PHOTO BY DYANA BAGBY

PO Box 77401 | Atlanta, GA 30357 404-815-6941 | www.thegavoice.com Editor: Laura Douglas-Brown lbrown@thegavoice.com Deputy Editor: Dyana Bagby dbagby@thegavoice.com Web Manager: Ryan Watkins rwatkins@thegavoice.com Art Director: Bo Shell bshell@thegavoice.com

THE GEORGIA VOICE EDITORIAL

IN THIS ISSUE
FEATURED STORY

06.07.13

STONEWALL MONTH

4 | East Point Possums headline month of Pride activities. 6 | Events: Cirque de Nuit, LGBT film screenings. 7 | Events: Out in the Stands, Augusta Pride, Pride Run. 8 | Events: Pet Blessing, Pride Seder, Evening for Equality. 11 | Packed calendar as Atlanta marks National LGBT Pride Month.

Melissa Carter, Jim Farmer, Shannon Hames, Topher Payne, Matt Schafer, Steve Warren, Ryan Lee

CONTRIBUTORS

NEWS

Publisher: Christina Cash ccash@thegavoice.com Associate Publisher: Tim Boyd tboyd@thegavoice.com Sales Manager: Marshall Graham mgraham@thegavoice.com Sales Executive: Anne Clarke The Clarke Agency aclarke@thegavoice.com National Advertising: Rivendell Media, 908-232-2021 sales@rivendellmedia.com Richard Eldredge, Sandy Malcolm, Lynn Pasqualetti, Robert Pullen

BUSINESS

25 | JOAN BAEZ TALKS INDIGO GIRLS AND UPCOMING ATL SHOW

13 | Attempt to de-sex Cheshire Bridge could mean challenger for gay councilman. 15 | Team Friendly launches t-shirt competition to combat HIV stigma. 17 | Supreme Court countdown: Rally planned as marriage equality rulings near. 18 | BRIEFS: No ‘I Do’ for Illinois, trans Navy Seal comes out, and more.

OUTSPOKEN
FRIENDS & FOES IN THEIR OWN WORDS

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FINE PRINT

— President Barack Obama, officially proclaiming June as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month (White House, May 31)

“I’ve been on this huge journey to figure out my life, and now I am back here I think where I am supposed to be.”
— Professional soccer player Robbie Rogers in a May 26 postgame press conference after his debut with the LA Galaxy made him the first openly gay athlete to compete in U.S. men’s professional team sports. Rogers, a former national team player, came out in April and announced his retirement. (YouTube, May 27)

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“The LGBT community has written a proud chapter in this fundamentally American story by reminding us that integrity and respect remain cornerstones of our military and civilian culture.”
— Department of Defense LGBT Pride Month memorandum (SLDN.org, May 31)

Screen capture via YouTube

“This whole thing has been a bit surreal for us because we have been raised to believe that love is love. We never realized that our happiness and openness would inspire so many individuals.”
— Brad Taylor and Dylan Meehan in a statement released after the seniors were voted “Cutest Couple” at New York’s Carmel High. The story went viral after a classmate posted it to Tumblr. (Huffington Post, June 1)

Photo via Tumblr

“This year, we celebrate LGBT Pride Month at a moment of great hope and progress, recognizing that more needs to be done. Support for LGBT equality is growing, led by a generation which understands that, in the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., ‘injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.’”

25 | Folk legend Joan Baez on performing with Indigo Girls and kissing a girl. 27 | EVENTS: Peach Party brings circuit DJs to Atlanta. 31 | THEATER: ‘The Boy and the Pink Bear’ and ‘The Velveteen Rabbit’ 33 | BRIEFS: Ellen DeGeneres, Amanda Bynes, Lauryn Hill and more. 34 | CALENDAR

COLUMNISTS

37 | THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID: What Melissa Carter hears when the mic is off. 39 | DOMESTICALLY DISTURBED: Topher Payne loves his labels.

4 | GA VOICE

06.07.13

STONEWALL MONTH

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Photos by Dyana Bagby

Armorettes

PLAYING
POSSUMS
Possums have raised thousands of dollars for organizations including Atlanta Pride, the Phillip Rush Center and the MISTER project of Positive Impact. East Point Mayor Earnestine Pittman, who has a lesbian daughter, said she supports the show 100 percent and notes it is the second largest event in the city. Only the city’s Fourth of July celebration brings out a slightly larger crowd. “I’ve gone to one show and I enjoyed it,” Pittman said. “The city has a very diverse population and I know [the show] has been very profitable for the charity it supports and is well known.” Pittman said the fact the Possums show brings people “from everywhere” to East Point gives the city a chance to showcase its pride. “People may think because we are a small city we are not welcoming. But we appreciate diversity in our city, whether it’s race, religion, sexual orientation — it doesn’t make any difference,” she said.

East Point Villagers

DETAILS

WWW.EASTPOINTPOSSUMS.COM

East Point Possums Show June 15, 8-11 p.m. on the Commons in East Point

Know before you go:
• Show is from 8-11 p.m. but organizers say get there early because the Commons area gets crowded quickly. • The show is free, but all donations and sales go to benefit Lost-n-Found Youth, which helps homeless LGBT young people. • Need GPS to get there? The show is held in the Commons in downtown East Point, across the street from East Point Law Enforcement Center located at 2727 East Point St., East Point, GA 30344.

Rick Westbrook

Annual East Point drag show highlights Stonewall Month
worked behind the scenes during the early years of the Possums show, a role with which they were more comfortable. Chuck Jenkins asked for several years for them to put together a number but Towne said they always declined. “Then when he got really, really sick, he sent a message via Rick [Westbrook] that he’d like us to do a number. He was dying so of course we could not say no. We thought it would be a quick little number,” Merritt said. “And we were so grateful we did because Chuck died four days later. And that’s why we still do it.” That first number, performed in 2004, was a simple routine to “YMCA” by the Village People — hence the group’s name. “This was in the days when the stage was a couple of risers on cinder blocks in a tiny parking lot and the backdrop was an empty Uhaul truck,” Towne said. Since that time, the East Point Villagers have gotten quite good and plan their own choreography, make their own costumes and now perform to medleys of pop favorites from CeeLo Green to “Glee.” This year, the Villagers have been practicing hard and promise another signature medley that will have people dancing and donating as well as possibly shedding a tear, Towne said.

By DYANA BAGBY dbagby@thegavoice.com Some 3,000 people are expected to flock to downtown East Point on June 15 for the annual East Point Possums Show, where they will drink gallons of Possum Punch, watch more than 25 drag performances and stuff dollar bills into sweaty, ahem, places to raise money to help LGBTQ homeless youth. This year, proceeds from the fundraiser benefit Lost-n-Found Youth, which recently announced a $1 million capital campaign to fund new resources as well as a new shelter. “It just keeps getting bigger and bigger each year,” said Rick Westbrook, matriarch of the Possums as well as executive director of Lostn-Found. “Every dollar that comes to the stage, every sale that is made, will go directly to Lostn-Found — and I will be reminding people of that constantly.” Launched in 1998 by a group of friends — Westbrook, John Jeffrey, Chesley Thurman and Chuck Jenkins — the East Point Possums started as a small show in a backyard to raise a few hundred dollars for Pets Are Loving Support. When Jenkins died in 2004 due to complications from AIDS, his friends continued to do the show in his honor. Over the years, the

FROM ‘YMCA’ TO ‘GLEE’

For those who have gone to the show, there’s no denying there are crowd favorites — besides the Possums, of course. The East Point Villagers includes partners Andria Towne and Sheila Merritt. They never intended to be on stage, both stress. They

Lost-n-Found Youth, founded by Westbrook to help homeless LGBT youth, is an important cause to the Villagers as well and they plan to incorporate the issue into their number. The Armorettes, the infamous camp drag troupe which has raised more than $2 million dollars in the past 33 years for AIDS service organizations, performed at the Possums show for the very first time last year. Sofonda Cox, an Armorette for three years, said the mission of the Possums matches theirs as well. “For many years, our goal has been to fight HIV and AIDS and help charities and build our community,” Cox said. “A lot of Possums are supportive of us and we feel we should be supportive of them. And it’s a total blast to go to watch and observe. The show is a great community-building event and provides awareness of what we do.” The Armorettes are also big supporters of Lost-n-Found, Cox said. This year, the Armorettes are planning a medley around a “campy movie” — but that is all Cox would give up. “I love sitting on the hill and watching the performances and mingling with people and just seeing so many people come together for a good cause,” Cox said. And bring your dollar bills.

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TUESDAY, JUNE 11 & WEDNESDAY, JUNE 12:
Last year’s Atlanta Cotillion crowning may be the last as the fundraising from for AID Atlanta launches a new format. (Photo by Brent Corcoran/RNZ Photgraphy)

Films document decades of LGBT equality fight
‘On these Shoulders We Stand,’ ‘Married and Counting’ screen at Midtown theater
By STEVE WARREN It’s not billed as the Stonewall Film Festival, but Stonewall Month events include screenings on two consecutive nights, June 11 and 12, of documentaries that essentially bookend the ongoing story of the fight for LGBT equality. Both films are set for 7 p.m. at the Landmark Midtown Art Cinemas. “On These Shoulders We Stand,” screening June 11, has evolved from Glenne McElhinney’s oral history project, Impact Stories: California’s LGBT History, for which she’s been traveling the Golden State interviewing LGBT pio-queers, now in their 70s and 80s. Even though many of us have grown up reading about the likes of MCC founder Rev. Troy Perry and lesbian activist Ivy Bottini, there will be young people in our community who have never heard of any of McElhinney’s 11 subjects. That’s why films like this are necessary and there’s an urgency to capture the memories of those who were around before the Stonewall Riots began the movement in earnest. The stories have been told before — of McCarthy-era persecution (much of it orchestrated by a closeted J. Edgar Hoover), police raids on gay bars, being considered “sick” and generally being under far more pressure to remain closeted than most of us are today. This film is more Los Angeles-centered than “Before Stonewall” (New York), “Last Call at Maud’s” (San Francisco) and others that have documented our pre-history. It begins with almost dizzyingly brief takes to introduce the B, the T and the nine L’s and G’s who will be our guides. Most get to tell their own stories later at a more leisurely pace. Bottini was president of the National Organization for Women’s New York chapter until she started standing up for lesbian visibility. Soon she found herself in L.A., where she was welcomed as a hero but still controversial. Perry couldn’t find a church where gays were welcome so he started his own. Nancy Valverde endured repeated arrests for not dressing as a woman “should.” Actor Dale Reynolds formed the Alliance for Gay & Lesbian Artists in the days before GLAAD. You may not know all their names but after you see the film you’ll look down and realize you’ve been standing on their shoulders.

