Deadline for January 2024 print edition (issue #338) of Erie Gay News is Monday, December 11, comes out Tuesday, December 19!
For the next Erie Gay News (issue # 338, cover-dated for January 2024), please send in-person and online events, news items, and other info for late December 2023 and beyond by Monday, December 11. We expect the next edition to come out on Tuesday, December 19. Please note that this issue is earlier than usual due to the holidays!
On Friday, October 27th, Identity, PennWest Edinboro's GSA, hosted their annual Halloween party, Halloqueen. They celebrated the spooky season with food, music, and games. Their costume contest was won by two people, both winning $15 gift cards and musical chairs, where the prize was also awarded. The event lasted from 6 to 10 pm, with snacks and music.
Penn State Behrend GASE & LEB hosted the Halloween Drag Show and Costume Contest on Friday, October 27. Debbie Does Drag hosted the festivities , and students were treated to performances by Vivian Vendetta-Sinclaire, Monica Lexin, Ryder Slowly, Sassy Sascha, and PSB alum Shea D' Heaux.
LGBTQIA+ Recovery Support Group is now meeting on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of every month from 5 to 6 PM at UPMC Western Behavioral Health at Safe Harbor, 1330 W. 26th St. Erie, PA 16508. Their mission is to provide a supportive and empowering space for LGBTQIA+ individuals who are dealing with substance use disorders. They strive to create an inclusive, strengths-based community where participants can find understanding, acceptance, and inspiration to overcome any challenges they may be facing. Through support, education, and resources, they aim to foster personal growth, resilience, and long-term recovery. For more information about the LGBTQIA+ Recovery Support Group, please call 814-451-2246. This project is funded, in part, by the Erie County Opioid Settlement Funds.
On November 18, Aging With Pride had their book club meeting at Werner Books and Coffee, 3608 Liberty St, Erie, PA. The group discussed John Rechy’s City of Night. Book club is on the third Saturday of each month at 1 PM.
The Yellow Brick Roads LGBTQ+ Ally Organization, aka "YBR," held its inaugural "I Celebrate with Pride" event at the Bullfrog Bar, 3864 Peach St, Erie, PA, on November 17, 2023. The event gave individuals from the LGBTQ+ community and their supporters/allies the opportunity to mix and mingle. It was an evening filled with good food, drinks, dancing, and great people. We are already working on plans to organize other adult events across the city, and my son, Jalon Howard, is planning a youth event soon.
The Zone Dance Club, 133 W 18th St, Erie PA, will be giving away $100 for a contest for posting your video from a Thursday night Flow event. The deadline to submit is December 31, 2023.
Members of NW PA Pride Alliance recently participated Saturday, October 28 in the 56th Annual Meadvile Halloween Parade.
The Zone Dance enjoyed a lively Halloween celebration between October 27th, October 28th, and Halloween. The three-night celebration started on a Friday with a Diva's Performance hosted by Misty Michaels Kall, featuring the divas of Erie. Next came Saturday evening, featuring a dress to impress with a costume party contest. Prizes included $50, $75, and $100 to the three best customers registered. Each night saw a significant spike in revenue, with bustling crowds ready to take on the night. Lastly came the second costume content held on Halloween night, featuring a viewing of the new season of The Boulet Brothers Dragula hosted by Miss Erie herself, Shea D'Heaux.
On October 19-21, Compton's Table held a book fair at their studio in collaboration with local bookshop Werner Books. The owners and staff at Werner Books curated a thoughtful selection of titles centering queer voices and experiences, including many books that have been challenged or banned from schools and public libraries. The event also included a special family-friendly story hour featuring local drag artist Alysin Wonderland.
On Thursday, December 21, from 5:30 - 8 PM, Journey: Healing Together will host Raise the Roof Winter Solstice Celebration at 201 W 11th St, Erie, PA. Raise the Roof is an opportunity for the community to support the safe haven Journey: Healing Together has come to be for many in our community. Healing begins once safety and basic needs are established. Until then, people are focused on finding a safe place for themselves and their family. As we gather to honor those who have sought shelter under Journey: Healing Together's roof, we recognize the need for this shelter (both figurative and literal) to be restored. This year, we will observe the Winter Solstice through a celebration of community building as we Raise the Roof of healing over our families and community. The community is invited to share restoration messages through works of art, poetry, spoken word, and song, highlighting their own journey of hope. This collective creative energy will also assist Journey: Healing Together complete its campaign to raise a total of $50,000 to replace our roof. With this much-needed physical shelter covered, Journey: Healing Together can focus on the mission to Unite, Restore, Discover, and Transform.
Ashtabula Pride Inc. was founded in July 2023 by Michael S. Riffe (Mona Lotz drag performer) of Ashtabula, OH, and Rebekah Beeman of Conneaut, OH. Before becoming a nonprofit corporation of its own, Ashtabula Pride was formerly known as Pride Ashtabula County, which was Ashtabula County's pride festival under the LGBTQ+ Coalition of Ashtabula County, Inc. Riffe, along with Bill Daywalt, AJ Petro, and John Werner brought the county's first festival in 2021 which welcomed over 3,000 attendees to the festival. Due to the amount of work and planning involved, the Coalition's board decided it would be best to relinquish the festival's ownership and turn it over to Riffe and Beeman to create a new and self-sustainable organization. The two formed a board of directors and an advisory board and began planning the first annual Drag in the New Year, which will be held Dec 31, 2023, at the Conneaut Human Resource Center in Conneaut, OH. The event will include dinner provided by Wade's Pastabilities, raffles, a cash bar, a DJ with Dancing, and a drag show hosted by Mona Lotz. The festival will be held on the 3rd Saturday in June from 11 am-9 pm on Bridge Street in the historic Ashtabula Harbor with vendors, food, and entertainment. To get tickets for New Year's Eve or to become a part of the festival, see the organization's website www.ashtabulapride.org.
Erie, PA - November 16, 2023 - Demonstrating a continual commitment to equality, diversity, equity, and inclusion, the City of Erie has earned a score of 100 on the Human Rights Campaign's 2023 Municipal Equality Index (MEI) for the second year in a row. The MEI is a nationwide evaluation of 506 cities that examines how inclusive municipal laws, policies, and services are of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) people who live and work there.
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