsectarian would force the legislatures that sponsor prayers and the courts that are asked to decide these cases to act as supervisors and censors of religious speech, a rule that would involve government in religious matters to a far greater degree than is the case under the town’s current practice of neither editing or approving prayers in advance nor criticizing their content after the fact,” wrote Justice Anthony Kennedy for a 5 to 4 majority in Town of Greece v. Galloway. Other decisions LGBT legal activists will likely be watching for in the next few weeks include: • National Labor Relations Board v. Noel Canning. The case involves the president’s right to make appointments during Congresssional recess – a tool President Obama has used to get

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a number of openly gay people into positions. He used it to get lesbian legal activist Chai Feldblum cleared onto the Equal Emloyment Opportunity Commission and to install gay nominee Richard Sorian as assistant secretary for public affairs at the Department of Health and Human Services. • McCullen v. Coakley. The Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, and the National Center for Lesbian Rights both signed onto a friend-of-the-court brief in support of a Massachusetts that attempts to protect the safety of women seeking abortions by creating a 35-foot setback for any protest outside such facilities. • Riley v. California. No LGBT group filed a brief in this case, but the gay friendly American Library Association did, arguing that police should not have a right to search a person’s smartphone contents without a warrant, incident to an arrest. Noting that smartphone users store sensitive personal data about themselves and their interests on their smartphones, the ALA brief said, “Smartphones are personal computers in every sense of the word: if every arrest of a person with a smartphone … allows police officers to rummage painstakingly and intrusively through the contents of personal libraries, the loss of constitutionally protected privacy will be great indeed.” © 2014 Keen News Service. All rights reserved.

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news local ArtsUnited Kicks Off ‘We Do, Too’ Exhibition at Broward Library Nicole Wiesenthal

ArtsUnited’s “We Do, Too” gay marriage exhibition went mainstream last week with its display at the Broward Library — the first time its been shown outside of the LGBT community. The show, which is displayed at Gallery 6 in the Broward County Main Library through June 30, displays photographs of gay couples who live in Florida, but went out-of-state to get married. “We were committed to each other emotionally, and in every other aspect, and we wanted to get married just for the same reason that everybody else wants to get married,” said Amy Waxman, one half of a couple whose photo is featured in the exhibition. “You want everyone to know your commitment, and you want it to be public and recognized by everybody around you.” The 27 couples who are featured were each given roses. Along with their photographs, couples also submitted an essay on why they chose to get married. “We were coming up on our first anniversary, and I thought it was a good idea to surprise him [his husband] so I didn’t tell him that I had submitted his photo and an essay,” said Steven Guyer, who is featured in a photo with his husband Rodger Puhn. “We actually found out a few days before our anniversary so I surprised him with that and told him he was going to be in the exhibit.” At last week’s opening reception, founder, curator and co-chair Guy Le Houx spoke about how he got involved in the project. He also talked about how he used to own a gelato shop in Miami when he met a man who gave him space for a gallery. “One day, I had a beautiful courtyard, and I said, ‘I want to do more for the artist community, especially the gay artist community,’ so I did an event in the courtyard,


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and I filled up the racks with art. There were 20 artists,” Houx said. His show eventually moved to Wilton Manors and began touring. The current exhibt marks the first time the show will be displayed outside of the LGBT community. “I loved the thought of people going all over the continent to get married, and I thought a show with wedding pictures from the event would be really a special exhibition and a poignant message that here in Florida, none of our marriages are recognized,” said Dragulend Dublond, who is featured with his husband. The show will continue touring and spreading its message throughout Florida, heading next to the Stonewall Museum in Wilton Manors. SFGN CEO Piero Guidugli and his husband Tom Fillmore are featured in the exhibition. They held a marriage ceremony in Fort Lauderdale on May 20, 2012, but were legally married in Iowa.

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MCTKW-9329 South Florida Gay News News LO1 • 6/12/14

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column bil of rights Wedding Disengagement

Even today a ‘family of choice’ is still important Bil Browning


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Last week my partner, Jerame, and I announced our engagement on Facebook. We’re going to get hitched in October on our 16th anniversary. We decided to skip the big elaborate wedding. Instead, we invited our mothers plus our daughter. After a decade and a half together, the ceremony itself isn’t that important; we’re making our love legal, but most people consider us married already. We’ll host a party for local friends that weekend to celebrate instead. I even joked to Jerame that posting the news to Facebook would be the highlight of the lead up to the wedding. With so many fans and followers, all of the “likes” that would pour in would surely increase my Klout social media influencers score! Even though I come from a large family, I’m not close to any of them. My father was physically abusive, mom was emotionally cold, and my seven half-brothers and sisters are ten to twenty years older than me and spread out across the country. After I came out as a 16 year old, I moved out of mom’s house when it became a toxic environment. I got an apartment and finished high school living on my own. I learned selfsufficiency at a young age. In fact, at my grandmother’s funeral recently, my mother wanted a photo of herself and all of her children. It is the only photograph of me with all of my siblings. We’d never been in the same place at the same time before. I told them after we took the picture that Jerame and I were getting married. No one offered congratulations. Mom declined her invitation to the wedding saying it was “too far to travel” even though we’d offered to pay for her transportation and hotel. I was hurt, but I know we’re not a closeknit group. Still, I expected Mom would want to see her youngest child get married. Unexpectedly, the ceremony — and my lack of familial support — became slightly more important. After Jerame told his mom and our daughter, we posted the engagement announcement on Facebook. As expected, the “likes” and kudos came flooding in — and then the negative comments started to show up in the thread as well. Three people said, “Eww.” One declared the idea of two men marrying “rubbish” and one fine gentleman — who neither of us even knew — IOstarted posting Biblical verses condemning gay people and declaring that we were going to hell. Our friends quickly started to challenge Mr. Leviticus and the thread


began to devolve into a flame war. I had to block the homophobic stranger and delete a dozen or so angry and hurtful comments that had turned our loving announcement into a contentious debate about our right to love each other and celebrate our longtime relationship. Suddenly the wedding became more important. How dare these people pop into a stranger’s happy announcement just to crap all over their joy? Why would they do that? Didn’t their parents teach them that if you can’t say something nice, you don’t say anything at all? We were angry and wounded. Then I noticed something that had escaped me before: not one single relative of mine — and I’m “friends” with brothers, sisters, cousins, nieces and nephews on Facebook — had “liked” my status. No one commented to leave congratulations. They said nothing at all — and their silence was deafening. As America’s understanding and acceptance of LGBT people has grown, it’s easy to forget those who still struggle with unsupportive families. Marriage equality has brought a deeper understanding to many people that “love is love” but not everyone has gotten the memo. Some folks still struggle with their prejudices. During the height of the AIDS crisis, when many gay men were denied by their families and were dying alone en masse, the term “family of choice” became the polite way of saying, “My family sucks, but my friends

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column mcnaught’s notes Don’t Let Life’s Shocks Keep You From its Delightful Surprises Brian McNaught As I remember the story, Noah Webster was caught by his wife making love to the maid. “I’m surprised,” she said angrily. “No,” he replied, being a well-known stickler for definitions, “I’m surprised by your entry. You’re shocked by my behavior.” To be surprised is to be startled, or taken unaware; to be shocked involves judgment. The first time I saw a bearded man in a dress was 40 years ago. There were four of them in what was called “Skag Drag” at the time. I was speaking on gay issues at the University of Michigan, and they walked in dramatically, sitting on the floor in front of me. I was startled by their entry, and I was shocked by their appearance. I had never seen hairy drag queens before, so it took a little while for me to sort through my thoughts on their gender expression. A handsome, young, bearded man just won a major European singing competition. I was surprised that he won, because of what he wore, but not shocked by his appearance. He sang in a dress. Apparently, some Russian men are so shocked by his appearance, and by the acclaim he received, that they are now shaving off their beards. They no longer consider facial hair a sign of masculinity. Shaving off their beards seems like a bit of an over reaction. It might have been easier had they decided to just not wear dresses. I watched the video clips of Conchita Wurst singing “Rise Like a Phoenix” in the Eurovision Song Contest, seen live by 170 million people. When not in drag, the Austrian singer’s name is Thomas Neuwirth. Neuwirth, who sees himself as a man, might have won the award without the golden dress, but wearing it allowed him to express herself more comfortably, and with enthusiasm. She did a beautiful job with the song. He should be very proud of himself. Having been exposed over the years to people such as Thomas/Conchita, whom I admire and love, I’m no longer shocked by the multiple ways people express their gender identities. Having a face to put on the issue of diversity in gender expression eliminated any fear or judgment I initially had. I don’t remember the first time I saw two men kiss in public, but I do recall sitting in the movie theater in 1982 watching “Making Love,” when Michael Ontkean kissed Harry Hamlin. Some members of the audience made loud sounds of disgust. They were shocked. I was surprised by their response; didn’t they know what the movie was about? Michael Douglas turned down the role played by Ontkean. So did William Hurt. Either