SATURDAY, JUNE 8:
‘Cirque de Nuit’ offers new take on Cotillion
By BO SHELL bshell@thegavoice.com Now in its 12th year, Atlanta Cotillion is turning its old fundraising format on its crown. Instead of drag debutantes, the June 8 “Cirque de Nuit” will be an avant-garde ball at the Delta Heritage Museum. Under the old Cotillion format, male volunteers impersonated female debutantes to raise money for AID Atlanta. The cotillion ball capped the fundraising season, with the person who raised the most money crowned the cotillion queen. Now “Cirque de Nuit” will launch the fundraising season, as several teams of volunteers will compete to raise funds through a number of benefits throughout the year under the banner “Atlanta Cotillion Presents.” The team with the highest fundraising total will be announced at the following year’s ball. While this year’s ball is held in June, future events will be held earlier in the spring, organizers said. Since its inception, Cotillion has raised $1.2 million for AID Atlanta. “It’s imperative that we, those who can, help those infected and/or affected with HIV/AIDS… those who don’t have the means to help themselves,” said Event Chair Darrell Burke. “And isn’t that what giving is all about?” “Cirque de Nuit” means “circus night,” and attendees can expect aerialists, sword swallowers, contortionists, burlesque performers and live vocals to match the theme throughout the night. There’ll be heavy hors d’oeuvres, complimentary bar, music by DJs Mike Pope and Todd Skelton, an appearance by filmmaker Del Shores, Blackjack tables and traditional silent auction.

Stephen Mosher and Pat Dwyer celebrate their wedding on the steps of the Supreme Court. (Publicity photo)

DETAILS

WWW.ATLANTAPRIDE.ORG

‘On these Shoulders We Stand’ June 11, 7 p.m. Landmark Midtown Art Cinema www.atlantapride.org ‘Married and Counting’ June 12, 7 p.m. Landmark Midtown Art Cinema www.outonfilm.org

LEGALLY WED

DETAILS

WWW.ATLANTACOTILLION.COM

Cirque de Nuit June 8, 7 p.m. – 1 a.m. Delta Heritage Museum Hangar

If you love to cry at weddings you’d better bring a bucket to the June 12 screening of “Married...and Counting,” the story of actor Pat Dwyer and photographer Stephen Mosher celebrating their 25th anniversary of becoming college sweethearts by getting married in all the states where it was legal in 2010 and early 2011. Dwyer, Mosher and Director Allan Piper will attend the screening, so bring your questions too. Never has a film been more eager to move from the Current Events shelf to History. It’s already dated. When Stephen and Pat began in the fall of 2010 they only had six states and the District of Columbia to visit; the number of states has since doubled, and the Supreme Court could make the state-by-state procedure obsolete this month. At the time it was an important statement

for the men to make, both politically (the film touches all those bases without becoming strident about it) and personally, as a demonstration of their love and a challenge to their notfully-accepting families. They also wanted “the maximum amount of legal protection that we can get,” having already gone through the needlessly complicated process of drawing up wills that would withstand probate. Their weddings involve a number of longtime friends and occasional strangers. When the Iowa wedding has to be moved up because of a threat to overturn the state supreme court’s ruling, it’s held in the home of a friend’s chiropractor’s receptionist’s father! After seeing them marry in Vermont, New Hampshire, Iowa, Massachusetts, California (for symbolism sake) and (on their actual 25th anniversary, April 26, 2011) in front of the Supreme Court building in Washington, you may wonder as I did about Connecticut. A New York Times article reveals they had eloped there in 2009, before Piper started filming. The belated passage of marriage equality in Stephen and Pat’s home state of New York allows the film a happy Coney Island coda. George Takei, may he live long and prosper, narrates to perfection, but my favorite line comes from Stephen’s mother, commenting on those who oppose marriage equality: “People who wave their Bible need to read it more.”

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STONEWALL MONTH

06.07.13

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TUESDAY, JUNE 18: Braves fans come ‘Out in the Stands’
By RYAN WATKINS rwatkins@thegavoice.com

DETAILS

WWW.ATLANTAPRIDE.ORG

The Braves will host the third annual “Out in the Stands” LGBT fan night June 18 when the New York Mets come to town. Like last year, this year’s event will double as a fundraiser for Ben Cohen’s StandUp Foundation, which promotes LGBT equality in sports through public awareness campaigns, grants and other advocacy projects. Cohen’s foundation is headquartered in Atlanta. Cohen is most famous for being a former professional rugby player and Rugby World Cup winner with his native England. Last year’s event drew some 300 people to Turner Field. This year’s format is slightly different, however. There will be another patio reception, but no VIP box experience. “Ben continues to love coming back to Atlanta; he has a very strong allegiance to the city,” said StandUp Foundation Executive Director Alison Doerfler. “We’re excited to advocate

Atlanta Braves Out in the Stands June 18, 7 p.m. Turner Field
for the community through sports.” Another new addition will be the appearance of StandUp Foundation board member Billy Bean, a former professional baseball player who came out as gay in 1999. Bean played for several teams, most notably the San Diego Padres from 1993 to 1995. Five dollars from each ticket will go to the foundation. Three ticket tiers are available, from $48, $34 and $24. Each ticket includes a drink ticket and a meet-and-greet session with Cohen. Doerfler said she hopes to exceed last year’s attendance. “I would love to see 500 people there, at least. That would be my joy,” she said.

Rugby superstar Ben Cohen will bring his StandUp Foundation to Turner Field June 18 for the 2013 ‘Out in the Stands’ Atlanta Braves LGBT fan night. (Photo by Ryan Watkins)

FRIDAY & SATURDAY:

JUNE 21 - 22
Augusta’s Pride fest returns for fourth year
By LAURA DOUGLAS-BROWN lbrown@thegavoice.com Augusta Pride expands this year to two days, offering an outdoor dance party the night before the fourth annual festival packs the Augusta Commons. “Beats on Broad” debuts on Friday evening, June 21, as DJ Kaos from Club One, the popular gay nightclub in Savannah, spins from 6-11 p.m. in what organizers bill as “Augusta’s largest outdoor dance party.” Cover is $5, and some festival vendors will already be set up and open for business. The next morning, Saturday, June 22, the Augusta Pride parade steps off at 10 a.m. to head down Broad Street to the Augusta Commons. The annual procession of decorated golf carts, trucks, floats and marchers draws crowds of cheering fans and usually a handful of anti-gay protesters. The parade ends at the Commons, where the Pride Festival continues until 7 p.m. Headlining entertainers include Thea Davis, Chad Michaels and Frenchie Davis, who is returning to Augusta after headlining the city’s first Pride festival in 2010. They will perform from 1-4

SATURDAY, JUNE 22:
Pride Run steps off from Piedmont Park
By JIM FARMER Now an official part of Atlanta Pride’s Stonewall Month, the Pride Run is gearing up for its 23rd annual event. A collaboration between Atlanta Pride and Front Runners, Atlanta’s LGBT runners group, the 5K run is set for June 22. The Pride Run has changed considerably since its early days, most notably in the number of competitors and the course, which has previously been held in areas such as Grant Park and Ansley before finding its current home beginning at Piedmont Park. It’s also a more advanced race than it used to be. “Over the years, we have worked to enhance the quality of certain elements of the race,” said Front Runners President Bernie Colligan. “We have an electronic timing system this year. The route has also been refined and it’s now a high quality one.” Last year 400 people attended the race and Colligan hopes attendance tops 500 this year. The event brings out a mixture of serious runners, those who walk and those coming out for the cause or to watch, Colligan said. Almost all of his organization’s members will be running the race or helping to organize it, he said, calling it Front Runner’s biggest event of the year. The Pride Run features men’s and womThe Front Runners, Atlanta’s LGBT runners group, have made the Pride Run a Stonewall Month tradition. (Photo by Dyana Bagby)

DETAILS

ETEAMZ.COM/FRONTRUNNERSATLANTA

After headlining the first Augusta Pride in 2010, Frenchie Davis returns for the fourth annual festival this year. (Photo by Laura Douglas-Brown)

Pride Run June 22, 8 a.m. Piedmont Park
en’s divisions, as well as age groups and medals for winners. Colligan estimates 75 percent of the participants are from the LGBT community but says the race is open to all. Last year marked the first time the race was part of Pride’s Stonewall Month slate. His advice for those new to a run such as this is to “be aware that it’s the last week of June in Atlanta and hot in the area.” He strongly suggests using sunscreen and staying properly hydrated, starting the night before, and bringing plenty of water. The Pride Run will host a pre-event a week earlier – a beer bust at FROGS Cantina at 3 p.m. on June 15 to raise money. Each year the Pride Run scours the community and takes requests to find a beneficiary. Money raised from the 2013 Pride Run will benefit both Atlanta Pride and Lost-NFound Youth.

DETAILS

WWW.PRIDEAUGUSTA.ORG

Augusta Pride June 21-22 Augusta Commons
p.m., followed by local entertainers until 6 p.m. The festival concludes with an after-party at Club Argos. Last year’s Augusta Pride drew an estimated crowd of 10,500, according to organizers, setting a new attendance record while still maintaining a close-knit community atmosphere. “I think it was phenomenal,” Augusta Pride President Travis Jenkins said in an interview as the festival ended. “Our attendance went up by a third, our sales went up by a third, and I think everyone had a great time.”

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SUNDAY, JUNE 23:
Pet Blessing honors four-legged friends and family
Congregation Bet Haverim also hosts Pride Seder June 28
By RYAN WATKINS rwatkins@thegavoice.com Atlanta’s LGBT-founded synagogue Congregation Bet Haverim hosts two events during Atlanta’s “Stonewall Month” celebrations. The first, a pet blessing and picnic at Mason Mill Park, will be held June 23. The pet blessing will be a unique event, said Bet Haverim Rabbi Rabbi Joshua Lesser, who is gay. LGBT people, especially those without children, often form a unique bond with their pets, Lesser added. In addition to more typical house pets, Lesser said any and all animals are welcome to the event. “People can bring their goats, their ferrets, whatever as long as they’re appropriately leashed or in their appropriate containers. If you wanted to bring a snake, then bring your snake!” The pet blessing was inspired by a similar event Lesser attended several years ago while on sabbatical in Hawaii. “They showed me what to do,” Lesser said. “They asked me to come up to with an impromptu blessing after speaking to the owners. For me,

Rabbi Josh Lesser will lead a Pet Blessing ceremony on June 23, a new addition to Atlanta’s Stonewall Month calendar. (File photo)

DETAILS CONGREGATIONBETHAVERIM.ORG
Congregation Bet Haverim Pet Blessing June 23, 11-1 p.m. in Mason Mill Park Pride Seder June 28, 7 p.m. Central Congregational Church
it was really powerful. More than one of the people were ill or frail. One women in a wheelchair could barely walk and she cared more for the wellbeing of her dog than her own health.” Congregation Bet Haverim and the Atlanta Pride Committee will also host the now-annual Pride Seder on June 28 at Central Congregational Church in Decatur. The theme of this year’s Seder is “Are We There Yet?” and will look at the current state of the LGBT civil rights movement. “By the time we get to the Seder, we’ll definitively have the [U.S.] Supreme Court decision,” Lesser noted.

