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News Briefs 09.21.18

Carolinas News Notes

Road Tour

Transilient will hit the road for its 2018 touring season on Oct. 8 and is teaming up with the It Gets Better project to highlight individuals along the way. The tour is being underwritten with grants from LUSH cosmetics and the Trans Justice Fund. Contributions are being accepted to help defray expenses not covered by grants. Volunteers are also welcome to participate. Tour dates area available online.

Charleston town hall

The Alliance for Full Acceptance partnered with the Charleston Police Department in early September in holding a town hall to discuss issues following an attack on a transgender woman. This first step to building community included discussions on proper training, improvements on interactions with police and on the LGBTQ community, among others.

Groups host candidate forum

SC Equality and the Alliance for Full Acceptance will host a Charleston LGBTQ Community Candidate Forum on Oct. 3, 6 p.m., at The Schoolhouse. Invited candidates will be provided with a question pertaining to the LGBTQ community ahead of the event that they will be asked to answer. There will also be a time to mix and mingle with candidates.

Blue Ridge Pride fest volunteers

Blue Ridge Pride Festival organizers are seeking volunteers for its event on Sept. 29. Jobs include, but are not limited to: set-up and vendor load-in, merchandise, information, beer and wine wristbands (two shifts), soft drinks, volunteer check-in and festival tear-down. Sign-up is available online.

College best list announced

Earlier this month, Campus Pride announced that its Best of the Best Top 30 LGBTQ-friendly college list has been released. North Carolina schools that made the list are Elon University, Elon, N.C., and Guilford College, Guilford, N.C.
info: campus best.

‘Spider-Man’ goes gay

Gamers are going wild over LGBTQ representation in Marvel’s “Spider-Man.” The PlayStation 4 game is dotted with Pride flags.

PFLAG chapter holiday collections

Concord/Kannapolis PFLAG has initiated its first holiday service project. It is collecting items for the Jeff Gordon Children’s Hospital for those who are newborn to 18 years old. Items needed are new toys in packages, new or handmade blankets, pajamas and infant onesies, deodorant, lotion, body wash, chapstick, hair ties, personal hygiene items, bibs, sippy cups, baby/toddler utensils, children’s books, coloring books, craft kits and supplies, earbuds/headphones, video/board/card games and Amazon gift certificates. Donations will be collected at chapter meetings on Oct. 9, Nov. 13 and Dec. 11. For those who are unable to attend a meeting, contact the organization via email to arrange a drop-off.

Hoyle crowned

The newly-crowned Miss Gay North Carolina America is Shelita Bonet Hoyle. Prior to her win she was Miss Gay Hickory America and Miss Charlotte Pride 2017. Hoyle spends her free time raising money for Time Out Youth Center through her volunteer efforts. She will compete for the national title in St. Louis, Mo. from Oct. 3-6.

McCormack + star

“Will & Grace” star Eric McCormack received his star on the Walk of Fame on Sept. 13. He thanked the LGBTQ community during the ceremony saying he would be grateful for the rest of his life for being accepted in his role as Will. McCormack became the 2,644 person to be honored.

License plate battle

Greenville, N.C.’s Amy Bright won her battle with the North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles recently that dated back to a June request for a plate that read “LSBNSNLV” honoring her partner of 13 years. The DMV had previously denied the request, but reversed its decision, saying it was a mistake. However, the DMV wanted Bright to sign a waiver. Bright disagreed with that and told the DMV that she would seek legal counsel.

Cohousing facilitator training

McCamant & Durrett Architects is offering cohousing Online Facilitator Training beginning in October as part of its Study Group 1 initiative. Sessions will take place on Wednesdays from 12:30-3:30 p.m. Participants will be given skills to empower seniors to age in place successfully. The firm is part of the Village Hearth project being planned for Durham, N.C.