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they, or their agents, felt it was too risky for a straight actor to kiss another man. It was shocking. A few years later, Hurt won an Oscar for playing a transgender, gay man in prison in the film, “The Kiss of the Spider Woman.” And, more recently, Michael Douglas won an Emmy for his portrayal of flamboyantly gay musical icon Liberace. Sometimes, we get past the things that scare us, and the results are very rewarding. It takes time, exposure, and effort to go from being shocked to being surprised. There’s been some public gasps of disgust at the televised kiss that the football player Michael Sam gave his boyfriend Vito Cammisano. Sam had just been drafted by the St. Louis Rams and when he found out his first reaction was to embrace and kiss the man he’s in love with. It was clearly an emotional moment for him, especially as he became the first openly gay player to be drafted in the NFL. Although many people across the country were perhaps surprised by the kiss, they nevertheless cheered its display. However, there were also some people who were shocked by it, and who tweeted their disgust. The media reported that a couple of football players took great exception to the kiss, and a conservative Christian commentator urged that Sam and Cammisano undergo conversion therapy to turn them straight. No mention was made as to whether they could, or should, then grow beards.


illiam Hurt in ‘Kiss of the Spider Woman’


he Bearded Lady, Conchita Wurst


he kiss heard around the world, Michael Sam & his boyfriend

Signs of masculinity are in question. But kissing on the lips is forbidden by some, unless you’re from another country, like Russia, where bearded men kiss each other on the lips. I understand the experience of shock when we see something we’re not used to seeing. I remember bobbing as a youngster in the pool with a buxom friend of my mother. When her bathing suit top came off, I was shocked by the sight of her big breasts. I was also shocked when I first saw my grandma’s false teeth in a glass in the bathroom. I was shocked when I first heard of people sticking their tongues into each other’s mouths when they kissed. And when a teacher in high school held up a magazine that showed pictures of naked men, I lost my breath. There’s a lot going on in the world that is shocking to many of us. And much that is shocking is also frightening. I’m shocked by the speed with which polar ice caps are melting. I’m shocked when Buddhists kill Muslims, Muslims kill Christians, and Christians kill Jews, all with the alleged blessing of their chosen God. I’m no longer shocked by the sight of large breasts, false teeth, French kissing, or pictures of naked men. That’s because of exposure, time, and the will to grow. I suspect that many people who were shocked by Wurst’s gender-bending performance at the Eurovision competition, or by the sight of Sam kissing Cammisano, will, with time and more exposure, have lives that celebrate such

diversity. But they have to want to change. Some people, because of their religious beliefs, or their plain stubbornness, don’t want people like Wurst, Sam or Cammisano in their lives. They don’t want to lose their sense of shock at people they disapprove of. Many of these people will go to their graves being shocked by life. That doesn’t surprise me. I’m very grateful to the bearded men in dresses who shocked me 40 years ago, because they opened my world to Conchita Wurst. I celebrate her victory in the singing competition, and for putting a face on gender expression and diversity for the whole world to see. I’m very grateful to Michael Ontkean and Harry Hamlin for accepting roles in a movie in which they kissed romantically and sexually when doing so was shocking to the majority of people. They helped me to start kissing my male friends, gay and straight, on the lips, in public, with more confidence and pride, and to clap enthusiastically with appreciation when Sam and his boyfriend, Cammisano, kissed on ESPN. We choose to live our lives with delightful surprise or in constant shock. We create our heavens and our hells. From my experience, there can be no shock in heaven, here or in the improbable hereafter, except that which is caused by the awareness of one living thing’s cruelty to another living thing. That shouldn’t be surprising to anyone. Brian McNaught works with corporate executives globally, is the author of six books, and is featured in seven educational DVDs. He and his spouse Ray Struble live in Fort Lauderdale. Visit for more info. soflagaynews //

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letters to the editor Dear Jason: Kudos on the most recent issue of SFGN. You are definitely earning your salary. I am glad they have someone as skilled, competent, and community based as yourself to lead this publication. Thank you, Mr. Kent, and the entire staff for being such beacons of information, community leadership, community building, and breaking news. I am proud to be able to get your publication each week at Church of Our Savior in Boynton Beach (and also have it available for our congregants and members). I am also very grateful to all of you for providing us all with this most valuable community resource. I cannot wait until you grow statewide. Keep up the good work and God Bless you all for your service, passion, and leadership.


Deacon Ed kaczperski Church of Our Savior, MCC Boynton Beach Florida


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column mombian

Proud to be Proud As the march for equality continues, our stories are destined to be remembered Dana Rudolph

It’s Pride Month once again, which means that I am once again inspired to take stock of what I’m proud of this year. As always, my son tops the list. He’s finishing elementary school this month, which seems incredible, not because I ever doubted he’d do it, but because it seems just yesterday that I was taking him to kindergarten. He’s developing his own interests and talents and is almost as tall as I am now (not that that really takes much; any height he has comes from his donor). I’m also feeling proud at the moment because of the surge of marriage equality victories across the country — victories that relied heavily on arguments about the best interests of our children. It used to be that “Think of the children!” was an argument against marriage equality. Now that’s an argument for it. The judges in Arkansas, Idaho, Oregon, and Pennsylvania (just to mention the most recent rulings) all affirmed that children do just as well with same-sex parents as with differentsex ones. To deny same-sex couples the chance to have the protections and stability that marriage can provide for their children is not in the states’ best interest, they said. (I’d argue that we should provide children of same-sex parents with better protections outside of marriage as well, just as we do for children of different-sex parents born out of wedlock — but that’s a somewhat separate legal matter.) This brings us to another thing to be proud of: the 10th anniversary of marriage equality in Massachusetts, the first U.S. state to enact it. My son was born about a year before it happened, and I’m proud he represents the first generation to grow up knowing that samesex parents could get married somewhere, should they wish. Part of what has changed attitudes in our country is the growing presence of LGBT families in the media — drama and comedy as well as news media. That’s something of which we can all be proud. ABC’s “Modern Family,” which includes gay dads in its ensemble cast, is one of the most awarded comedy series of all time. Sister network ABC Family’s “The Fosters,” about two moms and their mix of biological, adopted, and foster kids, has won critical acclaim, including Television Academy Honors “for using the power of television to bring awareness to important social issues.” Even better, the show has garnered an avid audience of youth who follow the storylines of the teen characters. Both “The Fosters” and “Modern Family” aired the weddings of the parents this year. Season-ending weddings are a television trope; having season-ending weddings of same-sex


parents means we’ve arrived, at least in some pop-culture sense. I happen to believe that pop culture is a leading indicator for legal and political change, though, so that’s not a frivolous statement. Looking back as well as forward, I’m proud to be part of a long history of LGBT parents, which began decades before marriage equality was the driving part of the LGBT rights movement. It’s a history that is still being set down, in films like Debra Chasnoff’s “Choosing Children,” about the first generation of lesbians to become parents after coming out, and books like Daniel Winunwe Rivers’ “Radical Relations,” which charts the history of gay and lesbian parents since World War II. Our history roots us as we grow into the future. The National Park Service recently recognized this heritage when it announced a study to identify “places and events associated with the story of LGBT Americans for inclusion in the parks and programs of the agency.” I’m very excited about this, not only because my family and I are frequent visitors to the National Parks and Historic Sites, but because it places LGBT people firmly in the acknowledged course of our nation’s history. I’m reminded of the old saying (sometimes attributed to Winston Churchill) that “history is written by the victors.” We haven’t won quite yet, but things are looking hopeful. Our stories are still being told, and I’m very proud of all the bloggers who have shared their stories on Blogging for LGBTQ Families Day, an annual event I’ve been hosting at my blog for the past nine years. Participants have included LGBTQ parents, prospective parents, the childfree, our children, and allies. This year’s celebration just passed, and I invite you to stop by and read some of their posts. We tell our tales in many ways throughout the year, of course: on blogs, on the news, and in everyday conversations in workplaces, playgrounds, coffee shops, and supermarkets. I am proud to be a part of this telling and retelling, this iterative process of educating and building bridges. I’m even more proud, however, of the LGBT kids, children of LGBT parents, and allied youth who tell their stories every day in their schools and communities. They are the ones we are building the future for — but they are also shaping it themselves. I’m not quite sure what it will look like, but I’m guessing it will make us proud. Dana Rudolph is the founder and publisher of Mombian (, a GLAAD Media Award-winning blog and resource directory for LGBT parents.

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news feature

Father Knows Best

New website supports gay dads David-Elijah Nahmod Celebrate Father’s Day by visiting Gays With Kids, a website designed to help gay dads navigate fatherhood. Launched by real life married couple, dads Brian Rosenberg, 49, and Ferd van Gameren, 54, Gays With Kids serves as a resource guide, a place to network, to offer or seek advice, and to share stories. The website’s press release states that “the online community aims to normalize the experience of gay parenting,” which will include “in-depth reporting on topics of interest to gay dads, many of which are typically not covered in mainstream media. Gays With Kids also inspires a whole new generation of gay men who are interested in raising children.” Rosenberg and Gameren met in Boston in 1993. In 1999 they relocated to New York City, emigrating to Toronto in 2009 because they wanted to be legally married — Canada legalized gay marriage at the federal level in 2005. “We got married on June 20, 2013,” Rosenberg told SFGN by phone. “One week later, the Supreme Court threw out the Defense Of Marriage Act and Proposition 8 (California’s gay marriage ban).” He laughed at the irony of their timing. Though happily ensconced in Toronto at the moment, Rosenberg said that a return to the States wasn’t off the table. The couple has three children. Levi, their five-year-old son, was adopted. Twin fouryear-olds Ella and Sadie were conceived through surrogacy.