JUNE 21-23

PRIDEAUGUSTA.ORG

SATURDAY, JUNE 29:
By JIM FARMER

DETAILS

WWW.GEORGIAEQUALITY.ORG

Evening for Equality honors local leaders
Georgia Equality’s annual Evening for Equality Awards cap off Atlanta’s Stonewall Month. Scheduled for June 29 at Twelve Hotel in Atlantic Station, the event will honor members of the local community with three distinct awards. The Philip Rush Community Builder Award goes to the Lloyd Russell Foundation, whose executive director is Pamm Burdett. “The foundation provides needed resources to struggling community organizations,” said Jeff Graham, Georgia Equality’s executive director. “Without their support, there would not be a Phillip Rush Center,” Graham said. “In addition, they have provided a safe base and acknowledge-

Evening for Equality June 29, 7 p.m. Twelve Hotel at Atlantic Station www.georgiaequality.org
ment for people who can be marginalized, such as the transgender and leather community.” The Champion for Equality Award will be presented to Dazon Dixon Diallo, the founder and executive director of SisterLove, which has provided services to women since 1989, including providing help to women with HIV/AIDS. The other award recipient will be Anthony Michael Kreis, who will receive the Allen Thornell Political Achievement Award. Kreis is a doctoral student at the University of Georgia specializing in sexual orientation, public policy, social change and the law, and is a volunteer lobbyist for Georgia Equality. The annual gala also serves as a reminder of all that Georgia Equality is involved in. “It recognizes the work being done and also raises funds to do work statewide,” Graham said.

FUNDED IN PART BY A GRANT FROM THE CITY OF AUGUSTA AND THE AUGUSTA CONVENTION AND VISITORS BUREAU

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SATURDAY, JUNE 8
Insider’s History of Atlanta’s GLBTQ Community and Pride Festival 11 a.m. @ Open Door Community Presented by Metro Atlanta Democratic Socialists of America Cirque de Nuit 7 p.m. @ Delta Heritage Museum Hanger Presented by Atlanta Cotillion, benefitting AID Atlanta

STONEWALL
MONTH EVENTS
Atlanta marks National LGBT Pride Month to recall the riots that started it all
Though the traditional Pride season occurs during June to coincide with the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, the Atlanta Pride festival has been held in October for the past four years after drought concerns and city regulations displaced it from summer in Piedmont Park. Atlanta Pride will be held Oct. 11-13, but Pride organizers have also made an effort to coordinate and publicize a schedule of events during the traditional Pride month — now dubbed Stonewall Month here. “While many in our community bemoan our move to October for the Atlanta Pride Festival, we are excited to commemorate the anniversary of the 1969 riots at the Stonewall Inn with a robust offering of educational programs, social gatherings, and community activities that run the gamut of the LGBTQ community in Atlanta,” said Atlanta Pride Executive Director Buck Cooke. In June 1969, patrons at a gay bar called the Stonewall Inn in New York City fought back against police harassment in what is viewed as the start of the modern LGBT rights movement. Pride festivals around the country sprung up the next year to commemorate the riot. Atlanta held its first Pride march in 1971, when about 100 people marched down Peachtree Street to Piedmont Park. Many of the 2013 events announced by the

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Augusta Pride Parade 10 a.m. Festival 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. Augusta Commons Presented by Augusta Pride Atlanta Freedom Bands “Our American Journey” concert 8 p.m. @ Saint Mark United Methodist Church MASH ATTACKS! Party 10 p.m. @ Atlanta Eagle Benefitting Atlanta Pride Committee

MONDAY, JUNE 10
Dine Out for Pride, 5 - 10 p.m. Gilbert’s, HOBNOB, 10th & Piedmont Presented by Communitas Hospitality, benefitting Atlanta Pride Committee

SUNDAY, JUNE 23
Pet Blessing and Picnic 11 a.m. @ Mason Mill Park Presented by Congregation Bet Haverim

TUESDAY, JUNE 11
“On These Shoulders We Stand” screening 7 p.m. @ Landmark Midtown Art Cinema Presented by Touching Up Our Roots and Atlanta Pride Committee

MONDAY, JUNE 24
Dine Out for Pride, 5 - 10 p.m. Gilbert’s, HOBNOB, 10th & Piedmont Presented by Communitas Hospitality, benefitting Atlanta Pride Committee

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 12
Dine Out for Pride, 5 - 10 p.m. Doc Chey’s Noodle House (Emory) Presented by HomeGrown Restaurants, benefitting Atlanta Pride Committee “Married and Counting” screening 7 p.m. @ Landmark Midtown Art Cinema Presented by Out on Film and Atlanta Pride Committee

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 26
Dine Out for Pride, 5 - 10 p.m. Doc Chey’s Noodle House (Morningside) Presented by HomeGrown Restaurants, benefitting Atlanta Pride Committee

FRIDAY, JUNE 14
Atlanta Pride Night featuring ChiChi LaRue 10 p.m. @ BJ Roosters Benefitting Atlanta Pride Committee

Zach Wahls, who was raised by lesbian moms, made national headlines in 2011 when, at age 19, he testified before the Iowa House Judiciary Committee against legislation to ban gay marriage. He reads from his memoir, ‘My Two Moms,’ in Atlanta on June 27. (Publicity photo)

THURSDAY, JUNE 27
Zach Wahls reading and book signing 7 p.m. @ Friends School Sanctuary Presented by Charis Books and More/Charis Circle, the Friends School of Atlanta and the Atlanta Pride Committee

SATURDAY, JUNE 15
Atlanta Gay Men’s Chorus Big Gay Sing 6 p.m. @ Jungle East Point Possums Show 7 p.m. @ The East Point Commons Presented by the East Point Possums, benefitting Lost-N-Found Youth

Atlanta Pride Committee, like the annual East Point Possums drag show and Georgia Equality’s “Evening for Equality,” are June staples. Other events, like the Pet Blessing and a series of events on LGBT history, are new or expanded this year.

FRIDAY, JUNE 28
Pride Seder 7 p.m. @ Central Congregational Church Presented by Congregation Bet Haverim Singing Out Proud: Living the Legacy 8 p.m. @ Glenn Memorial Auditorium Presented by the Atlanta Gay Men’s Chorus Stonewall Party Time TBA @ 10th & Piedmont Presented by Communitas Hospitality, benefitting Atlanta Pride Committee

TUESDAY, JUNE 18
Out in the Stands at Turner Field: Atlanta Braves vs. New York Mets 5-7 p.m. pre-game meet-and-greet with Ben Cohen 7 p.m. first pitch @ Turner Field Benefitting the Ben Cohen StandUp Foundation. Tickets: 404-614-1325, stacey.nicely@braves.com

...THURSDAY, JUNE 20
GALA Celebrates the Emory LGBT Archives 6:30 p.m. @ Woodruff Library, Emory University Presented by Emory Gay & Lesbian Alumni and the Emory University Manuscripts & Rare Books Library

SUNDAY, JUNE 16
Legal clinic for same sex couples (Part 2 of 2) 11 a.m.-4 p.m. @ the Rush Center Presented by Georgia Benefits Counsel and the Atlanta Pride Committee

FRIDAY, JUNE 21
Criminalization & Queer Rebellion: A Multi-Generational Discussion 6:30-8:30 p.m. @ Little 5 Points Community Center Presented by JustUs Atl

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 19
Dine Out for Pride, 5-10 p.m. Osteria 832 Pizza and Pasta (Virginia Highland) Presented by HomeGrown Restaurants, benefitting Atlanta Pride Committee Big Gay Game Show 8 p.m. @ Jungle Benefits Lost-N-Found Youth, Inc.

SATURDAY, JUNE 29
Ninth Annual Evening for Equality 7 p.m. @ Twelve Hotel at Atlantic Station Presented by and benefitting Georgia Equality Atlanta Gay Men’s Chorus Singing Out Proud: Living the Legacy 2 p.m. & 8 p.m. @ Glenn Memorial Auditorium

MONDAY, JUNE 17
Dine Out for Pride, 5 - 10 p.m. Gilbert’s, HOBNOB, 10th & Piedmont Presented by Communitas Hospitality, benefitting Atlanta Pride Committee

SATURDAY, JUNE 22
Pride Run 8 a.m. @ Piedmont Park Presented by Front Runners

12 | GA VOICE

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EVENING FOR EQUALITY
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06.07.13

GA VOICE | 13

Inserection owner seeks to unseat Alex Wan from City Council
By DYANA BAGBY dbagby@thegavoice.com

A brawl over Cheshire Bridge Road

A brawl may be brewing in the aftermath of the controversial legislation proposed by Atlanta City Councilmember Alex Wan to oust several adult businesses lining Cheshire Bridge Road. The council rejected Wan’s proposals in a 9 to 6 vote on June 3, ending months of sometimes bitter debate between residents living in the area and those who own and work at the businesses targeted by Wan’s proposed zoning ordinances. But another battle may just be beginning. Michael Morrison, owner of Inserection on Cheshire Bridge Road, said he is pleased with the council’s vote, but he is not confident something similar won’t come up in the near future if Wan remains on the council. So Morrison plans to run against Wan, the City Council’s only openly gay member, using his own money if nobody else throws their hat in the ring. An announcement could come as soon as next week, Morrison said. All members of the council are up for election in November. “Alex Wan is not our candidate. We are business owners and we have a voice, too,” he told the GA Voice on June 4. Morrison said he and other Cheshire Bridge business owners targeted by Wan’s proposed legislation have been talking about backing a candidate to oppose Wan for some time and continued the conversation late into the night after the council vote. “We’re a permanent part of the landscape,” Morrison said of adult businesses. “He was able to take his personal views and push forward this legislation — that is not going to happen in this election.”

