LGBTQ Event of the Week: LGBTQ Home for Hope’s Community Day

LGBTQ Home for Hope’s Community Day is Sunday, July 16th.

For hosting a charitable event that unites community and various identities, this week’s LGBTQ event of the week is the LGBTQ Home for Hope’s Community Day. This free charity event features a donation drive, barbecue, games and community building. The LGBTQ Home for Hope will be accepting donations such as cleaning supplies, food (fresh meats and vegetables, canned goods, breakfast, lunch and dinner items), toiletries, school/art supplies, hygiene items and much more. The event kicks off at 1 p.m. on Sunday, July 16th, at the LGBTQ Home for Hope, located at 2831 N. Hutchinson St. Donations. Read more »

LGBTQ Event of the Week: The 22nd Annual Philadelphia Alternative Prom

The 22nd Annual Philadelphia Alternative Prom is Friday, June 30th at the Arden Theatre.

For its inclusive celebration of youth, this week’s LGBTQ event of the week is the 22nd Annual Philadelphia Alternative Prom. Billed as the “longest consecutive-running prom of its kind in the country,” this event (for ages 14 to 20) aims to provide an affirming and welcoming space for LGBTQ youth and allies. This year’s theme is “Neon Lights” and encourages youth to come dressed in whatever they like and be their full authentic selves. The event kicks off at 7 p.m. on Saturday, June 30th, at Arden Theatre Company, 40 North 2nd Street. Community members are encouraged to purchase tickets to donate for youth who may not be able to afford the event on their own. Tickets. Read more »

LGBTQ Event of the Week: IBA’s 10th Anniversary Celebration

IBA's 10th Anniversary Celebration is Wednesday, May 10th.

IBA’s 10th Anniversary Celebration is Wednesday, May 10th.

For its celebratory spirit and expansive networking, this week’s LGBTQ event of the week is IBA’s 10th Anniversary Celebration. Enjoy an evening that plans to “celebrate and recognize the accomplishments of the local LGBT business.” IBA will be presenting their seventh annual PNC Bank $10,000 LGBT Business Award and honoring Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jonathan Capehart. Guests can expect an endless dinner buffet and top-shelf open bar while mingling with members of the LGBT and business communities, local and state government officials, and leaders from the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce. The event kicks off at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, May 10th at The Down Town Club, located at 600 Chestnut Street. Tickets are available online. Read more »

GALAEI Announces Its 2017 DARLA Awardees

DARLA Awards ceremony is Friday, May 12th.

The DARLA Awards ceremony is Friday, May 12th.

GALAEI, a queer Latin@ social justice organization, will celebrate influential LGBTQ leaders at the eighth annual David Acosta Revolutionary Leadership Awards (DARLA). This year’s theme — “Celebrating Queer Latinx Resistance” — highlights how the local queer Latinx community has shown resistance in this adverse political climate.

“With a resurgence of new activists and social justice supporters focused on addressing racist and discriminatory policies from local, state, and federal institutions that have arisen, GALAEI has remained committed to ensuring our work focuses on advocating for our community,” said GALAEI executive director Nikki Lopez. “DARLA honorees exemplify those who have cultivated revolutionary change in the LGBTQ and Latinx communities through activism, education, or a continued commitment to empowering GALAEI.” Read more »

DVLF Announces Its 2017 Heroes Awardees

DVLF Heroes is on Sunday, April 9th at Hotel Monaco at 433 Chestnut St.

DVLF Heroes 2017 takes place on Sunday, April 9th, at Hotel Monaco.

In its 11th year, DVLF Heroes celebrates people whose deeds positively affect the LGBTQ community. “Reading through the community’s submitted nominations, I was struck by all the incredible work by individuals and organizations to build and strengthen our community,” said Samantha Giusti, DVLF’s executive director. “This year’s slate of awardees have been leaders in securing the rights, meeting the needs, and celebrating the lives of LGBTQ people.” Read more »

Christopher Collins Remembered

Chris Collins' funeral will be on Tuesday, January 10th.