Brian explained why they started the site. “There was nothing out there about gay dads,” he said. “We are the first ones to help gay dads navigate parenthood from finding the path that makes sense to becoming dads to raising their kids.” Gays With Kids is now open for business. “Phase one is to build the largest community of gay dads blogging about their experiences,” Rosenberg said. “We’ve got fifteen bloggers on-site and should soon have five more. They’re telling their stories of how they became dads, how they’re raising their families, and their dayto-day experiences. We like to offer content which covers issues that are important for gay dads, but typically not addressed by mainstream media.” Site topics include networking with women in order to donate sperm, (Gays With Kids columnist David Dodge covers this topic) co-parenting, and being an HIV positive parent. “I’m one of the gay dads who’ve been positive since the 80s,” Rosenberg said. He pointed to a site link called Positively Dads, in which he and Gameren share their personal

journey toward fatherhood. Included is a great deal of information on how those with HIV can safely father their own children without transferring the virus to mother or child — it is possible. There’s also Family Spotlight, where gay families can share their photos and stories. “It’s really important to point out that no two gay dads look the same,” Rosenberg said. “The Family Spotlight Series shows the tremendous diversity of how are families came to be, where they live and what they look like. The more positive, loving adults that are in our children’s lives, the better.” Visit for more information.

More online resources for Gay Fathers: The Gay Dad Project is not just limited to kids/families with Gay Dads. It is a community for everyone to share when a parent comes out... You are not alone in your journey... HIM Magazine’s June issue is about “Daddies” online at 26

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For more information, call toll-free 1-877-777-7871 | TTY 711. To enroll in Clear Health Alliance, call Choice Counseling toll-free today at 1-877-771-3662 (866-467-4970 TDD) or go online to Clear Health Alliance is a Managed Care Plan with a Florida Medicaid contract. The benefit information provided is a brief summary, not a complete description of benefits. For more information contact Clear Health Alliance at 1-877-777-7871 (TTY:711). Limitations, co-payments, and restrictions may apply. Benefits, formulary, pharmacy network, premium and/ 14-CHA-SFGN-6/14 or co-payments/co-insurance may change. MMA updated May 2014.


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June 11, 2014 • • Vol. 4 Issue 2

More AIDS stories online!

Spirit World AIDS Day 2014 Think Positively! The

America’s HIV/AIDS News Source

SFGN’s Annual HIV/AIDS Issue

Graphic Design by Brendon Lies Contributors: Christiana Lilly • Denise Royal • Sean McShee • Ryan Dixon Nicole Wiesenthal • Terri Schlichenmeyer Edited by Jason Parsley soflagaynews //

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America’s HIV/AIDS News Source

HIV P osItIVe M exIcan

D enIeD a syluM 8 organizations are appealing the ruling Christiana Lilly Eight LGBT, immigration and HIV activist groups have come together to plead for the U.S. to not deport a gay, HIV positive Mexican man back to his home country. The Center for HIV Law and Policy joined the groups to write an amicus brief, Doe v. Holder, in support of providing the man (whose name was redacted) asylum for fear that he could be beaten, raped and killed when he returns to Mexico because of his sexual orientation and HIV status. “Before deporting someone to torture, courts should make nuanced decisions based on a review of all relevant factors,” said Ivan Espinoza-Madrigal, CHLP Legal Director, in a press release. “In this case, there has been no consideration at all of on-the-ground realities and attitudes about HIV.” Since 1994, immigration law in the U.S. has recognized HIV-positive and LGBT people as eligible for asylum. However, it’s not a sure thing. An immigration judge and the Board of Immigration Appeals denied asylum to the man, claiming that there has been progress for LGBT Mexicans. While strides have been made in the country, including the election of the first openly gay mayor in the city of Fresnillo last year, the writers of the amicus brief aren’t satisfied. According to the release, people with HIV and who are LGBT experience “police

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misconduct and government-sanctioned violence and brutality, to the denial of access to lifesaving medical care and treatment.” In 2007, a gay teacher attended a gay rights march wearing women’s clothing. He was attacked and lost his job. When he went to appeal his dismissal, he was beaten by police, arrested, and raped in jail, according to the State Department’s Human Rights Report for Mexico. The next year, a gay, HIV-positive man was killed after being tortured, beaten with rocks, and suffocated while his hands were tied behind his back, according to Edge Boston. A sign was left near his body, discovered on a dirt road, that read, “This is what happens to me for going around infecting people with AIDS.” In the amicus brief, the man seeking asylum knew he was gay from a young age and was beaten by his father for not acting “like a boy.” Until the age of 14, male cousins, an uncle, and a neighbor repeatedly raped and beat him for being gay. He became free from the abuse when he left at 14 to live in the U.S. with his mother. He was diagnosed HIV positive in 2012 and is on medications — medicines the advocacy groups say are harder to find in Mexico. He may be denied treatment because of anti-LGBT bias or even purposefully given the wrong medication, which has been reported.

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Photo courtesy of Brendon Lies.




America’s HIV/AIDS News Source

World AIDS Museum

Ready to Open in Wilton Manors Christiana Lilly Hanging from a wall of the World AIDS Museum is a large red, glittery ribbon, the symbol of the HIV/AIDS movement to rid the world of a disease that has taken the lives of more than 21 million people worldwide. But take a step closer, and on closer inspection, one can see it’s a ribbon made up of 417 medication bottles — 10 years worth of viramune and epzicom, HIV medication worth $333,600. Ed Sparan, a board member of the museum, made the piece two years ago as a toast to surviving 10 years of the disease. An artistic, theatrical type, he kept all his medication bottles and finally decided to turn it into a work of art. Sparan’s piece hangs inside the museum, tucked within Wilton Station in Wilton Manors, along with memorabilia, magazine covers, and a detailed history of the HIV/ AIDS epidemic — not just within the LGBT community, but men, women and children of all races and sexual identity. “We don’t want to make it a gay museum; it’s the World AIDS Museum,” Sparan said. The museum got its start two years ago by Steve Stagon, a mediator of HIV support group, Pozitive Attitudes. The concept of a museum started with smaller exhibits, until a generous donation allowed the project to become a full-fledged museum in Wilton Station. While it had a soft opening in May, with tours three days a week, it will officially open on December 2 with a gala at the Broward Center. “I’m so happy [the community] has embraced it so well,” Sparan said. Inside the museum is a detailed history of AIDS, from the early 1900s in Africa to its movement to the U.S. There are even some deaths from before the ‘80s that were later determined to be AIDS, including the death of a teenager in St. Louis in 1969. Throughout the history, documents tell visitors stories of AIDS becoming more than just a “gay disease.” Important moments documented

included “Dynasty” soap actor Rock Hudson, whose kiss with co-star Linda Evans rocked the boat since people still believed you could contract the disease from touching. Magic Johnson is also featured, and he attended the museum’s dedication in November 2013, the 22nd anniversary to the day when he announced he was HIV positive. The basketball player kindly left behind a signed jersey. One wall is covered with memorabilia from activists, including shirts, photographs of marches, and a piece of KKK graffiti reading “AIDS KILLS FAGS DEAD.” On another wall, media coverage of the AIDS epidemic is memorialized with countless magazine covers. The exhibits have left people in awe with what they’ve learned, and for others, it’s driven them to tears. An ongoing project that the museum has undertaken is creating a more modern version of the AIDS quilt, a sort of digital tapestry. Those who have HIV/AIDS or have been impacted by it are welcome to come into the museum for a taping of them talking about their experience, to then be compiled into a large online piece. “It’s an emotional experience, a historical experience,” Sparan says of walking through the museum. LGBT activists have made appointments to explore the museum, but also local school groups and non-LGBT groups who are yearning to learn more about the AIDS epidemic, and most importantly how profoundly it has impacted the local community: Miami-Dade and Broward counties hold the number one and two spots, respectively, in new HIV/AIDS infections nationally. “The face of AIDS is no longer a gay man,” Sparan said. The World AIDS Museum is located at 1201 NE 26th St., Suite 111 in Wilton Manors. To learn more or to participate in the digital tapestry project, visit WorldAIDSMuseum. com

Steve Stagon, left, president and cofounder, stands with Ed Sparan, right, board member, in front of the newly openedly Text World AIDS Museum. It had a soft opening in May and is currently open three days a week. (Photo by Christiana Lilly) The World AIDS Museum will be open four days a week; Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Friday from 4 to 8 p.m. soflagaynews //

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America’s HIV/AIDS News Source

JC inkx, CM onsoon ,C The




Star of RuPaul’s Drag Race is new spokesperson for at-home HIV test Denise Royal

Jinkx Monsoon is one busy drag queen! She’s a spokesperson for the at-home HIV test OraQuick, has just released a new album, is a working actress and just wrapped up appearances on RuPaul’s Drag Race. She won Season 5. We caught up recently to discuss all the goings on in her life. We started things off on a serious note. The business of HIV awareness. “I’ve always been a big advocate for knowing your HIV status. I used to teach safe sex classes. I just believe in having the safest sex you can. What’s wonderful about OraQuick is that a lot of people have anxiety about going to a doctor’s office. Other’s don’t live in a place where testing is readily available. That’s the wonderful thing about OraQuick. It’s the same test used in doctor’s offices and HIV clinics. It’s fast and simple to use, “ said Monsoon. It only takes a second to hear that Monsoon isn’t in this for the money. It’s clear she believes in the cause. “A lot of younger people don’t have the same AIDS awareness as people who grew up in the 80’s. Having this test readily available helps them take responsibility for their sexuality,” she told SFGN. Our next order of business was on a bit off a lighter note, so to speak – her new