Above: Michael Morrison, owner of Inserection on Cheshire Bridge Road and other adult businesses including a gay club in Miami, said he will run against Alex Wan if no one else steps forward. (Photo by Dyana Bagby) Left: Atlanta City Councilmember Alex Wan may draw a reelection challenge after his legislation to oust several adult businesses along Cheshire Bridge Road was rejected by fellow council members. (Photo by Dyana Bagby)

‘A VOTE FOR ME IS A VOTE AGAINST ALEX WAN’
Morrison is not afraid of a fight. As an owner of several successful adult businesses that cater to LGBT and straight customers in metro Atlanta and a gay club opened last year in Miami, he has a permanent bulls-eye painted on his back and is accustomed to city officials and residents living near his clubs wanting to shut down his stores. Going to court to fight to keep his businesses open is part of the job. In the mid 1990s he was arrested in Atlanta on obscenity charges and police raided his stores several times. Eventually he helped strike down the state’s obscenity law in a time known by some as the “dildo wars.”

But he also ran into legal issues and in February 2005, Morrison was convicted of tax evasion and spent nearly three years in a federal prison. Interestingly, he served time with former Atlanta Mayor Bill Campbell, who instigated police raids of Morrison’s shops. Campbell was also found guilty of tax evasion, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “I may not be electable, but a vote for me is a vote against Alex Wan,” Morrison said. Morrison said he is prepared to spend $150,000 in this election to try to defeat Wan. Wan’s campaign had almost $49,000 in cash on hand as of March 31, the date of the latest financial disclosure statement. This amount does not include money raised at an upscale LGBT fundraiser on April 25 where many of the city’s gay elite served on the host committee.

WAN: NEVER MEANT TO ANGER LGBT COMMUNITY
Wan’s proposed legislation angered many in the LGBT community who accused him of betraying his own community by going after sex shops and strip clubs. Cheshire Bridge has a long history serving as Atlanta’s red light district and was where the first gay clubs opened and several continue to operate. Now that the vote is over, Wan wants people to understand he was trying to serve his

constituency, those who live in District 6. “This effort was never meant to anger the LGBT community, and I recognize that it did with some. I absolutely appreciate the history the community shares with Cheshire Bridge, which is why I made sure any strategy would not negatively impact the bars and clubs — either in this corridor or elsewhere,” Wan said. “I am sorry if folks feel my targeting the adult businesses has undone all of the community work that I have done for the overall LGBT movement.” News that Morrison or some other candidate may oppose him doesn’t worry Wan too much, he said. “I will be prepared if this issue prompts someone to run against me this fall. I believe I have served the constituents of District 6 very well on a broad range of issues, and I would look forward to putting that record up against any potential opponent,” he said.

THE COUNCIL VOTE

Voting in favor of Wan’s legislation were Wan, Carla Smith, Keisha Bottoms, Michael Julian Bond, Aaron Watson and H. Lamar Willis. Voting against were Kwanza Hall, Ivory Lee Young, Cleta Winslow, Natalyn Archibong, Howard Shook, Yolanda Adrean, Felicia Moore, C.T. Martin and Joyce Sheperd. Jane Rawlings, chair of Neighborhood Planning Unit F, which strongly backed Wan’s

legislation, was dismayed with the vote. “I was hoping to gain council’s support in rectifying the bad zoning which allows adult businesses to exist in the back yards of our community’s residences. Such incompatible uses should not lie in such close proximity to one another and result in sustained, negative impacts for surrounding neighborhoods,” she said. Wan had urged his fellow council members to vote in favor of his proposed legislation, noting that the idea to rid the Cheshire Bridge corridor of a proliferation of sex shops and strip clubs originated in 1999 with a task force. That task force’s vision was then adopted by the City Council in 2005. “A ‘no’ vote to me shows your willingness to allow six or seven businesses to continue dictating and negatively impacting thousands and thousands of community stakeholders; not just residents but businesses too,” Wan said at the meeting. District 2 Councilmember Kwanza Hall said he voted no because of the “unintended consequences on multiple other districts.” He was also uncomfortable with zoning out non-conforming businesses that were grandfathered in by the city. “If you have an operating businesses and just close them down – if you do that for one type of business you can do that for others,” Hall said. “This [legislation] opens the door and sets a precedent.”

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NEWS

06.07.13

GA VOICE | 15

Team Friendly Atlanta seeks t-shirt design

New logo to address HIV stigma, spark ongoing dialogue
By DYANA BAGBY dbagby@thegavoice.com Team Friendly Atlanta wants to start a community-wide conversation about HIV stigma in a way that’s interesting — and fashionable. The new organization that aims to dispel HIV bias is sponsoring a t-shirt design contest open to the public. Submissions for the contest begin June 6 with the top five being selected by July 8. The public will choose the winner by July 18. “We wanted to bring up the topic of stigma and what causes it, why people are not disclosing their status, are not confiding in their friends, are not seeking services. This stigma has been going on as long as there has been HIV but we’ve not dealt with it like when it was first discovered,” said Randy Prophater, a founding member of Team Friendly Atlanta. “We wanted to do something that wasn’t an event but to have an ongoing dialogue, albeit through graphic design.” Team Friendly’s logo — a smiley face with positive and negative signs for an eye and nose — is very distinct. Prophater said he hopes graphic designers can capture a more subtle emblem to express HIV and the stigma surrounding it that will still spark conversations when people see it. “I think the Mr. Friendly logo is an incredible design. But we’re hoping [the new design] starts a conversation in more subtle way than a Mr. Friendly design shirt does,” he said. When the winning design is selected, Ruff Riders will print the shirts and they will be distributed by gay-fave retailer Boy Next Door for $20-$25, Prophater said. Dimensions are 11 ¾ by 11 ¾. More details can be found on Team Friendly Atlanta’s website.

The board of Team Friendly Atlanta is, from left, Antonio Garza, Don Melville, Dylan West, Nitro Hankinson and Randy Prophater. (Photo by Dyana Bagby) The ‘Mr. Friendly’ logo easily conveys a message of combating HIV stigma. Team Friendly Atlanta’s t-shirt design contest seeks a new, more subtle design. (Logo design by Dave Watt)

DETAILS

WWW.TEAMFRIENDLYATL.ORG

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“[The shirt] will have our logo and be specific to our team. And we will be promoting it through social media. The shirt will definitely have an Atlanta flare to it but not limited to only Atlantans,” he explained. But how does a t-shirt help fight HIV stigma? “For me, it’s about the actual campaign and everything that leads up to it,” Prophater said. As designers sit in front of their sketch pads or computer screens and talk to others about what they are doing, asking for input and suggestions — all of this leads contributes to ongoing dialogue about HIV stigma, he extplained. Then when people wear a t-shirt with this design and someone asks about it, the dialogue continues with more people. The idea for the t-shirt design contest is borrowed from Chandler Bearden, an outreach specialist with the MISTER Project of Positive Impact, Prophater said. Positive Impact provides mental health and culturally appropriate services to those with HIV. By opening up a design contest to the public, Prophater said he hopes all people in the community “feel they have ownership and feel they are a part of Team Friendly.”

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JUNE 4– 7:30PM wednesday, June 26 • symphony hall
at the woodruff arts center Box office FOX THEATRE and ticketmaster
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Supreme Court countdown

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06.07.13

GA VOICE | 17

Historic gay marriage decisions expected to come late this month
By LAURA DOUGLAS-BROWN and LISA KEEN lbrown@thegavoice.com The U.S. Supreme Court will issue decisions this month that could change the fight for marriage equality for a generation or more. The last scheduled session for the current Supreme Court term is June 24. At press time June 4, gay marriage supporters and opponents alike were anxiously watching the court for decisions that could impact marriage rights for same-sex couples in California and around the country. Meanwhile, activists around the country are For immediate coverage the day the planning “Day of Decidecisions are announced: sion” demonstrations, including a gathering • “Like” us on Facebook scheduled for the corner www.acebook.com/thegavoice of 10th Street and Pied• Follow us on Twitter mont Avenue in Atlanta. ww.twitter.com/thegavoice “Regardless of what On the eve of the U.S. Supreme Court hearings on two marriage equality cases, LGBT activists gathered March 25 at the Georgia Capitol. Another gathering is those decisions entail, • Visit www.thegavoice.com expected at 5 p.m. on the day decisions are announced, this time at the corner of 10th and Piedmont. (Photo by Ryan Watkins) this will be a historic date for the LGBT community now 83 years old, marand will have a great imRomer v. Evans, the 1996 ruling that overThe three more conservative members are Atlanta LGBT groups will start gatherried her partner of more turned Colorado’s Amendment 2, a ballot mea- generally seen as Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarpact on the ongoing struging at the corner of 10th and Piedthan four decades, Thea sure that prevented gay people from being ence Thomas and Samuel Alito. gle for equality in Georgia mont at 5 p.m. on the day of decision. Spyer, in Canada in recognized as a protected class by any governand around the country,” Chief Justice John Roberts voted with the 2007. When Spyer died ment entity, was also decided on a 6-3 vote. reads an open letter to the conservative trio nine times out of 10. in 2009, Windsor was LGBT community signed Justice Anthony Kennedy could be a key The tightest voting pair on the court these by leaders of eight local LGBT and LGBT-sup- hit with an inheritance tax bill of more than vote among the current justices on the mar- days is comprised of Justices Sotomayor and $360,000, which she would not have owed if the riage equality cases. Statistically speaking, Kagan (also the two newest members of the portive organizations. “Knowing that there will be those in the government recognized her marriage. there’s a better chance he will vote with the court), voting similarly in 19 out of 22 cases. Both cases could have broad impacts on four more liberal justices on the court in the community who will want to gather together The three female justices, all on the more libon that date to express our joy or our outrage,” same-sex marriage rights around the coun- upcoming marriage decisions than he will eral wing, have voted together 18 out of 22 times. leaders of the groups acknowledged that the try, or end in narrow rulings or even signifi- with the more conservative ones. Thomas and Alito have voted the same in corner of 10th and Piedmont has been the site cant losses. Out of 22 decisions issued thus far this ses- 17 out of 22 cases. Based on analysis of the questioning dur- sion in which the nine-member court has of similar gathering in the past and commitThe surprise might be how many times ted to work with area business owners “to en- ing oral arguments, many court observ- split, the court’s four more liberal justices have the justices have all agreed. Out of a total of 46 sure that any spontaneous gathering is safe ers think it is more likely that the court will stuck together on 14 (the count would be 15 but decisions, they have agreed on a unanimous strike down the Defense of Marriage Act in the for one case in which one justice recused). and accessible for all. result 24 times. The letter was signed by representatives of Windsor case — which could require the fedKennedy, widely considered the unpreFormer Justice John Paul Stevens, 93, who reAtlanta Pride, Georgia Equality, Lambda Legal, eral government to recognize legal same-sex dictable swing vote in the two marriage deci- tired from the high court three years ago after 35 Congregation Bet Haverim, Gentle Spirit Chris- marriages — than that the justices will issue a sions pending, voted with those four liberal years of service, recently offered his prediction tian Church, Love Under Fire, Saint Mark Unit- broad ruling in the California case that would justices eight times – nine times if one counts for what the court will do on the two landmark ed Methodist Church and the Atlanta Sisters of immediately allow gay couples to marry the decision in which one of the liberals did marriage equality cases pending before it. around the country. Perpetual Indulgence. not participate. Stevens said he thinks the court will disThe Supreme Court heard arguments in The four justices generally regarded as more miss the Yes on 8 appeal of the Proposition 8 Hollingsworth v. Perry, a challenge to Propo- COUNTING VOTES liberal are Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Ste- case out of California on procedural issues, sition 8, the ballot measure that ended sameThere are nine Supreme Court justices, phen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Kagan. and find the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) sex marriage in California, on March 26. meaning it takes five votes to reach a decision. Justice Breyer recused himself from one case. unconstitutional. The next day, the court heard Windsor v. By comparison, the three most conservaPrior to the marriage cases, the most sigA dismissal of the Prop 8 case on procedural United States, a challenge to the Defense of Mar- nificant Supreme Court decision on gay rights — tive members stuck together in split decisions issues could allow gay couples to resume marriage Act, the 1996 law that denies federal mar- the 2003 ruling in Lawrence v. Texas that struck 10 times. Kennedy has voted with them only rying in California, but would not have an imriage rights to same-sex couples. Edith Windsor, down sodomy laws — was decided on a 6-3 vote. five times. mediate impact beyond the state.

