LGBTQIA

 Raising the Bar: Hardwicks

Words by Kelila Ritchie   “Refreshing, welcoming and different.”   These are three words Sarah Merritt used to describe her new gig as a bartender at Hardwicks Bar. Located in the Elbow District Downtown (in the old London Bridge space), Hardwicks is the perfect place to go if you want to feel like you’re in an ’80s film with disco balls and strobe lights. And with a full liquor bar, beer, wine, seltzer, cocktails and shots are all on the menu.   My favorite thing, for sure, about this establishment is the freedom it holds. It’s a place where people …

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Welcome to the Gayborhood

  Words by Kelila Ritchie Rainbows, loud music, infectious laughter, dance parties in the middle of the street. River City Pride is the place to be every October. It’s something I personally look forward to every single year. People from so many different walks of life, dancing together, drinking together, taking pictures together. It’s a day for everyone who participates to just be without fear of judgment. In either direction you look, you see people just thoroughly enjoying themselves. We don’t see a lot of that these days. So anytime I’m able to squeeze in some dopamine boosting experiences, I’m …

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What Does Pride Mean To You?

Words and Interviews by Kelila Ritchie & Teresa Spencer October is LGBTQ+ History Month where we celebrate and remember the history and accomplishments of lesband, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. We asked a couple members of the community: “What does pride mean to you?”   Jay McPherson: “Pride means self-love, self-acceptance. Being unapologetically you and not caring about what the next person thinks about the things that make you happy: That’s pride. Pride in who I am. Comfortable in my skin … COZY.”   Geexella: “To me Pride means resistance, power and change! Black and brown trans femme have …

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The Domino Effect of Desantis’ Drag Ban

Words by Su Ertekin-Taner On May 17, Florida turned a deeper shade of red. Now signed into law by Gov. Ron DeSantis, Senate Bill 1438, blatantly coined Florida’s “anti-drag bill,” defines restrictions on public food service establishments and lodging establishments that admit children to “adult live performance[s],” or “any show, exhibition, or other presentation in front of a live audience which … depicts or simulates nudity, sexual conduct, sexual excitement, or specific sexual activities” like “lewd content, or the lewd exposure of prosthetic or imitation genitals or breasts.”    The law, signed just days in advance of DeSantis’ announcement of …

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The Grey Area

Kale Boucher Are you a boy or a girl? Why are you ashamed of your body? What do you expect people to think? You don’t want to be a man? Why doesn’t your girlfriend just date a dude? It’s just the way it is. Keagan Anfuso, a woman and creator who just happens to feel comfortable rocking loose fitting clothes and a “boyish” haircut, copied these quotes from memory onto index cards. In preparation to pitch their film, co-director Drew Brown suggested Keagan write down all the comments she could remember: anything funny, hurtful, or outright confusing someone has said …

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Say Gay

Florida, you have disappointed me once again. As if the LGBTQ+ community did not have enough to fear already, Florida legislation is adding a new law to ensure schools can no longer be a safe space for its students. We all know certain Florida government officials to be very controversial, but this absolutely takes the cake. The new legislation, if signed into law, will restrict primary schools from teaching students about sexual orientation and gender issues. What is the Parental Rights in Education bill? The bill, commonly known as the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill, is legislation passed by the Florida …

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JASMYN

As the LGBTQ+ community faces more and more obstacles, including the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill, a safe place for the community is needed now more than ever. JASMYN is stepping up to take on the challenge in an effort to build a community where young LGBTQ+ members can freely be themselves, despite any backlash those members may face with friends and/or family. JASMYN is an organization that aims to provide a safe place offering health and wellness services to young members of the LGBTQ+ community. They offer development opportunities and promote equality for all. They believe the young members are …

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Filmmaker Keagan Anfuso: Definitions of Gender and How that Affects the Life of Masculine Women

The Grey Area, Keagan and Drew Brown, The Grey Area: Local Filmmaker Keagan Anfuso Explores the Masculine Female Perspective

The Grey Area: Local Filmmaker Keagan Anfuso and the Masculine Female Perspective Photos by Verance Photography and Geek Chic Photo Keagan Anfuso is more than the sum of what you see. She’s a filmmaker, rock-climbing enthusiast, experience junkie and a consummate talker. She speaks in complex ribbons of thought, layering paragraphs as needed to illustrate a point. She’s passionate about film and dedicated to creating compelling art that sparks meaningful conversation. A single question often elicits a multi-pronged response, branching off down different paths, but ultimately winding up exactly where she was meant to be.  She looks you in the eye and is …

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Ada Vox performs at River City Pride Fest

The 2018 River City Pride festival marks the 40th anniversary of the city’s signature LGBTQIA+ event with a weekend celebration designed to foster a sense of community, equality and diversity. The parade and festival are vibrant extensions of that mission with a broad spectrum of entertainment in every shade of the rainbow. Among this year’s featured performers is who celebrated her own landmark milestone as the first drag queen to advance to the semi-finals on season 16 of American Idol. The show provided Vox with a platform to showcase her talent but share her story as well. “I am beyond …

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