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music. Monsoon’s new record is called, “The Inevitable Album.” “I call it a tribute album to jazz, theater and cabaret singers. I was inspired by the Divine Miss M by Bette Midler. When I think back on the album, artists used to [sing] without auto tune and synthesizers. I would describe it somewhere between Broadway vocals and torch singing,” she said. One of the album’s highlights is a collaboration with Fred Schneider of the B-52’s on a song called The Bacon Shake. “Fred Schneider is an idol of mine. It was an amazing process,” said Monsoon. When Monsoon isn’t talking safe sex or singing, she’s wearing a different hat: working actress. She’s appeared on the drama Blue Bloods on CBS opposite Donnie Wahlberg. At the end of the summer, she’s releasing a documentary called ‘Drag Becomes Him.’ The project was funded through Kickstarter. This multi-tasking multitalented artist will switch things up this summer by staying in one place. From June 27 to September 20, she’ll appear at The Art House in Provincetown as one half of “The Vaudevillians.” For more information about the documentary or the Provincetown appearance, check out



America’s HIV/AIDS News Source

Could Conversation be the Key s topping hiv?


Denise Royal The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention wants gay and bisexual men to start talking to stop AIDS with a new HIV/ AIDS awareness campaign. The talk that’s being encouraged includes conversations about HIV testing, HIV status, condom use and new options like medicines that prevent and treat HIV. In a statement to SFGN, the CDC said, “Stopping HIV among gay and bisexual men has been a top CDC priority since the epidemic began more than three decades ago. Through Act Against AIDS, we have launched targeted campaigns about HIV testing for African American and Latino gay and bisexual men, who are at the greatest risk for HIV infection. Additionally, there are now more prevention options available than ever before. Recognizing this and following the success of the targeted campaigns, Start Talking. Stop HIV. is a natural next step. We believe this campaign will inspire life-saving conversations that address the realities of today’s epidemic.” The campaign is designed to reach gay and bisexual men of all races in their everyday lives. Men who have sex with men, including those who inject drugs, account for more than half of the 1.1 million people living with HIV in the U.S. and approximately twothirds of all new HIV infections each year. The campaign encourages gay and bisexual men to talk to their partners about HIV risk and prevention strategies. Additionally, the campaign speaks to men in all types of relationships – from long-term partners to casual relationships. It offers advice that other guys have found useful in having talks that can be awkward. Don’t wait until the heat of the moment to start talking about HIV. It’s better to talk about it earlier rather than later— certainly before you have sex. Some men who are living with HIV have suggested that it helps to talk about their status earlier in the relationship rather than later. Disclosing you are HIV-positive after you’ve become close to someone can cause your partner to feel as though you have kept something important from him. If you’re looking for a way to start talking, show him this web page. Watch the

videos together, talk about the campaign and use it as a way to start the conversation. Approaching the conversation this way doesn’t make it sound like you don’t trust him, but rather you’ve been reading about it, heard about it, were talking to a friend who brought it up, etc., and because you care, you want to make sure you’re both protected. Don’t force it. Find the right time and place to have a conversation. You can schedule a time to talk or have spontaneous conversations in a setting where you are comfortable. Try scheduling regular check-ins, or ‘talkiversaries.’ The key to a healthy relationship is having an open dialogue throughout the relationship. It can be hard to find the right time to bring these things up. If you agree to schedule them in advance, no one has to wonder about the timing of the conversations. A conversation does not have to be face-toface. Whether you talk, type, or text what is important is that you start the conversation about HIV. All of this makes sense on paper, right?

But would it work in the real world? Twentytwo year old Ross doesn’t think so. “I think as a campaign it has its heart in the right place, and I agree that open communication is vital to a healthy relationship (physically and otherwise). However, the idea that all gay men would be open to this type of relationship (sexual or romantic) seems misguided and naive. If it were all just as easy as the men in the videos make it seem, this wouldn’t be a problem in the first place. In my opinion, the campaign comes across as optimistic, earnest and naive, especially because the subject matter is so heavy,” he said. But 25-year-old Ramon disagrees. “A lot of

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the time you go off of assumptions. Whether it’s just a hook up, or a real relationship. You’re afraid to ask, so you just assume your partner is OK. I love the working in these videos. Whether he’s the one or a one-night stand. The messages really spoke to me.” But he admits, talking is just the first step. “You have to be honest with your partner,” he said. For more information on the CDC’s this campaign other visit ActAgainstAIDS for more information website or on Facebook at StartTalkingHIV.

6.11.2014 SouthFloridaGayNews // // 5 soflagaynews / SouthFloridaGayNews / / 11.27.13 ///33



America’s HIV/AIDS News Source

Monthly news froM aids network


south florida

Sean McShee The South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN) held their monthly meeting on June 6. It functions in three ways: 1. To coordinate planning for the AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) and the non-medical components of Ryan White Care 2. To network and coordinate activities among HIV service providers, consumers, and the HIV infected/affected communities 3. To disseminate HIV information. Meetings are held monthly and newcomers are encouraged to attend and to join. Below is a report from that meeting. Ann Mercer presented data showing expenditures and participation in Ryan White Care (RWC) over the last year (April to March). Three components of RWC served the largest number of clients: 1. Non-Medical Case Management (5,195 clients) 2. Medical Transportation (1,270 clients); and 3) Medication Co-Pays (229 clients). At the end of April, the AIDS Drug Assistance

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Program (ADAP) had enrolled 4,144 clients, with 80 percent having a suppressed viral load. At the end of March 2014, however, 17,318 people in Broward were living with HIV infection. The 4,144 enrolled in ADAP represent about 24 percent of those 17,318 people living with HIV. This 24 percent refers to the HIV infected who rely on the public sector for HIV care; it does not include the unknown number who rely on the private sector. These figures, however, are consistent with estimates of low rate in Florida of the HIV infected taking HIV meds (36 percent). Bisiola Fortune-Evans presented on services for women and children. From January 2014 through April, the Ryan White Care programs for women and children observed 55 pregnancies, with 28 babies exposed to HIV, but none born infected with HIV. At this meeting, Latinos Salud (2330 Wilton Drive) joined SFAN as a member

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organization, and its representatives discussed their agency. It has three major components: 1. Somos, a group for 18-30 year olds 2. Juntos a group for people 25 and older 3. Linkage, services for people already infected with HIV. Latinos Salud also offers a life coaching program, English and Spanish classes, and free testing for HIV, syphilis, clap (gonorrhea), chlamydia, and hepatitis C. For more information call 954-765-6239 Mario DeSantis of Housing Opportunities for People with AIDS (HOPWA) reported that some funds are available for those veterans living with HIV, needing help with mortgages and rents. Interested veterans should call Pablo Calvo of the United Way at 954-308-9263. Representatives of Salix Pharmaceuticals presented on Fulyzaq (crofelemer) a new FDA approved anti-diarrhea medication, developed for people infected with HIV. According to Joey Wynn, the most common


reason people stop taking their HIV meds is diarrhea, a frequent side effect of HIV meds. The Drug Fulyzaq (Crofelemer) has worked well with HIV meds and showed few side effects. It reduced watery stools from a median of 17 per week to a median of 2 or less per week. One member said that some of her clients had had problems with the insurance purchased under the Affordable Care Act. Lisa Agate reported that under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), people with complex medical conditions such as HIV infection can still switch their plan, if their current plan fails to fit with their condition. If people infected with HIV are dissatisfied with their health insurance plan obtained under the ACA, they can contact Lisa Agate at 954-561-9681 ext. 1227. National HIV Testing Day will occur on June 27, 2014 Next Meeting: July 11, 2014 at 10 a.m. at the Holy Cross Healthplex, 1000 NE 56th Street (at Dixie), Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33334.