Decision day

TO SHOW YOUR SOLIDARITY:

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NEWSIN BRIEF

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Trans Navy SEAL, Illinois stalls on marriage, and more
RETIRED NAVY SEAL COMES OUT AS TRANSGENDER
In a move that LGBT advocates hope will dispel stereotypes about transgender people in the military, Kristin Beck — who was known as Chris Beck when serving in the Navy’s elite SEAL unit — comes out as transgender in her new memoir, “Warrior Princess.” Although the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” ban on openly gay service members was repealed in 2011, openly transgender people are still barred. Beck writes in her memoir that she has received support from other former SEALS. The book was published June 1 by Advances Press.

ILLINOIS LEGISLATURE ADJOURNS WITHOUT MARRIAGE EQUALITY VOTE

The Illinois House of Representatives adjourned May 31 without voting on a bill to extend marriage rights to same-sex couples, halting a string READ of victories that saw six states apMORE ON after the vote. prove marriage equality in the past six months. The statement also noted that The Illinois bill could next “any sexual conduct, whether come up for a vote in November, heterosexual or homosexual, by when the legislature convenes for youth of Scouting age is contrary a veto session. to the virtues of Scouting.” Some LGBT activists wanted the More @ www.thegavoice.com May 31 vote, but bill sponsor Rep. Greg Harris, who is gay, said he decided to wait after gay FIRST OPENLY GAY BISHOP FOR LUTHERANS rights opponents launched a last minute media The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Amercampaign that he feared weakened support for ica has elected Rev. R. Guy Erwin as bishop of the bill. “If a bunch of people had voted no, then the Southwest California Synod. The May 31 it becomes incredibly difficult then to change vote makes Erwin the first openly gay bishop those votes to yes should it come back later,” in the denomination. Harris told the Washington Blade. “In these days such milestones seem to be coming at an ever-faster rate, and eventually what seems revolutionary now will seem norBOY SCOUTS TO ALLOW OPENLY GAY mal and predictable,” Erwin said in an interYOUTH, BUT NOT LEADERS The Boy Scouts of America will finally allow view with CNN. openly gay scouts, after the organization’s leadThe vote caps years of struggle within ELCA ership voted May 23 to embrace a change in pol- on lesbian and gay issues. In 2009, the deicy that will see openly gay scouts on Jan. 1, 2014. nomination finally lifted its ban on partnered The vote comes after the organization was the gay clergy, which had sparked national consubject of heated controversy over its gay ban. troversy when it led to the ouster and church “The Boy Scouts of America will not sac- trial of Rev. Bradley Schmeling, then leader of rifice its mission, or the youth served by the Atlanta’s St. John’s Lutheran Church. movement, by allowing the organization to be Schmeling, who was reinstated after the consumed by a single, divisive, and unresolved policy change, now serves as pastor of Gloria societal issue,” BSA leaders said in a statement Dei Lutheran Church in St. Paul, Minn.

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SING, not preach
Joan
Baez
By SHANNON HAMES Joan Baez. The name conjures images of a hippie-era folk musician who performed at the legendary Woodstock concert (while pregnant) and dated fellow musician Bob Dylan. Her renditions of songs like “Diamonds & Rust,” “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” and “We Shall Overcome” remain iconic to this day. But Joan Baez, now 71, is still going strong. She just kicked off a tour this week and will have 10 special shows where she will perform with Atlanta’s own Indigo Girls, including shows at Atlanta’s Chastain Park Amphitheater June 14-15. The concerts won’t be the first time Baez collaborated with Indigo Girls’ Amy Ray and Emily Saliers. The three have performed together since back in the early 1990s. They also recorded “Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright” together for Baez’ album “Ring Them Bells,” on which Baez also covered Indigo Girls’ “Welcome Me.” The Georgia Voice caught up with Joan and spoke with her about her current tour, her activism and even her sexuality. Georgia Voice: What a perfect musical match between you and the Indigo Girls! Talk about your upcoming shows together. Joan Baez: I can’t wait. I’ve played with them before and we’ve even performed as a trio. We have gone on stage with each other during our sets and done songs together. I haven’t seen them in a while so I’m excited to see how this will go. I really love them. The Indigo Girls have more than music in common with you – I know you both have a long record of social activism. What are you passionate about right now?

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

A&E

25

on music,
activism and kissing a girl

Folk legend Joan Baez (right) performs June 14-15 at Chastain Park Amphitheatre with Indigo Girls’ Amy Ray and Emily Saliers. (Baez photo by Dana Tynan; Indigo Girls publicity photo)
Painting and taking care of my mom have been my passions over the last few years. My mom just passed away on April 20, just a few days after she turned 100. I think it’s a lot more important for people to know that right now, I’m not more involved in things than I really am. I’ve slowed down a lot so that I could enjoy that time with my mom and to paint. But I’ve always been involved with non-violent foundations. At this point in my life, I just want to get on stage to sing, not preach. One thing that I can tell you is that I think the most vital social issue of our lifetime is climate change. Every other issue pales in comparison. What will it matter in 20 years what this political party does or how that marginalized group gets treated if the world is destroyed because we keep abusing it? Political quarrels will not matter because we won’t be here to care about those things. The earth will go on but the human race won’t last. I’ve never been an optimist. I’ve always felt very grim about what we do as a human race. What do you think people who care about issues can do to be more involved? It seems like it’s always the same thing – people feel like their voice is too small to make a difference so they are apathetic. Yes, it seems like the pattern is “little victories, big defeats” sometimes. I think that whatever you want to do to being

DETAILS

WWW.TICKETMASTER.COM

Joan Baez & Indigo Girls June 14-15, 7 p.m. Chastain Park Amphitheatre www.ticketmaster.com

kindness, decency and love into the world, you should do that. And celebrate each small victory as if it were a big one. Just do what you can, whatever that is. You’ve been in a few relationships but I read in one of your biographies that you once said after your divorce that you thought you just weren’t meant to be with someone – that you felt that you were just not cut out for a relationship. Is that how you feel now? I don’t have a partner right now. I live on a property surrounded by friends and my mom lived there. She wanted to spend

her final years in the woods surrounded by nature. Someone once said to me that one of the things that they loved about my music was that I could do a live show with thousands of people and make it feel so intimate. I can do that. I can be in a room with 2,000 people and it is quite intimate. But I just can’t seem to do that with one person. You have a son… are you close with him? Yes! ... He’s my percussionist. This is an LGBT magazine so I have to ask at least one gay question. That sounds fun! Have you ever kissed a girl? Yes, I did. I was 21. Did you like it? I have to tell the truth. It was one of the most wonderful experiences in my life.

26 | GA VOICE

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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

PEACH PARTY www.peachpartyatl.com
FRIDAY, JUNE 14

A&E

27

Twisted Dee : 9 p.m. – 3 a.m. @ The Heretic

SATURDAY, JUNE 15

Peach Pride: Tony Moran with Corey David 4-9 p.m. @ Piedmont Park dock

B

The Peach Ball: Paulo with Russ Rich 9 p.m. – 3 a.m. @ Jungle Club

Afterhours: Manny Lehman • 3-8 a.m. @ Xion

SUNDAY, JUNE 16

David Knapp: 12:30-5 p.m. @ Las Margaritas The Peach Tea: Alyson Calagna w/ Martin Fry 7 p.m. – 12 a.m. @ Jungle
Publicity photos

reak out your dancing shoes. The second annual Peach Party weekend is ready to get all of Atlanta on its feet. The three-day event, from June 1416, boasts nine of the most impressive and popular circuit DJs in the world. Peach Party gives Atlanta a chance to compete in the international circuit party scene during the summer months, Keith Young, co-owner of GA Boy Productions, tells GA Voice. “In the past decade, with the annual Pride events being moved to the fall, travel to the city, for those hoping for a dance weekend, has obviously suffered,” Young says. “Getting folks excited about coming or staying in the city for the weekend helps the overall reputation of what people can expect from Atlanta all year around.” The event will feature six different parties and five different venues. Young said that no matter your taste in music, Peach Party has something for everyone. The excitement kicks off with Twisted Dee at the Heretic on Friday, June 14, from 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. Dance music lovers are also in for a special treat on Saturday, June 15, with a free daytime dance party dockside at Piedmont Park. Corey David and international DJ/Producer Tony Moran will spin from the dock from 4 to 9 p.m. as dancers party the day away on the grass. After David and Moran get you revved up, head over to the Peach Ball, taking place at Jungle from 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. where you’ll be treated to the unique and popular tribal sounds of Paulo. Paulo descends on Atlanta just a few days removed from Pride in Los Angeles. The multiple Billboard number one

remixer and 2011 Just Circuit DJ/ Producer/Remixer of the year is guaranteed to have Atlantans dancing and sweating just like he’s done to crowds worldwide. Jungle owner Richard Cherskov is excited for his club to play host for the Peach Party Weekend. With huge events in Pensacola, Miami and Orlando, Fla., just finishing up, Cherskov and his crew are ready to help throw one heck of a party weekend and expect capacity crowds. “This event really is a GA Boy and Keith Young production – they’ve put it all together,” Cherskov says. “We’re just here to make sure everyone has a good time.” Cherskov expects another capacity crowd this year, hoping the success of last year’s event will piggyback into this year. “We just did a remodel and are still putting the finishing touches from the last seven months,” Cherskov says. “Party goers can expect the best sound, the best lights and the best club experience for gay people in Atlanta.” If the Peach Ball wasn’t enough, Afterhours with Manny Lehman at Xion will be the place to go as Saturday night turns to Sunday morning. Starting at 3 a.m. and going until 8, Manny’s high-energy music will have your morning starting off better than any Mimosa ever could. But, if it’s Mimosas and music you’re searching for, then brunch from 12:30 to 5

PEACH PARTY DANCE WEEKEND RETURNS
TO ATLANTA
BY RYAN DIXON
p.m. at Las Margaritas was meant for you. Eat and drink while you enjoy the sounds of “the original circuit DJ” David Knapp. The weekend wraps up with a Sunday tradition. Jungle hosts a Peach Tea starting at 7 p.m. that continues on until midnight. Martin Fry starts things off with his progressive synths and deep tribal percussions. After headlining Atlanta Pride in 2009, Fry is sure to know what the crowd expects. Miami resident Alyson Calagna closes the night and weekend out by bringing her original “Omtronica” sounds through the speakers at Jungle. A pioneer in the style, Calagna’s unique blend of modern beats and “organic sounds” have made her a headlining favorite in some of the biggest venues in the world.