Chris Collins’ funeral will be on Tuesday, January 10th.

Last week, Chris Collins, a well-known LGBTQ community advocate, died suddenly at age 37.

Francesca Williams and Louie A. Ortiz-Fonseca, two community members who were very close to Collins, sent G Philly this remembrance of his life, impact, and legacy: Read more »

LGBTQ&A: Nikki Lopez

Nikki Lopez. Photograph by Amy Perez

Nikki Lopez. Photograph by Amy Perez

Nikki Lopez is a Latinx queer activist who was recently been appointed the new executive director of GALAEI — A Queer Latin@ Social Justice Organization. We recently chatted with the community leader about her new goals and plans for GALAEI and her perspective on the current discourse surrounding racism in the Gayborhood.

Tell us a little about yourself.
Well, I was born in Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico, and moved to Daytona Beach, Florida, as a baby. My mother was a single mom who raised three kids all by herself, in a small town called Holly Hilly. She arrived not knowing any English, and for the most part was alone. I learned a lot about perseverance and resilience from her. Read more »

Latinx Queer Community Leaders Air Concerns Over Philly4Pulse

Gayborhood sign

On Thursday, July 21st, the Gayborhood’s most popular bars are sponsoring a charity event to support the victims of the tragic Pulse Nightclub shootings in Orlando. Philly4Pulse promises to feature local celebrities tending bar, dance parties, drag, Quizzo, karaoke, and more as a way “to bring our community together.” However, some leaders from the Latinx queer community feel that their constituencies have been left out.

According to press releases and interviews, the Philly4Pulse organizing committee began working on the event as early as June 14th. But representatives of both GALAEI and the Gran Varones, two well-known local Latinx queer organizations, say they were invited to participate only a week ago. Read more »

LOCAL NEWS: Wawa Welcome America Parade to Have First LGBT Float

Wawa Welcome America logo

The LGBT float for the Wawa Welcome Forth of July Parade will include Mummers, local drag queens, and community leaders.

It’s been roughly 10 years since the LGBTQ community began to be openly included in the annual Wawa Welcome America Fourth of July Parade, but this year we will get our own float. Plans for the inclusion of a float came from Under the Sun Productions, which has worked with Wawa Welcome America in the past. But the most surprising support came from the Mummers — yes, the group that back in January offended a good chunk of the community. “This July 4, it’s even more important that not only do we have the Mummers close by, but that we celebrate inclusion, forgiveness and moving forward together as Philadelphians,” said openly gay Wawa Welcome America head Jeff Guaracino. Although Wawa Welcome America had a 50th Anniversary commemorative float reflecting on the LGBT civil rights movement last year, this is the first official designated float for the community expected to run annually. The float will be included in the “gay section” of the parade, which will feature local drag queen Brittany Lynn, the Lambda Car Club, Hegeman String Band and LGBT members of the networking club Rainbow Alliance. The Wawa Welcome America events are scheduled to run this year from June 27th through July 4th. Read more »

LOCAL NEWS: Republican City Councilman Proposes Bill to Aid LGBT Small Businesses

City Council Entrance

Councilman David Oh proposed a bill that will consider LGBT companies as another category of disadvantaged business enterprises to help give them a better shot at landing city contracts.

Republican Councilman David Oh introduced Bill 160152 last week as a method of “finding ways to expand access and encourage local small business owners of all minority groups to apply to be prioritized for city contracts.” With the LGBT Non-Discrimination Bill being blocked by Republicans at the state level despite increasing public support, there is currently no guarantee that local LGBT businesses will be able to receive proper consideration for city contracts. The bill would also expand protection to those who have experienced “religious prejudice.” Nationally, progress for LGBT businesses and owners has not matched the rapid policy advancements for their individual rights. Read more »

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