America’s HIV/AIDS News Source

AHF O pens n ew HIV C lInICs In

H OmesteAd


p ensACOlA

Nicole Wiesenthal The AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) opened two new healthcare centers in May in Homestead and Pensacola, bringing resources to those in need. The Homestead Healthcare Center, 925 NE 30 Terrace Suite 310, opened Thursday, May 22. While offering care for all area residents, this new location provides a unique opportunity for local HIV positive residents to receive quality, specialized healthcare, regardless of their ability to pay. The clinic, which is the closest care opportunity for uninsured HIV patients living in the Florida Keys, offers infectious disease care for anyone who is positive. “Homestead is an area that has been vastly underserved for quite some time, and

we have been eager to address their need for HIV care,” said Lydia Gresham, Deputy Bureau Chief for the Southern Bureau of AHF. “Far too often, HIV positive patients without insurance are left with few options when seeking treatment. We are excited to partner with local area AIDS service organizations to be a part of the solution.” AHF has partnered with infectious disease doctors in the area to make opening the new site possible, Gresham said. The clinic will be open Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., but will expand its hours as the client-base grows. “All AHF healthcare centers throughout Florida are funded in part via our pharmacy operations, support from Ryan White

programs, and contributions through events such as the Florida AIDS Walk,” said Mark Martin, Regional Director of Community Relations and Development at AHF. A new AHF Pensacola Healthcare Center, 4300 Bayou Blvd. Suite 337, includes a state-of-the-art pharmacy, large conference center, laboratory services and provides cutting-edge treatment and care five days a week. It also opened in May. The Pensacola Healthcare Center has partnered with Dr. Barbara Wade, who brings three experienced providers from her private practice to the new center. “We acquired an HIV practice that was in Pensacola for 25 years. For the first time in this area, there will be a total circle of

care for the community: a one-stop shop for all of their HIV care needs,” said Dawn Averill, Associate Director of Growth and Development at AHF. The pharmacy will be able to fill any prescription – not just those related to HIV. Free walk-in rapid HIV testing is also available on-site at the new center. It will also have extended hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays “which will hopefully accommodate people who have different work schedules,” Averill said. Both centers will make it easier for people who are HIV positive to receive the care and assistance they need. To learn more about the new healthcare centers (or to find the one nearest you), visit

d IxOn ' s d IArIes : t eACHIng w HIle H umpIng Ryan Dixon


My third major leather event of the year has yielded yet another rewarding and even sexy time for me. If you follow my Facebook page, you know that I wrote about hooking up with my first transgender man at the Cleveland Leather Annual Weekend. Last week while in Chicago for the 36th annual International Mister Leather competition, there was this cute guy working one of the booths next to the LeatherWerks one in the market. He would walk by now and then and I would say hello in passing while lusting after him the entire time. He finally stopped by on Monday and said hello and that he was looking to buy something. After discovering he liked sexually (it didn’t take that much pun intended) we started looking at some toys. The price point was a little higher than what he wanted to spend. I jokingly offered up myself as an alternate to which he responded, “When is your break?” I told him to be back at the booth at 1 p.m. and we’ll go back to my room. After he walked away, I remembered that I forgotten

to disclose my HIV status to him. I don’t like doing it after we start making out and then I’m like, ‘Oh, hey…by the way.’ I texted him that I’m HIV positive and that we’d have to play safe. The conversation that followed turned into a teachable moment for myself. He admitted to me that he didn’t really understand what I had said and didn’t know what we could do sex wise. He said he found me attractive and still wanted to “mess around” but didn’t know what that all could entail. I forewent trying to explain what being undetectable means and went with just telling him that I’ll wear a condom and pull out as well if he’s uncomfortable. He replied that he always uses condoms but he’s never had sex with a positive person. That’s the opening I needed. We’re standing naked in front of my bed as he said that. I put my hand on his shoulder and replied, “Not that you know of.” I sat him down and told him about an article I wrote for SFGN in December of 2012 titled, “Everyone Has AIDS.” The point that I wanted to drive home in that article is that just because a person says their negative

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doesn’t mean you should throw all faith and trust into them. He looked at me for a second, not saying a word. I could tell things in his head were turning but I could also tell he wasn’t comfortable enough to have sex with me. I popped the age old question that got things moving forward. “What are you into,” I asked. He quickly told what he liked…and needless to say, we had plenty of fun. But if never got as far fucking. We both had a great time. In the shower, he thanked me for being patient with him and not just ditching him after he wouldn’t bottom. I said that I hope all of you take away from this story: “You know, it’s not always about fucking.” Ryan Dixon, the former Assistant Online News Editor for SFGN, is the Interactive Marketing Coordinator for LeatherWerks in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. LeatherWerks is the South East’s largest leather and fetish shop catered toward gay men.

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America’s HIV/AIDS News Source

‘B ody C ounts ’ A Memoir of Politics, Sex, AIDS, and Survival

by Sean Strub c.2014, Scribner $30.00 / $34.99 Canada 420 pages Terri Schlichenmeyer You didn’t want to look. When you bought the ticket, you knew the movie was going to be scary, but you had to see it for yourself. Kind of. Peeking between your fingers. You couldn’t look… but you couldn’t look away, either. In the early 1980s, when AIDS was barely understood, Sean Strub decided something similar: he’s gay and had engaged in risky behavior, but he didn’t want to be tested. In his book “Body Counts,” he writes about HIV, the U.S. House and Senate, and the altered course of his life. At a time when most kids want to be cowboys or ballerinas, Strub wanted to be a politician. He was obsessed with politics and, by time he moved to Washington to work as an elevator operator in the Capital, he was also fixated on losing his virginity. For years, Strub had hoped his attraction to men was “a phase that might pass.” It was 1976, and being gay was scary for a smalltown Iowa City boy. He wasn’t even sure if sex between men was possible but after he moved to Washington and then to New York, it didn’t take long to find out. “If Washington was a staging area for my life,” Strub said, “New York was the destination.” Being a twenty-something gay man in the Big Apple was exciting and liberating. Strub found a thriving, politically strong LGBT community, immersed himself in activism, and discovered gay bars, bath houses, and an abundance of available men with whom he “was playing catch-up sexually…” By the fall of 1980, Strub had been treated


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for STDs, hepatitis B, and “a mysterious swelling” of his lymph nodes. Quiet, urgent reports of the death of “a handful of gay men” began surfacing months later, and that scared him but he was told that his immune system was strong, that he probably didn’t have AIDS. Some time later, however, after contracting shingles, Strub was tested. The man he’d fallen in love with, Michael, was “matter-offact” when the results came back positive, but the diagnosis of “AIDS-related complex” was a catalyst for Strub to settle “into my first extended period of monogamy, or close to it.” But at that point, for Michael, it was too late. As memoirs go, this is definitely a different kind of animal. Though it begins with Washington goingson and inner-circle politics (and though it visits that circle often), “Body Counts” ultimately becomes more of a coming of age coming out that surely will resonate with gay men who remember the post-Stonewall, preAIDS years; it’s wrapped in tales of the infancy of LGBT activism. What will keep readers rapt, though, are the horrifying jewels of this book: author Strub’s howl-of-grief memories of the earliest of the AIDS epidemic; of dying friends; of visiting a hospital – not to see anyone specifically, but because he knew there’d be someone there he’d know. Strub leaves such images scattered here like potholes in springtime, and they’ll stick with you for a long time. For sure, those stories make “Body Counts” worth a look.


“What’s an important HIV-related story that should be noted?”

“Speak OUT” is a new weekly feature in SFGN, which is giving a voice to South Florida’s LGBT leaders. This week we asked them for their thoughts on an important HIV-related news story. Below are some of their answers: I was brought to tears [recently] as I heard the testimonial of an African-American straight father of two small boys who was graduating from our 18-week LIFE Program for people living with HIV/AIDS. Before the program he wanted to die; he couldn’t find support; had no one [to] discuss his diagnosis with; and was filled with judgment and prejudice toward gay people. Through the relationships he made week-to-week with other participants in the program, he changed his thinking, improved his health, and embraced with tears the other men in the program. “My whole life they had taught me wrong,” he confessed. “We’re all just alike. These men are my inspiration.” — Robert Boo, CEO of the Pride Center at Equality Park On May 30, 2014, Republican Governor Terry Branstad signed into law (HIV Transmission Bill) an act related to the criminal transmission of contagious diseases, which focuses on HIV. The passage of this bill is a huge win for Iowa HIV “decriminalization” advocates. My opinion is it is a balanced piece of legislation supported by many in the medical field as well as AIDS organizations, including AIDS Healthcare Foundation. It paves the way for future bills to be passed in other states. — Jason King, Advocacy and Legislative Affairs Manager in AIDS Healthcare Foundation’s southern region HIV treatment has advanced in ways unimaginable just ten years ago. Prevention efforts have also evolved to include the most well tested behavioral interventions and pre-exposure prophylaxis. Sadly despite these amazing victories, HIV/AIDS remains amongst the top ten causes of death worldwide. Locally South Florida now leads the nation in new HIV cases. As the co-chair of the Board of Directors at Care Resource, I see the impacts of HIV/AIDS profoundly in the lives of countless people in our community. Ultimately efforts must continue to focus on vaccination and cure as well as long-term treatment. — George Castrataro, noted attorney and LGBT activist For members of the sexually active gay community, getting tested is essential. However sometimes the fear of knowing is almost as great as the fear of not knowing. With South Florida now ranking the highest in new HIV transmissions in the country, it’s important now more than ever to get tested and get educated. New infection rates may be high but support and treatment options have never been higher or more effective. Don’t be afraid to get tested and don’t be afraid to start treatment. — A.J. Alegria, President of Impulse Group — Fort Lauderdale Visit to see more of this week’s responses. Send an Email to if you know of a LGBT community leader that should be or wants to be a part of this list. soflagaynews //

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lifestyle history This Week in Gay History June 11 - June 17


ishop John Atherton was sentenced to death by hanging because John Child accused him of sodomy and fornicating with him.

June 11, 2010 — Iceland’s Parliament Approves Gay Marriage

June 15, 1884 — Grand Duke Segei Alexandrovich Married a Woman

June 12, 2003 — European Court of Human Rights Rules in Favor of Trans Woman

June 16, 1640 — Bishop Accused of Sodomy

Iceland’s Althing passes a gender-neutral He weds Princess Elizabeth of Hesse definition of marriage 49-0, and becomes the (UK) who takes the name Grand Duchess ninth country in the world to legalize same- Elizabeth Feodorovna of Russia. It is rumored sex marriage. that Alexandrovich was gay. The couple had no children.