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06.07.13

GA VOICE | 31

Child’s play
Stuffed toy prompts playwright’s reflection on LGBT equality
An inanimate child’s toy becomes the source of family crisis in the new gay-themed play “The Boy and the Pink Bear,” making its world premiere June 20 here in Atlanta. The second play by local writer Ted Johnson turns on an innocent act: A five-year-old African-American boy starts playing with a beloved possession, a pink bear. His father, Jake, does not react well, projecting that this means that the kid will grow up to become gay. What Jake doesn’t realize initially is that his brother Bill is dealing with his own household issues – his star football player son is involved with another man. The two brothers do not have a strong relationship and there’s an eventual tragedy before the entire family is able to come together and make some sort of peace. “The Boy and the Pink Bear” is based on a real experience where Johnson’s own son — 16 months old at the time — started playing with a pink bear. “Being an alpha male, I didn’t react well,” he admits. “My girlfriend walked in and tapped me on the head. My behavior was outrageous and many people would have behaved in the same way. “To me, it brings up the proverbial question – if my son were gay how would I react, would I love him unconditionally?” Johnson feels that coming out is hard for anyone, but is particularly difficult in the African-American community where religion is such an important factor. He doesn’t have any gay people in his own family – “yet,” he says, although he thinks it is inevitable. Although Johnson is not gay, he thinks sexual orientation is something society needs to accept. “People do need to be judged by their character and who they are,” he says. A lawyer whose first play dealt with Christianity, Johnson hopes to take this show to Charlotte next and then to California.

THEATER BY JIM FARMER

DETAILS

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Above: ‘The Boy and the Pink Bear’ tackles homophobia through a family’s reaction to a young boy’s favorite toy. (Photo by Kat Goduco)Left: Serenbe Playhouse brings ‘The Velveteen Rabbit’ to its unique outdoor setting, starting June 7. (Courrtesy photo)

“The Boy and the Pink Bear” June 20 - 23 Southwest Performing Arts Center 915 New Hope Road, Atlanta, GA 30331 www.brownpapertickets.com/event/380754 “The Velveteen Rabbit” June 7 – July 27 Serenbe Playhouse 9110 Selborne Lane, Suite 210, Chattahoochee Hills, GA 30268 www.serenbeplayhouse.com “The Cat in the Hat” June 13 – July 28 Center for Puppetry Arts 1404 Spring St., Atlanta, GA 30309 www.puppet.org

On Stage
“Seminar” Through June 16 at Actor’s Express www.actorsexpress.com Gay director Freddie Ashley helms this tale of four writers getting more than they bargained for during a writing class lead by a world-class author. “The Book Club Play” Through June 23 at Horizon Theatre www.horizontheatre.com A closeted gay man is part of the ensemble in this comedy about six friends/colleagues whose book club proceedings become part of a documentary.

CHILDREN’S FAVORITES REVISITED

Serenbe Playhouse’s three-play summer season gets underway this weekend with a new adaptation of “The Velveteen Rabbit,” directed by Brian Clowdus, the company’s artistic director. Serenbe Playhouse uses outdoor settings to stage their productions and the director feels exterior locations are perfect for this work. Rachel Teagle has adapted the original

story by Margery Williams and modernized it. It’s been updated to a Civil War-era Savannah, where a young boy gets a gift of a stuffed rabbit from his nanny. Gay audiences can relate, Clowdus feels, to the story of an unconventional family here. The character of the Bunny, too, is identifiable: He has long been ostracized and gets the courage to accept himself for who he is and that he can be loved, says Clowdus, who is gay and also directs Serenbe’s upcoming version of “Hair.” Finally, when the Center for Puppetry Arts debuts a new version of “The Cat in the Hat” next week, it does so with a gay actor in the cast — Aaron Gotlieb, who portrays The Fish. The actor, who has been a regular at the Center for many years now, feels gay and straight audiences, as well as children and adults, will enjoy Jon Ludwig’s adaptation of the Dr. Seuss classic.

UPCOMING

“Shakespeare Follies” June 15 at Arts Exchange www.shakespearefollies.com This bawdy romp through Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” features jugglers, dancers, drummers and more.
“It is everyone’s rainy afternoon story — a universe to fill, the house to keep you going when you are five and are your parents are away,” says Gotlieb. The character of The Fish acts somewhat as the voice of reason, says the actor, when the Cat character enters the picture and almost literally turns the house upside down. “The Cat in the Hat” was originally produced by the National Theatre of Great Britain before heading to the U.S.

A&E IN BRIEF
Ellen is richer than you, ‘Glee’ star comes out, Lauryn Hill and Amanda Bynes are nuts, ATL’s ‘Equally Family,’ and more

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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
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It’s a rote celebrity story — rich people buying a fancy new house — but we can’t help but smile when the celebrities in question are comedian and talk show host Ellen DeGeneres and her wife, actress Portia de Rossi. That’s partly because DeGeneres is so cute and quirky she makes everyone smile, and partly because the inclusion of gay couples in these kinds of stories is further proof of how far our society is coming toward acceptance of LGBT families. Media outlets from the LA Times to NBC reported this week that DeGeneres and De Rossi have purchased a Tuscan-style home in Montecito listed at $26.5 million. It was treated as simple celebrity news, not controversy. In other Ellen news, however, we were a bit bummed to hear De Rossi reveal that creators of “Arrested Development” had wanted DeGeneres to appear in the fourth season, but it didn’t work out. “I would want her to play herself,” said De Rossi, who plays Lindsay Bluth on the popular show, according to a report from Australian media outlet PerthNow.com.

ELLEN DEGENERES: MANSION, BUT NO ‘ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT’

‘GLEE’ STAR COMES OUT ON FILIPINO TELEVISION
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Charice Pempengco, the Filipino singer and actress who plays Sunshine Corazon on the Fox hit “Glee,” told a Filipino talk show June 2 that she is a lesbian. “I don’t know what the problem is because for me, there is no problem with that,” she told “The Buzz,” according to the Hollywood Reporter. “So now I ask for forgiveness from those who don’t understand. And those who cannot accept. I apologize: I understand you.”

LAURYN HILL: ‘NEUROTIC’ OR ANTI-GAY?

R&B singer Lauryn Hill, who will soon report to prison for three months for tax evasion, took to Tumblr on June 1 to respond to controversy over her song “Neurotic Society,” Huffington Post reported. Critics have called the song anti-gay over lyrics like “Quick scam and drag queens / Real life’s been blasphemed” and references to “girl men” and “social transvestism.” Via her Tumblr, Hill said the song “is not targeting any particular group of people, but rather targeting everyone in our society who

www.theGAVoice.com hides behind neurotic behavior, rather than deal with it.” She continued, “The whole world suffers from a lack of honest dialogue. Character and integrity have suffered at the hands of political correctness and corporate agenda, while our society moves further and further towards unhealthiness and breakdown. I oppose these trends.”

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
Club” by Benjamin Alire Saenz. Thrity Umrigar won the Lesbian General Fiction category with “The World We Found.” The award for Transgender Fiction went to “The Collection: Short Fiction From The Transgender Vanguard,” edited by Tom Léger and Riley MacLeod. Visit www.lambdaliterary.org for the full list of finalists and winners. Among the latest to announce is out musician Brandi Carlile, who plays Chastain Park Amphitheatre on July 27 as part of Live Nation’s Concert Series B. Tickets to the series are on sale now; individual shows go on sale Saturday, June 15. Other big upcoming shows of LGBT interest include Indigo Girls & Joan Baez (June 1415 at Chastain), The B-52s (June 28 at Atlanta Botanical Garden), Cyndi Lauper (July 2 at Symphony Hall) and the Village People (July 12 at Cobb Energy Centre). — Laura Douglas-Brown

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RUPAUL TAKES ON AMANDA BYNES OVER ANTI-GAY SLUR
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CONCERT WATCH: BRANDI CARLILE JOINS CHASTAIN LINE-UP

Atlanta’s summer music calendar continues to fill in, with multiple concerts featuring gay artists or artists with huge LGBT fan bases.

Seems troubled actress and former child star Amanda Bynes can add pissing off a world-famous drag queen to her long list of woes. RuPaul, who got his start in Atlanta, took on Bynes after she used “faggot” in a Twitter post that has since been deleted. Bynes was apparently angry at People Magazine calling her lost and alone. “Follow me on twitter you faggots!” she tweeted, according to DListed. Responded RuPaul on June 2, also via Twitter: “Derogatory slurs are ALWAYS an outward projection of a person’s own poisonous selfloathing @AmandaBynes.” Huffington Post has the rundown, and even provides an amusing and disturbing slide show of other stars guilty of homophobic tweets.

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Kirsten Ott Palladino and Maria Palladino, the Atlanta couple behind the LGBT wedding website Equally Wed, have launched Equally Family, a site aimed at LGBT parents and other diverse families. The Palladinos are mothers to twin toddlers and the new site — which features the slogan “Pride. Joy. Love.” — offers sections on building a family, pregnancy, baby’s first year, parenting, our community and news. The site also offers “Real Families” profiles, similar to the popular “Real Weddings” profiles at Equally Wed. Check out the beta site at www.equallyfamily.com. GA Voice also partners with Equally Wed on Atlanta Gay Weddings, an annual print guide; look for the second issue in Fall 2013.