Ladies film screening

Black, gay New York-based director and producer Gene Graham will bring his “This One’s for the Ladies” to Charlotte, N.C. on Sept. 28, 8:45 p.m., as part of the Charlotte Film Festival being held at Ayrsley Grand Cinemas 14, 9110 Kings Parade Blvd. The 2018 SXSW Special Jury Recognition Award for Best Cast winning documentary tells the story of black male strippers and the women who love them, Graham said, adding that one major storyline belongs to Blaze, a “dom” dancer dancing in a “straight” space.

STEM nominations

The National Organization of Gay and Lesbian Scientists and Technical Professionals has opened its nomination season to recognize accomplishments by LGBTQ professionals in science, technology, engineering and math. Nominations will be accepted through Oct. 31 and awards will be presented on March 16 at the organization’s Out To Innovate Career Summit.

Motorola grant

In related news, a recent grant of $25,000 from the Motorola Solutions Foundation to the National Organization of Gay and Lesbian Scientists and Technical Professionals will help support four education scholarships (two undergraduate and two graduate student scholarships) for LGBTQ science, technology, engineering and math students and continue its partnership with MentorNet, a division of Great Minds in STEM, to provide a virtual mentoring program for LGBTQ STEM students.

Prison book initiative

The Tranzmission Prison Project has reached out to bookshops across the Carolinas and is seeking LGBTQ-titled books for its initiative. The Asheville, N.C.-based organization is an LGBTQ-focused prison abolition/advocacy group that provides free books, zines, prisoner resources and various other means of support to incarcerated individuals nationwide. The accept gently used paperback books and other LGBTQ reading materials. Email the organization at to find out how to contribute.

Charity gala

The Pride Community Center of the Tri‑Cities is holding its first annual charity Masquerade Gala on Oct. 19, 7 p.m., at the Carnegie Hotel, Grand Soldiers Ballroom. The event’s proceeds will benefit the grand opening of the organization’s Pride center next year. Tickets are $75 (early bird $50 until Sept. 30) and include dinner, dancing, cash bar, live music and silent auction. Formal masquerade attire is requested.

Art residency program

GreenHill Center for NC Art is seeking all interested North Carolina artists to apply for its 10-day pop-up residency and Open NC Art Review programs. Residency qualifications are: artists should be significantly involved in the North Carolina arts community; born and raised North Carolinians; and/or live, work or study in the state. Musicians, creative writers, poets, performers, visual artists and creators of all backgrounds are encouraged to apply. The review program provides artists are invited to present 15 images of artwork during a five-minute slideshow and get feedback from GreenHill Director of Curatorial & Artistic Programs Edie Carpenter and other arts professionals.

Gala tickets

The 12th Annual Equality Gala will be held on Oct. 20 at the Museum for Natural Sciences, 11 W. Jones St., in Raleigh, N.C. Theme this year is “Reflections” which honors Equality North Carolina’s 40 year history service the state’s LGBTQ constituency. The event features dinner, an award ceremony, silent auction and live band. Tickets can be purchased online at

Summer fellows

Summer 2018 cohorts of RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program included University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Zavier Augustus Lee Taylor. Taylor was a communications fellow who learned that storytelling is a “powerful political and social tool” and is “compelled to ensure the portrayal of people with disabilities is accurate.” He filmed and edited videos of the organization’s summit.

Youth lock it in

iNSIDEout will have a sleepover from Sept. 28-29, 8 p.m.-8 a.m., at a nearby church prior to walking to Durham’s Pride celebration in the morning. Gay-Straight Alliances are welcome to march with the organization in the parade. Participants got together earlier in the month to plan the Upside-down Kidspace for Pride, along with making art and decorations for the festival. Registration for the overnight event is available online.

Incubator apps

Next Stage announced that applications are open for CULTIVATE, an incubator for 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations designed to provide expert strategic and relational supports to emerging social cause organizations based in Mecklenburg County. It focuses on increasing capacity for emerging non-profits to sustain their operations and helps them build social capital toward achieving their missions and visions. Application is available online at Deadline for submittal is Oct. 1.

Posted by Lainey Millen

Lainey Millen is QNotes' associate editor, special assignments writer, N.C. and U.S./World News Notes columnist and production director. She can be reached at and 704-531-9988, x205.

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