The court rules in favor of Van Kück, a German transsexual woman whose insurance company denied her reimbursement for gender reassignment surgery as well as hormone replacement therapy. The legal arguments relate to the Articles 6 and 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

June 13, 1994 — Gay Man and Lesbian Receive MacArthur Genius Grants

Bill T. Jones, an African-American dancerchoreographer, and Adrienne Rich, a Jewish poet and essayist, receive MacArthur Foundation Fellowships in recognition of their bodies of creative work.

June 14, 1519 — Friar Luis Castelloli Says Plague Came as God’s Wrath for Sodomy

Incensed by the friar’s sermon, a mob hunts down four men who are suspected of sodomy. They are burned the next month.


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John Child accused Bishop John Atherton of “fornication and adultery, and claimed to have committed sodomy with him.” Atherton was later convicted and sentenced to death by hanging.

June 17, 1968 — Wall Street Journal Article on Gays Published

The article is titled, “U.S. Homosexuals Gain in Trying to Persuade Society to Accept Them.” The country’s parliament passes a bill to let foreign persons in same-sex relationships with San Marino citizens stay in the country. The bill passes 33-20. Michele Pazzini of a San Manino LGBT association says, “This is a little step towards the full recognition of same-sex couples.” All of the information above has been reprinted with permission from Quist, an LGBT mobile history app that can be found on iOS and Android devices. Visit QuistApp. com for more information. The app was created by Sarah Prager and launched in July of 2013.

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Special Advertising Section

Take Dad out for a great meal this Father’s Day! SFGN Staff With a hand-crafted cocktail paired with a 28-day aged Certified Angus Beef steak, the only time you’ll be disappointed during your J. Mark’s experience is when you don’t save room for dessert. Whether you sit in the dining room, grab a seat in the lounge, or opt for a patio spot, J. Mark’s in Fort Lauderdale looks and feels comfortable and welcoming. Start off your meal with one of the restaurant’s signature drinks like the J. Mark’s Mojito — Malibu and Bacardi rums, fresh muddled lime, mint, simple syrup and house-made limeade in a sugar-rimmed glass. Be sure to begin your meal with one of J. Mark’s signature appetizers, including guest favorites like the Jamaican grilled wings — six jumbo chicken wings tossed in a mix of Jamaican spices and grilled, not fried, to a crispy golden perfection. You can also enjoy the calamari — lightly battered and fried, and served with not one but three housemade sauces: Marinara, basil pesto and garlic aioli. While J. Mark’s has many greats, it’s hard to top the succulent steaks. Certified Angus Beef ensures the highest quality of meat, with everything from aged prime rib to the classic New York strip. But don’t ignore the Hawaiian rib-eye — marinated in a soy pineapple marinade for 48 hours. Fish lovers can rejoice as well! With a fresh catch featured every day, look out for a miso-


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glazed Chilean sea bass on the weekends or opt for the lemon-herb swordfish — lightly seasoned and grilled to perfection. Don’t forget to make time for the happy hour, 2-6 p.m. daily, featuring half-off specialty cocktails like the J. Mark’s Mojito. During weekend brunch, sip on $3 Bloody Marys and Mimosas. While you’re sure to fill up from appetizers and entrees, be sure to save room for dessert. J. Mark’s serves up the best key lime pie you’ll ever taste, made in-house with their own graham cracker-pecan crust. For the indulger, try the red velvet cake, made by local Fort Lauderdale bakery Sweeter Days Bake Shop: Four layers of cake in between thick spreads of cream cheese frosting. The 7-layer homemade carrot cake is also a big guest favorite. For private parties and intimate events, inquire about the large outdoor patio — great for everything from business meetings to birthdays. With J. Mark’s extensive cocktail menu, signature steaks, and delicious desserts, there’s nothing stopping you from your new favorite dining experience.

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advertorial Financial Focus

What can vacations teach you about investing? Darcy Beeman Summer is almost here — which means it’s officially vacation season. You may be looking forward to “getting away from it all,” but, as you know, vacations actually require a fair amount of planning. And it might surprise you to learn that some of the efforts required for successful vacations can impart some valuable lessons in other areas of your life — such as investing. Here are some vacation-related moves that you may want to transfer to the investment and financial arenas: • Secure your home. If you’re going on vacation for a week or so, you may need to take some steps to safeguard your home: stopping your mail and newspaper, putting on a timer to turn on lights, alerting your neighbors that you’ll be out of town, and so on. But while it’s important to secure your home today, you will also want to help ensure it will be there for your family in the future, should anything happen to you. That’s why you’ll want to maintain adequate life and disability insurance. • Know your route. If you are driving to your vacation destination, you will want to plan your route beforehand, so that you can avoid time-consuming delays and detours. And to reach your financial goals, such as a comfortable retirement, you will also want to chart your course — by creating an investment strategy that is designed to help you work towards those goals based on your specific risk tolerance,

investment preferences and time horizon. • Keep enough gas in the tank. As you set out on a road trip, you need a full tank of gas in your car, and you’ll have to keep refueling along the way. And to “go the distance” in pursuing your financial goals, you will need to have sufficient “fuel” in the form of investments with reasonable growth potential. Without a reasonable amount of growth-oriented vehicles in your portfolio, you could lose ground to inflation and potentially fall short of your objectives — so, over time, you may need to “refuel” by reviewing your portfolio and rebalancing if necessary. • Protect yourself from getting burned. If your vacation plans include a stay at the beach, you’ll need to protect yourself and your family from the hot sun — so make sure you’re all using sunscreen. When you invest, you can also get “burned” if you are not careful — especially if you are inclined to chase after “hot” investments. By the time you hear about these so-called sizzlers, they may already be cooling off, and, even more importantly, they just might not be appropriate for your goals and risk tolerance. Instead of becoming a “heat-seeking” investor, focus your efforts on building a diversified array of quality investments appropriate for your needs. If you only own one type of financial asset, and a downturn hits that asset class, your portfolio could take a big hit. But by diversifying your holdings, you can help reduce the effects of volatility. Keep in mind, though, that diversification, by itself, can’t guarantee profits or protect against loss. As we’ve seen, some of the same principles that apply to creating a vacation may also be applicable to your investing habits. So, put these principles to work to enjoy a pleasant vacation — and a potentially rewarding investment experience. •

Darcy J. Beeman, CFP®, AAMS® Financial Advisor Edward Jones


717 SE 2 42

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soflagaynews //



Street – Suite 204, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301

PRIDE2014 Whether you listen to the Devil or the Angel on your shoulder this year... stay in touch with the latest latest in Pride event coverage, LGBT news and entertainment!

Poverello provides food & nutritional services to Broward County residents living with HIV/AIDS.

Take the Test Take Control The CDC estimates that 1 in 5 individuals infected with HIV don’t know it. Poverello, in partnership with The Pride Center at Equality Park HIV Testing Site, assists individuals in knowing their status and protecting their health and wellbeing. soflagaynews //

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6.11.2014 //43




J.W. Arnold




What’s the most fun you can have in 90 minutes? Well in Miami, that would be City Theatre’s Summer Shorts Festival, tonight through July 7 at the Arsht Center. Featuring a company of chameleon-like actors playing multiple characters in a series of 10 short plays. The 2014 line up boasts new works from Paul Rudnick (“Jeffrey,” “Addams Family Values”) and Deb Lacusta and Daniel Louis “Dan” Castellaneta, best known for their work on the animated television series, “The Simpsons.” For tickets and show times, go to





1 1



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2 0 1 4

W W W . S F G N . C O M


om Wahl, Elizabeth Dimon and Niki Fridh star in City Theatre’s Summer Shorts production of “Joshua Consumed an Unfortunate Pear,” a world premiere by Steve Yockey, one of 10 short plays featured in the annual short play festival at the Arsht Center.