ATLANTA-BASED ‘EQUALLY FAMILY’ WEBSITE DEBUTS

LAMBDA LITERARY AWARDS HONOR DIVERSE AUTHORS

Looking for some summer reading? Winners of the 25th annual Lambda Literary Awards were announced June 3 in New York City, honoring books in two dozen categories. The top prize in Gay General Fiction went to “Everything Begins and Ends at the Kentucky

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Event spotlight
Publicity photo

BEST BETS
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The second annual Fringe Festival runs through June 9, including the trans show “It’s My Penis and I’ll Cry if I Want To” and the gay-themed “LoversLane.” 7 Stages, www.atlantafringe.org Film Love presents “Mr Coperthwaite: A Life in the Maine Woods: Part Two: A Summer Task,” a world premiere documentary by Anna Grimshaw, 8 p.m. at the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, www.thecontemporary.org Mary’s hosts a Boys of Summer Swimsuit Contest and Beach Party, 9 p.m., www.marysatlanta.com Shavonna B. Brooks hosts Extravaganza at 11 p.m. Saturday nights at Burkhart’s, www.burkharts.com

FRIDAY, JUNE 7

SUNDAY, JUNE 9
GLAAD hosts a beer bust/fundraiser with a special appearance by “Rupaul’s Drag Race” star Mariah Balenciaga. 3 – 6 p.m. at Zocalo Atlanta, www.richardsandoval.com/zocalo

FRIDAY, JUNE 7SATURDAY, JUNE 8

OurSong, Atlanta’s lesbian and gay chorus, presents “The Singing Heart.” 8 p.m. Friday at St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church in Atlanta; 8:15 p.m. Saturday at Clayton State University in Morrow. www.oursongatlanta.org

MONDAY, JUNE 10

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The weekend Peachtree Hills Festival of the Arts offers a park full of arts and crafts, with an emphasis on Georgia artists. Peachtree Hills Recreation Center, www.peachtreehillsfestival.com/index.html As part of Stonewall Month, Atlanta Pride and Metro Atlanta Democratic Socialists of America offer an Insider History of LGBT Atlanta, 11 a.m. at Open Door Community, www.opendoorcommunity.org Get your car cleaned by a hot, shirtless dude at the Suds and Studs Car Wash, benefitting Joining Hearts. 12 – 4 p.m. in the 10th & Piedmont/Gilbert’s/ Blake’s on the Park parking lot, www.blakesontheparkatlanta.com Musicians from Blair Crimmins and the Hookers, Bird City Revolutionaries, the Bonaventure Quarter, Old 4th Ward Afro-Klemzer Orchestra and more perform at the all-day music fest Tunes from the Tombs, 1 - 8 p.m. at the Oakland Cemetery, www.ticketalternative.com “Cirque de Nuit,” the 2013 version of the Atlanta Cotillion/AID Atlanta fundraiser featuring DJs Mike Pope and Todd Skelton and filmmaker Del Shores, is tonight from 7 p.m. – 1 a.m. at the Delta Heritage Museum Hangar, www.atlantacotillion.com The “ladies” the of National Flag Football League come out in this second annual drag show benefit, 7 p.m. at Jungle, www.jungleatl.com

MONDAY, JUNE 10
Sting makes an Atlanta appearance at 8 p.m. at Chastain Park, www.chastainseries.com

Bookmark www.thegavoice.com to get your daily dose of local LGBT events.
Three years of “love, looks and diversity” are honored in the Bedlam H2(h)O3 anniversary pool party, 9 p.m. – 3 a.m., Wetbar of the Atlanta W Downtown, www.watlantadowntown.com Enjoy the Tidal Wave Party with DJ Coqui at 10 p.m. at Atlanta Eagle, www.atlantaeagle.com Go back in time with the Backstreet Reunion Party, reminiscing fondly about the beloved bar, at Jungle, www.jungleatl.com Play, Atlanta’s new Latino night, heats up at 10 p.m. Saturdays at Mixx, www.mixxatlanta.com The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Brooklyn presents “Missionary in Manhattan,” part of the Dirty South tour. 3 p.m. at MJCCA, www.greatuke.com

SOMETHING GAY EVERY DAY!
Atlanta singer-songwriter Ben Deignan performs for the anniversary of VOX, Atlanta’s only citywide newspaper written by teens and for teens, celebrating its 20th anniversary as an Atlanta nonprofit. 5 – 8 p.m. at the W Atlanta Downtown’s Drinkshop, www.watlantadowntown.com/drinkshop Lindsey Hinkle takes the stage at 8 p.m. at Eddie’s Attic, www.eddiesattic.com Discover some new stars at the New Faces Talent Contest beginning at 9 p.m. at Friends on Ponce, www.friendsonponce-atl.com

FRIDAY, JUNE 14
Adult film star director Chi Chi LaRue appears at Atlanta Pride Night with model Landon Conrad, 10 p.m., BJ Roosters, www.atlantapride.org

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SUNDAY, JUNE 9

Rise from the Ashes – Phoenix Reunion Party remembers the late Ponce de Leon bar, 2- 6:30 p.m., The Model T, www.modeltatlanta.com

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SATURDAY, JUNE 8

Stevie and Lindsey and the rest of Fleetwood Mac perform at 8 p.m. at Philips Arena, www.philipsarena.com

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CALENDAR

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MONDAY, JUNE 10

Tee up at Fore Paws, the first annual golf tournament/ benefit for Angels Among Us Pet Rescue, 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m., Country Club of the South, www.thecountryclubofthesouth.com Join SNaP Co (Solutions Not Punishments Coalition) for a community meeting discussing female sex workers and their rights, 6 – 8 p.m. in the Old City Hall Chambers, 55 Trinity Ave. The Atlanta Harm Reduction Coalition hosts a benefit with bands including Mortal Komband and Crater, 8 p.m. – 2 a.m. at 529, www.529atl.com Angelica D’Paige hosts Blue Monday Karaoke at 11:30 p.m. at Burkhart’s, www.burkharts.com A part of Stonewall Month, catch the “On these Shoulders We Stand” screening, sponsored by Touching Up Our Roots and Atlanta Pride, at 7 p.m. at the Midtown Art Cinema, www.atlantapride.org Charis Books co-hosts a reading of Emory graduate Anton DiSclafani’s upcoming book “The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls” at 7 p.m. at the Toco Hill-Avis G. Williams Library, 1282 McConnell Drive Decatur, GA 30033, www.charisbooksandmore.com Tuesdays, unwind with a sing-along with pianist David Reeb at 8 p.m. at Mixx, www.mixxatlanta.com Billy Idol rocks at 8:30 p.m. at the Tabernacle, www.tabernacleatl.com Tuesdays, Thursdays and early Saturdays are Three Legged Cowboy country nights at the Heretic, www.hereticatlanta.com

Event spotlight
Photo by Bo Shell

TUESDAY, JUNE 11

FRIDAY, JUNE 14SATURDAY, JUNE 15

Photo by Brent Corcoran/RNZ Photography

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 19
Special guests galore appear at the monthly Big Gay Game Show at 7:30 p.m. at Jungle, www.jungleatl.com

Indigo Girls and Joan Baez play two shows at 7 p.m. at Chastain Park Amphitheatre, www.chastainseries.com

Kaled Hosseini (author of the “The Kite Runner”) presents his new book, “And the Mountains Echoed,” at 7 p.m. at the First Baptist Church in Decatur, www.georgiacenterforthebook.org Charis presents “Saying No And Meaning It,” part of the Radical Relationships Series by Angelique Burke, 7:30 p.m., Charis Books, www.charisbooksandmore.com Turnt Up Thursdays heat up at 11 p.m. at Traxx Atlanta, www.traxxatlanta.com Former Men of Chippendales visit LeBuzz with their new Men of Cuffs and Collars review, www.thenewlebuzz.com

SATURDAY, JUNE 15

The Atlanta Gay Men’s Chorus debuts its Big Gay Sing at 6 p.m. at Jungle, www.agmchorus.org The Southeast’s largest drag show is the raucous East Point Possum Show, 7 – 11 p.m., 2727 East Point St., www.eastpointpossums.com Leo Kottke performs at 8:30 p.m. at Variety Playhouse, www.variety-playhouse.com Traxx Girls presents the Heart Throb Tour, with music from the ‘80s and ‘90s including Bobby Brown and R. Kelly, 10 p.m. at My Sisters’s Room, www.mysistersroom.com Southeast Black & Blue Bound in Leather Night gets underway at 10 p.m. at the Atlanta Eagle, www.atlantaeagle.com

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 12

Strike! Bowling sign-up with practice bowl tonight as part of the Decatur Women’s Sports League at 6:30 p.m. at Suburban Lanes, www.decaturwomensports.com Stephen Mosher and Pat Dwyer – the male couple who get married in every state they can – appear at a screening of their documentary “Married and Counting,” sponsored by Out On Film and Atlanta Pride, 7 p.m. at the Midtown Art Cinema, www.outonfilm.org Toga is the theme for PALS Bingo night at 7:30 p.m. at Jungle Club,www.palsatlanta.org Representatives from Reforming Arts, a non-profit formed to provide arts and humanities education in Georgia prisons, speak tonight from 7:30 – 9 p.m. at Charis Books, www.charisbooksandmore.com Get your all night dances move ready at the Official Launch Party for the Pig Dance Blackout Party, 10 p.m. at the Heretic, www.hereticatlanta.com Phoenix and Nicole Paige Brooks host Dragamaniacs, an open mic drag talent show, at 10 p.m. at Jungle, www.jungleatl.com

THURSDAY, JUNE 20
New Kids on the Block perform with Boys II Men and 98 Degrees at 7:30 p.m. at Philips Arena, www.philipsarena.com

FRIDAY, JUNE 14

Lesbian social group Fourth Tuesday hosts its Happy Hour from 6 – 9 p.m. at Mixx Atlanta, www.thehealthinitiative.org Southern Bears start with coffee at Ansley Starbucks at 7 p.m. then proceed with dinner at 8 p.m. at a TBD location, www.southernbears.org Turnabout for Marietta Pride, where bar staff perform numbers and the entertainers mix drinks, gets going at 11 p.m. at LeBuzz, www.thenewlebuzz.com DJ Christopher Kind spins at 11:30 p.m. for Jungle University, www.jungleatl.com

SUNDAY, JUNE 16

You’ll still be partying from Saturday night as DJ Manny Lehman spins at private club Xion at 3 a.m., www.cariocaproductions.com PFLAG-Atlanta hosts a support group for families and friends of LGBT people. 2:30 – 5 p.m., St. Mark United Methodist Church, www.pflagatl.org The inimitable Armorettes spice up Sunday night, 6 – 8 p.m. at Burkhart’s, www.burkharts.com DJ Rick and DJ Maestro spin at 7 p.m. on Sundays at Mixx, www.mixxatlanta.com

FRIDAY, JUNE 14SUNDAY, JUNE 16

Peach Party weekend features DJs Twisted Dee, Corey David, Tony Moran, Russ Rich, Paulo, Manny Lehman, David Knapp, Martin Fry and Alyson Calagna spinning

THURSDAY, JUNE 20
Heart plays at 8 p.m. at Chastain Park, www.chastainseries.com

CONTINUED ON PAGE 36

Photo via Facebook

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THURSDAY, JUNE 13

at venues including the Heretic, Piedmont Park, Jungle, Xion and Las Margaritas. More information and passes available at www.PeachPartyATL.com

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UPCOMING EVENTS
Criminalization & Queer Rebellion: A Multi-Generational Discussion takes place from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Little 5 Points Community Center as part of Stonewall Month. Presented by JustUsATL, www.justusatl.org The Oscar-nominated “5 Broken Cameras” is screened as part of the Third Friday Film Series at 7 p.m. at First Existentialist Congregation, w ww.firstexistentialist.org Boy band extraordinaire One Direction performs at 7:30 p.m. at Philips Arena, www.philipsareana.com Slide this way and that way at Lube Wrestling at 11 p.m. at the Atlanta Eagle, www.atlantaeagle.com
Photo by Laura Douglas-Brown

FRIDAY, JUNE 21

FRIDAY, JUNE 21SATURDAY, JUNE 22

SATURDAY, JUNE 22

Take to the streets for the annual Pride Run, starting at 8 a.m. at Piedmont Park, presented by Front Runners, www.atlantapride.org Atlanta Rollergirls turn up the heat for a double bill of roller derby action, 5 p.m. at the Yaarab Shrine Center, www.atlantarollergirls.com The gay Atlanta Freedom Bands present Our American Journey at 8 p.m. at Saint Mark United Methodist Church, www.atlantafreedombands.com

Augusta Pride kicks off Friday night with Beats on Broad with DJ Kaos from Savannah’s Club One, then continues Saturday with the annual parade and festival in the Augusta Commons. www.prideaugusta.org

Songwriters in the round with Dede Vogt, Caroline Aiken, Trina and Tomi of Three5Human at 8 p.m. at Red Clay, www.eddieowenpresents.com MASH ATTACKS! Party with DJ Pat Scott at 10 p.m. at the Atlanta Eagle, www.atlantaeagle.com

BEST BETS
MONDAY, JUNE 17
Start the work week with Blue Monday Karaoke with Angelica D’Paige at 11:30 p.m. at Burkhart’s, www. burkharts.com

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 19

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The Real Communities Initiative, a project of the Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities, is in search of new partners. Come find out how to help at the Atlanta meeting, 9 – 5 p.m., Atlanta Friends Meeting House, www.gcdd.org Author and autism activist Temple Grandin speaks at 7 p.m. at the First Baptist Church, Decatur, www.georgiacenterforthebook.org Tracee McDaniel, CEO and founder of the Juxtaposed Center for Transformation, signs copies of her book “Transitions” at 7:30 p.m. at Charis, www.charisbooksandmore.com

TUESDAY, JUNE 18

Go “Out in the Stands” as the Atlanta Braves host their third annual LGBT night as the Braves take on the New York Mets. 5 - 7 p.m. pre-game meet-andgreet with Ben Cohen, 7 p.m. first pitch, presented by the Atlanta Braves, benefitting the Ben Cohen StandUp Foundation, www.atlantapride.org Every Tuesday, sing out at Mary-oke starting at 9 p.m. at Mary’s, www.marysatlanta.com VJ Marco Polo puts on a night of showtunes every Tuesday night at 9 p.m. at Amsterdam Atlanta, www.amsterdamatlanta.com

THURSDAY, JUNE 20

Celebrate the Emory LGBT Archives at 6:30 p.m. at the university’s Robert Woodruff Library, presented by Emory Gay and Lesbian Alumni (GALA) and the Emory University Manuscripts and Rare Books Library (MARBL), www.atlantapride.org AEN presents a professional Summer Kick Off Mix and Mingle, 6:30 p.m. at Mixx, www.mixxatlanta.com

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CHASTAIN PARK AMPHITHEATER
Single tickets available all Ticketmaster outlets • TICKETMASTER.COM
Concerts take place rain or shine. Artists and schedules are subject to change. All sales final. No exchanges or refunds.

FRIDAY & SATURDAY, JUNE 14 & 15

TWO SPECIAL PERFORMANCES ONE INCREDIBLE EVENING

ATLANTA GAY MEN’S CHORUS

SINGING OUT

PROUD
FROM ABBA TO GAGA

FEATURING THE PREMIERE OF ‘I AM HARVEY MILK’
A new work by Andrew Lippa

June 28 & 29 2013 agmchorus.org
GENEROUSLY SPONSORED BY:

Glenn Memorial Auditorium

at Emory University

38 | GA VOICE

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COLUMNISTS

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THAT'S WHAT
SHE SAID
When the mic is off
The truth about women in media
Last week was a pinnacle in my radio career. Vikki Locke invited me to speak at a “Women in Media” charity luncheon, and I was introduced by Mara Davis. I have listened to these two amazing women and looked up to them for years. The opportunity to speak to my mentors along with a room full of women was an honor. What I said may not have been that encouraging, but it was the truth. My speech was titled, “What Was Said to Me When the Microphone Was Off.” That topic could have kept me there all day. But I limited my speech to three of the most shocking statements that had been made to me during my career. 1) “Women aren’t interested in news.” My degree from the University of Tennessee is in broadcast news. My career in radio has always involved the news. Through my years on morning radio, more than one male manager has explained to me that women don’t really care about the news. I was repeatedly told to shorten my newscasts so that entertainment stories would have more time. In radio, there is a real perception that women truly care more about the Kardashians than they do the president. 2) “Let ME tell you what women want.” When I began working at one of my former radio stations, I was called into a meeting with a program director who slid a piece of paper across the desk to me. It was a list of things that women were interested in. He proceeded to explain to me the topics that women want to hear about and since I was a DJ at a station geared towards women, I should know this list.
Melissa Carter is also a writer for Huffington Post. She broke ground as the first out lesbian radio personality on a major station in Atlanta and was one of the few out morning show personalities in the country. Follow her on Twitter @MelissaCarter

In this surreal moment, I was tempted to point out to this gentleman that I didn’t need his list since not only was I a woman, but I also DATED women and so I had a pretty good idea of what women wanted. But as a new employee, I simply listened to his casual presentation and smiled. I only wish I had kept that sheet of paper. 3) “You don’t have enough experience to host your own show.” I have been in Atlanta morning radio since 1995. But that statement was said to me a month ago. It was an organic conversation with a man who has been in the media business for 40 years. I asked him exactly what he thought I needed to accomplish to be capable of heading up my own show. He didn’t have an answer. But the reality is that gender re-identification surgery would be the only step I could have missed. I am not a negative person by nature. In fact, I am impatient with those who do nothing but complain about their situation. But there is only one way to change reality and that is to first recognize it. Women are devalued in media. We point to Oprah and Ellen and use them to soothe our feelings. But the reality is that the great majority of decision makers in media and every industry are still men. Look at Congress if you want to see the reality of just how far women still have to go. As I explained to my audience, to blaze a new trail, you have to know the obstacles in your path that need to be set on fire. And I am happy to strike the first match.

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Domestically
DISTURBED
Why I like labels
I came out to the customer care lady at the cable company. I’d called because I decided I wanted to watch “The Prizewinner of Defiance, Ohio,” and my cable box, confused that anyone would wish to see this film, froze up completely. So I called the help number on my screen, and the representative addressed me by my husband’s name. I said, “No, this is Topher, his husband. I’m authorized on the account.” She replied, “Oh, yes, I see. You’re the other Mr. Payne. What can I do for you?” Well, you can start by not calling me the “other Mr. Payne,” lady. I like to think that both Messrs. Payne stand on equal footing, even if my income can’t really support that notion. But that’s not the point of my story. You see, I identified myself to a stranger as the husband of a dude in a completely boring and uneventful exchange with my cable provider. The label I used to identify myself encountered no resistance or mockery. Preppy and I have encountered so many situations over the years where referring to each other as “husband,” or the fact that we share a last name, has been met with raised eyebrows or hostility or remarkably bizarre personal questions. The cable company lady’s non-response reminded me that it’s becoming increasingly unlikely that we’re gonna be anybody’s first time anymore. It appears the labels we’ve chosen are starting to stick. When one writes a blog, one must then tag the post with keywords, which helps readers search for relevant content. You write a thousand words on the history of egg salad, tag it with “egg salad” and “history,” and egg salad historical buffs all over the world will flock to you. I enjoy tagging, because I’m a very pro-label person. I’m aware that’s not a popular standpoint, because labels can marginalize people and nobody likes that. My buddy Scott, the transgendered author and performance artist, has built an entire career educating folks on how you can’t label him. I tried real dang hard to be open-minded about that, but in the end I’ve just labeled him

Tag. You’re it.
Topher Payne is an Atlanta-based playwright, and the author of the book “Necessary Luxuries: Notes on a SemiFabulous Life.” Find out more at www.topherpayne.com

“My buddy Scott, the transgendered author and performance artist who doesn’t like labels.” He has become defined by his resistance to definition. Back when Preppy and I were trying out churches, I fell in love with an Episcopal parish that was very polished and ornate. That sense of formality was enormously appealing to me. I wasn’t interested in a just-folks minister who tells everyone to “Just call me Marcia.” When it comes to who has God on speed dial if I need answers, I’d prefer reaching out to someone I call Reverend or Preacher over Marcia. It just sounds wrong to me, like when I hear a nine year-old call his parents by their first names. If I’d ever tried calling my father “Cleve,” there would have been dire consequences. Authority figures have labels, like “Dad,” or “Senator,” or “Mistress of Pain,” as a sign of respect. And darn it, I think it really helps clear things up for people if you can give them a few keywords to associate with you. I read an interview with Dr. Laura where she said that she’s all for same-gender domestic partnerships, but believes the institution of marriage should be protected. I assume she’s referring to the institution which allowed her to divorce her first husband after she had an affair, then live with her boyfriend for nine years prior to their marriage. The argument Dr. Laura hypocritically presents is one we hear a lot, that we should let go of the word and focus on the rights. But labels matter, y’all. When you tag yourself, you’re sending a very specific message: Married. Gay. Southern. Christian. You’re choosing to take the accepted definition and declaring to the world that whether your usage supports or defies their understanding, you are officially that thing. That’s how the definition expands and reforms over time — through usage. If it happens enough, a label that once would have been seen as ridiculous or provocative is now just the greeting which leads to a lovely evening watching a Julianne Moore movie.

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