The Gay and Lesbian Business Exchange (GLBX) of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Chamber of Commerce is hosting a fundraiser, ARTopia, tonight at Gallery One, 2670 E. Sunrise Blvd. in Fort Lauderdale. The event will showcase Broward County’s professional and cultural communities in a unique setting. Tickets are $50 for chamber members and $65 for non-members and includes admission, food and beverages and parking. VIP reception tickets are also available and include open bar, cocktail hour, reserved parking and art show preview. For tickets and information, go to



Photo: George Schiavone

6/14 SUN

Tired of giving the same clichéd Father’s Day Gifts? Sick of shopping for neckties and “grillmaster” aprons? This year, why not give dad the heartwarming gift of singing Zombies? Wait, what? That’s right – Cheap Trills, South Florida’s only musical improv troupe, is presenting “The Walking Dad: A Father’s Day Zombie Musical” tonight at 9 p.m. at Just The Funny Theater, 3119 Coral Way in Coral Gables. The show is completely improvised with suggestions from the audience. Much more dangerous than a zombie apocalypse! Tickets are $10-14 at


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6/15 MON

Unleash your inner Michaelangelo, Picasso or Matisse at the monthly men’s drawing class, tonight from 2 to 5 p.m. at Push Fitness, 1098 Floranada Rd. in Oakland Park. A nude model will be provided for long poses, but you’ll need to bring your own art supplies. Whether you prefer pencil, watercolors, oils or chalk, this is an opportunity to explore your creativity. Internationally recognized artists will be coaching participants. Cost is $25 in advance or $35 at the door. To reserve your spot, email or go to

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6/16 TUE

Turnabout only comes around once a year at the Alibi in Wilton Manors and tonight is the night. The staff at the popular Wilton Drive bar will have your head spinning as the hunky guys put on their best drag outfits and the ladies butch it up as drag kings and put on a crazy show on the stage. Part of the fun is just trying to figure which of your favorite bartenders is under that wig! Turnabout is a great way to kick off a week of Pride festivities. Proceeds benefit a number of community programs and charities supported by the Alibi.. For information, go to




To celebrate Pride Month, the Blue Door String Quartet is featuring a program by two well-known composers, Russian Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky (who is believed by many scholars to have been gay) and the openly gay American Samuel Barber, tonight at the Leiser Opera Center, 221 SW 3rd Ave. in Fort Lauderdale. They group will perform Tchaikovsky’s flowing String Quartet No. 2, followed by Barber’s String Quartet, which includes the original setting for his moving “Adagio for Strings.” A reception precedes the 7:30 p.m. concert. Tickets are $30 at

June 21st, 2014 | 6pm - 10pm Hilton Downtown 1601 Biscayne Boulevard, Miami

Morgan Stanley Business Person of the Year Award Craig Smith, Source Events

Regions Bank Business of the Year Award Office Depot Foundation

AT&T Non-Profit of the Year Award National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

TICKETS: $200 Individual or $2,000 Table of Ten RSVP: at; 305-673-4440 Sponsors:


STRIKE OUT HUNGER in the HIV Community

Register at as a: 


individual bowler

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donor to a bowler, team or the event Call 954.561.3663 for more information

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a&e film

column bil of rights cont’d from page 20 become my loving family. I’m not just stuck with them, I picked them.” This comforted many who were rejected and ostracized. I held one friend as he died and I’ll never forget his gratefulness that he wasn’t dying alone; he had someone to share his emotional journey with. My family of choice has rallied around my birth family’s lack of support. My best friend will stand in for my mom so that, as she said, “You have someone from your family standing with you.” They’ve come though for me just like the friends of those who were dying alone. This patchwork of people has made me realize how important the family of choice still is for many in our community.

Three days after the announcement was made and it had fallen out of most folk’s timelines, a distant cousin I haven’t seen or spoken with since I was 10 years old commented on the post. “Congrats Bil,” he said. It made me feel slightly better, but in the end it wasn’t necessary. After all, my family of choice had already greeted the news with joy and had even come to our defense when a stranger started attacking our love. For all the lack of support from my relatives, my family had come through again — by their own choice.

Musical Pokes Fun at Marriage Equality During Pride Week J.W. Arnold

“Little House on the Ferry” is a musical comedy about gay marriage on Fire Island. The show receives its South Florida premiere next week as part of the Broward Center’s Pride Series.

“Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it.” That old adage provides the premise for a musical comedy getting its South Florida premiere at the Broward Center, June 1315, to kick off Pride celebrations across the region. “Little House on the Ferry,” by Robert Gould and Robert Arbelo, a 2011 offBroadway hit, is set at the popular LGBT beach destination Fire Island on the day marriage equality becomes law in New York state. Thirty-something Randall is caught in a love triangle between his commitmentaverse attorney boyfriend and a young political activist with whom he falls in love at first sight. Throw in the veteran “house mother,” a local “steroid queen” and lots of Planter’s Punch, and the stage is set for a wacky weekend of sun, sand and gay marriage. Gould, 45, a former New York administrative judge and attorney who now resides in Fort Lauderdale, never dreamed he would write a hit musical. He grew up in New York and started vacationing on Fire Island 10 years ago. Gould fell in love with the relaxed summer atmosphere and knew it would be the perfect setting for some sort of story. “I was thinking of writing a novel or a play—like so many people do—but when I came up with a story about a deer that jumped the fence on Fire Island, I knew it had to be a musical. It’s Fire Island,” explained Gould via telephone. Without spoiling the plot, he warns the deer plays a key role in the somewhat autobiographical show.


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He wrote the book and lyrics and collaborated with Arbelo on the 15 songs and 10 reprises for the show. At first, he tried using parody lyrics to familiar tunes, but couldn’t get the performance rights. That setback actually set the stage for the final production. Gould admitted, “I don’t even play the piano, but luckily I have a ‘musical sense’ and we worked well together (on the songs).” He approached the songs like math problems, analyzing how each song related to the story and, likewise, how the story related to each of the songs. Bringing the production to the Broward Center has been a “dream come true,” said Gould. The off-Broadway theater where the show premiered was a “crap hole, a dump. Even the bathroom was horrible.” At the center, he is collaborating with professional actors, craftsmen and technicians in one of the leading facilities in the country. “This has been an overwhelming experience,” Gould said, now setting his sights on getting the show performed in other cities where marriage equality is still a hope. He is also working with composers on more songs and taking a few minutes to bask in the success of “Little House on the Ferry.” He concluded, “Now I really know what I want to do with my life… and it is a part of the show.” “Little House on the Ferry” will be presented in the Abdo New River Room at the Broward Center in Fort Lauderdale, Friday and Saturday, June 13 and 14 at 7 p.m., and Sunday, June 15 at 3 p.m. Tickets are $30 at

a&e music

Gay Men’s Choruses Sing with Pride at Upcoming Concerts J.W. Arnold


he Fort Lauderdale Gay Men’s Chorus, under the direction of Dr. Gary Keating

In addition to parties and parades, this year’s traditional pride festivities will also include concerts by the Fort Lauderdale Gay Men’s Chorus and the Gay Men’s Chorus of South Florida. The Fort Lauderdale Gay Men’s Chorus (FLGMC) will kick off the celebration on Saturday, June 14 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, June 15 at 7 p.m. with “A Ticket to Paradise,” a fun musical journey departing from the Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale, 1 Las Olas Ave. According to Keating, the program, complete with a script by program coordinator Tim Gibbs and the concert production committee, will take the audience to exotic destinations both near and far, along with the dramatics and camp audiences have come to expect. The concert program includes works commissioned by other gay men’s choruses, including San Francisco (“San Francisco, I’m Coming Home Again”) and the Colorado Chorale (“You Can’t Take the Color Out of Colorado,” written during the Amendment 2 battle). The latter piece points out, “You can’t take the K-Y from Kentucky….and you can’t have New York without Queens,” he said. With just 23 singers, FLGMC can devote more time to theatrical elements and the chorus even hired a choreographer to assist with the program. Keating, who formerly also conducted the Miami Gay Men’s Chorus, pointed out, “Our community is so fortunate to have so many outstanding local performing ensembles. We all do different things, but the important thing is the quality each brings to the stage. All three choruses could do Brahms’s Alto Rhapsody wonderfully and then turn around and use those musical skills to do a tribute to Judy Garland.” Tickets for the FLGMC concerts are $2540 at or by calling 954-8320060.

The following weekend, Friday, June 20 and Saturday, June 21 at 8 p.m., the Gay Men’s Chorus of South Florida, more than 150 voices strong, will present “Believe! Wishes Do Come True,” at the Sunshine Cathedral, 1480 SW 9th Ave. in Fort Lauderdale. The program, under the baton of artistic director Gordon Roberts, will feature the music of popular Disney cartoons, as well as other animated classics and show tunes. Roberts and assistant director Harold Dioquino arranged many of the songs for the chorus, nine-piece orchestra and guest soloist Kristen DiNonno Noffsinger. Together they will sing selections from Disney favorites “Mary Poppins,” “Snow White,” “Sleeping Beauty,” “The Lion King” and more recent films, including the hit, “Maleficent,” currently in theaters. Tropical Wave, the group’s select ensemble, will also take the stage. “Kristen is truly the perfect Disney princess,” Roberts said. “She is not only lovely, but has a soaring voice that is perfectly suited for so many of the songs.” One of the highlights for Pride, according to Roberts, will be a medley — with twists — on “Some Day My Prince Will Come,” “A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes” and “Once Upon a Dream.” To close the concert, the chorus will perform an arrangement of “It’s a Small World After All,” which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, and presented as a “theme and variations” as composed by a wide range of familiar classical composers. “It’s one of those songs you just can’t get out of your head,” Roberts explained, “but I think the audience will hear and appreciate it in a new way.” The Saturday performance is sold out, but general admission tickets are still available for the Friday concert for $35 at soflagaynews //

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Grab Your


‘Tickets to Paradise’

Under the direction of Dr. Gary Keating

Fort Lauderdale Gay Men’s Chorus Takes You on the Trip of a Lifetime

~ presents ~

A Smashing Finale to Their 28th Season

J Want to get away on the trip of a lifetime? The Fort Lauderdale Gay Men’s Chorus will be presenting its June concert “Ticket to Paradise,” a musical tour of the country. Join us as we hop around our great nation, stopping in your favorite lyrical places, from New York to San Francisco, from Miami to Chicago. This show will take you on a journey that you’re sure to enjoy.

Saturday, June 14 – 8pm & Sunday, June 15 – 7pm the muSeum of art, fort LauderdaLe Tickets are $40 Premium Seating and $25 General Admission. You can RSVP by visiting or by calling 954.832.0060.

For updated information on our concerts, events or joining our chorus, Funding for this organization is provided in part by the Broward County please visit our website or call 954.832.0060. Commissioners as recommended by the Broward Cultural Council.


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oin the Fort Lauderdale Gay Men’s Chorus as they take you on a musical tour of the country to conclude their 28th season.

The original Fort Lauderdale Gay Men’s Chorus wants to take you on a trip you won’t ever want to forget. You may do a bit of traveling to gay destinations, or to New York for shows that don’t make it to the Broward Center or the Parker, or to somewhere “up north” to see friends or family. But you may be feeling that there’s so much more to this great country that you’ve never seen. On the other hand, perhaps you have already seen most of the good ol’ U.S. of A., but the memories are getting faded and fuzzy, and they could do with some burnishing and refreshing. The problem is how to do – or pay for – an all-encompassing trip of that magnitude. Fret not! The original Fort Lauderdale Gay Men’s Chorus – the first and oldest gay chorus and performing arts organization in the state of Florida – solves the problem with the smashing finale to its 28th season. The Chorus, noted for its great sound, balance and blend, as well as for the entertaining showmanship incorporated into all its shows, will be your tour organizer on a musical trip around this great country of ours as it presents Ticket to Paradise. You’ll be whisked away in sound and imagination to some of the best vacation spots in the country. You’ll visit or revisit some of the most exciting cities in the U.S. You’ll go to quiet, refreshing places that you never thought of visiting. You’ll travel down the fabled Route 66. You’ll see wide open spaces, majestic purple mountains, and fruited plains – or at least plains with lots of fruits. (Heh.) And like Dorothy when she clicked her ruby slippers, you may take away a valuable lesson. It would be hard to find a better tour organizer for the trip than this group, under the direction of its founder, Dr. Gary Keating. Their holiday show, Holidays in Full Swing, was a smashing success, with professional musicians in the audience remarking on the exquisite sound. That was followed by their spring show, Totally Awesome – so well-received that at the end of its second night, the Chorus was still singing the last note of the final song when the entire audience jumped to their feet as they roared their appreciation. Ticket to Paradise promises to evoke similar reactions as it provides an equally entertaining and compelling experience. You can climb aboard at the Museum of Art, Fort Lauderdale, Saturday, June 14th, at 8 p.m. and Sunday, June 15th, at 7 p.m. Tickets at $25 General Admission and $40 Premium Seating, can be purchased, and information on chorus events and on joining the chorus can be found at, or by calling 954-832-0060. •


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he Arts Garage in Delray Beach brings the story of Johnny Cash told through an extensive collection of his music from June 20 - July 6.

Christiana Lilly BROWARD COUNTY broward county

* Judicial Candidate Forum for the Dolphin Democrats

June 11 at 7:30 p.m. at the Pride Center, 2040 N. Dixie Highway in Wilton Manors. All five Broward County judicial candidates will be joining the public panel to discuss issues that are important to our community. George Castrataro and Dean Trantalis will moderate. Drinks and food will be served at p.m. Visit

Happy Together Tour

June 11 at the Coral Springs Center for the Arts, 2855 Coral Springs Drive in Coral Springs. The tour celebrates its 30th anniversary with performances by members of The Turtles, Three Dog Night, Grand Funk Railroad, and more. Tickets $39.50 to $69.50. Call 954-344-5990 or visit

An Evening of Spirit with James Van Praagh

June 11 at 8 p.m. at the Parker Playhouse, 707 N.E. Eighth St. in Fort Lauderdale. Van Praagh bridges the gap between the living and the dead as he brings messages from beyond to the audience. Tickets $49.29 and $81.09. Call 954-462-0222 or visit

International Food & Comedy Festival

June 14 at 5 p.m. at War Memorial Auditorium, 800 NE Eighth St. in Fort Lauderdale. Sample food from around the world before a raucous night of laughs with international comedians. Tickets $29 to $87. Call 1-877-419-0502 or visit

* The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe

June 14 at 7 p.m. at the Broward Center, 201 SW Fifth Ave. in Fort Lauderdale. In this ballet, four children escape the WWII air raids by staying in the English countryside, where they enter the world of Narnia when they walk through a bedroom wardrobe. Tickets $25 to $40. Call 954-462-0222 or visit

* The Pride Inspirational Concert

June 18 from 7 to 9 p.m. at Hagen Park, 2020 Wilton Drive in Wilton Manors. Kick off Stonewall Pride with music from Shawn Thomas, Harlery Greene, Lynne Smith Madison, and Bishop S.F. Makalani-MaHee. Call 954-463-9005 or visit

Visiting Mr. Green

Through June 22 at the Soref JCC Complex, 6501 W. Sunrise Blvd. in Plantation. An elderly Jewish man in Manhattan has let himself and his apartment go to shambles after his wife passes away. Then, a young, gay corporate executive comes into his life for an unlikely friendship. Call 954-609-7153 or visit

Submitted Photo

The Pride

Through June 22 at Empire Stage, 1140 N. Flagler Drive in Fort Lauderdale. Oliver, Philip and Sylvia are in a love triangle that spans 50 years – with a pseudo-Nazi sex partner, gay aversion therapist, and a magazine editor thrown into the mix. Tickets $30. Call 954-519-2533 or visit PALM BEACH county palm beach

The Life

June 11 to July 27 at Delray Square Performing Arts, 4809 W. Atlantic Ave. in Delray Beach. Times Square in the 1980s comes to life with a hooker, Queen, her cocaineaddicted boyfriend, fellow streetwalkers, and other characters who have seen better days. Tickets $37.50. Call 561-880-0319 or visit

* Ring of Fire: The Johnny Cash Musical

June 20 to July 6 at Arts Garage, 180 NE First St. in Delray Beach. The life of Johnny Cash is told through his extensive collection of music that has people singing along to this day. Tickets $30 to $45. Call 561-450-6357 or visit

* Zorba!

June 20 to 29 at the Don & Ann Brown Theatre, 201 Clematis St. in West Palm Beach. Zorba the Greek teaches his young American friend, Niko, to embrace the little things in life as they travel to Crete. Tickets $40. Call 561-514-4042 or visit

Free Friday Concerts

Fridays at 7:30 p.m. at the Delray Beach Center for


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the Arts, 51 N. Swinton Ave. in Delray Beach. Enjoy live music from the comfort of your picnic blanket or lawn chair every week, for free! Call 561-243-7922 or visit MIAMI DADE county miami-dade

Summer Shorts

June 12 to July 6 at the Arsht Center, 1300 Biscayne Blvd. in Miami. A summer tradition at the theatre, a festival of theatrical shorts. Tickets $40. Call 305949-6722 or visit

Gidion’s Knot

Through June 15 at the South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center, 10950 SW 211st St. in Cutler Bay. When fifth grader Gidion is suspended from school, his mother confronts his teacher during a parent teacher conference and uncovers a world of bullying and the failing school system. Tickets $26 to $31. Call 786573-5300 or visit

Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike

Through June 15 at the GableStage, 1200 Anastasia Ave. in Coral Gables. Siblings living in Bucks County, Penn. get a visit from their movie star sister and her latest fling. Tickets $45 to $55. Call 305-446-1116 or visit

PAMM Outdoor Music Series

Third Thursdays at the Perez Art Museum Miami, 101 W. Flagler St. in Miami. Come out for live music from DJs and musicians by the bay. Drink specials available. Free with museum admission. Call 305-3753000 or visit


* Denotes New Listing

The Big Show

Fridays and Saturdays at 9 p.m. at Just the Funny Theater, 3119 Coral Way in Miami. A collection of comedy mixing the likes of improvisation and sketches. Tickets $12. Call 305-693-8669 or visit

Lion, the Witch and “The the Wardrobe” comes to the Broward Center

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SWINGING RICHARDS NOW HIRING Quality Male Dancers & Waiters. Full nudity/upscale club environment with great income potential. Please text (865)385-9568 or email photos/info to PERSONAL ASSISTANTS WANTED We are currently recruiting for Personal Assistants to organize and help. You must be fun, caring, and passionate about working as a personal assistant. Basic computer skills needed and must be good with organization. Salary/Weekly Rate: $582, Interested persons should contact for more info: COMPREHENSIVE AIDS PROGRAM The Comprehensive AIDS (CAP) Program of PBC is recruiting county wide (Belle Glade, Delray Beach, and WPB) 10-15 people who are HIV positive to become Peer Advocate Leaders (PALs) by completing the PAL training. For additional information and how to apply please visit: HIVServicesJobOpenings EOE/M,F/DFWP


$$$ MODELS NEEDED $$$ Wrestling Company in South Florida is seeking athletic models for planned video shoots in our new facility. Wrestling and/or performing experience is helpful but not necessary. Good pay. Contact us at for more information!

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WANT TO LEARN HOW TO PLAY THE PIANO? Learn from an experienced teacher. All levels and ages welcome. Learn to play classical, popular, jazz, or show tunes. Visit or call 954-826-9555 for more information.

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6/11/14 V5i24  

Happy Father's Gay / Spirit Issue

6/11/14 V5i24  

Happy Father's Gay / Spirit Issue