Saturday, July 30, 2016

GMHC 26th Annual Latex Ball

It was a proud, emotional and thrilling time at the 26th annual Latex Ball held at the grand ballroom at Terminal 5 at 610 West 56th Street in Mid-town Manhattan, New York City on July 30, 2016.  The event was sponsored and created by GMHC to raise funds and bring awareness to AIDS and HIV. The Latex Ball was built from ballroom traditions: love, family, respect and support. It’s important for the new generation to know that in the late 1980s, members of the ballroom scene came together to help GMHC bring HIV and AIDS awareness, as we were among communities’ hardest hit by HIV and AIDS. One of these projects became the annual House of Latex Ball.  After 26 great years together, we look to bring the essence of why the Latex Ball was initially created. We reflect and celebrate the lives of those we’ve lost in the fight against HIV and AIDS. We brought together community, awareness, testing and information. 
 

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Newark LGBTQ Pride

I had a blast being part of the Newark LGBTQ Pride Festival in Military Park in Newark, New Jersey on July 17, 2016.  I was with the amazing SAG actor and MTV recording artist Lovari, who headlined the showcase.  

 

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Bronx LGBTQ Pride

I was thrilled and honored to be a co-Host and Performer at the annual Bronx LGBTQ Pride Festival and Health Fair on July 16, 2016.  The amazing event took place at the Amphitheater in Crotona Park in The Bronx borough of New York City.  I was a co-host with my dear, talented drag-sister Appolonia Cruz and the talent line-up included Kevin Aviance, Frankie Allday, Daniella Mendez of MTV's True Life and E!'s Botched, Gospel sensation Fern Gilford and many others.  There was live music, DJ, Dancing, food, fun, community tables, free health screenings and information and much more. 
 

Saturday, July 9, 2016

90s Flashblack : Mermaids Cher

I was so happy and honored to be performing in a fantastic showcase that raised much needed funds for LGBTQ homeless youth.  The event was called 90s Flashback: As Time Goes By and was held at the Midtown Hot-spot nightclub, Therapy Lounge at 348 West 48th Street, NYC on July 9, 2016.  The show was produced by The Imperial Court of New York and we all had a blast enjoying songs from the past.  I channeled a 90s Cher as I performed the Shoop-Shoop song (It's in his Kiss) from Mermaids- 1990.
 

Sunday, June 26, 2016

LGBT Pride Parde in New York City

We all had the best time ever, showing our Pride while celebrating and marching in the annual LGBT Pride Parade in New York City on June 26, 1969.  The spectacle takes place on the legendary Fifth Avenue in Mid-Town Manhattan and proceeds downtown to Christopher Street in Greenwich Village past the historic Stonewall Inn, the birthplace of the modern Gay Rights movement, where Drag Queens and other patrons of the club caused a riot by rebelling against a police invasion that took place in June of 1969!  I had a blast with my friends from the Imperial Court of New York and Team Aquatic Gay Men's Swimming league!


Saturday, June 25, 2016

NYC Drag March

Every year in New York City, LGBT Pride Weekend kicks off with an ultra fabulous event called The NYC Drag March.  I loved taking part in this wacky exciting event with my "girlfriends" on, as we strolled from Thompkins Square Park in Manhattan's East Village to the historic Stonewall Inn, which recently became a National Historic Landmark.  At the Stonewall Inn in June of 1969, the Drag Queens were the first to stand up for their rights and fight back against oppression when the police raided the bar and started to harass and arrest customers.  This event sparked the modern Gay Rights movement. The annual NYC Drag recognizes the contributions Drag has given our community and celebrates the colorful diversity and extreme fun that Drag gives to our culture. Thousands of Drag Queens, Drag Kings, Transgender, Gender Queer and friends, family, supporters in all types of gender expression and fantastic couture enjoyed the march on June 25, 2016.



Saturday, June 18, 2016

Mermaid Parade in Coney Island 2016

I was thrilled and honored to be a part of the 34rd annual Mermaid Parade in the legendary seaside resort of Coney Island in Brooklyn, New York City on June 18, 2016.  I was a fabulous Ocean Queen among thousands of Mermaids, Mermen, King Neptunes, Sailors, Pirates, Fish and various other sea creatures. 

The Mermaid Parade is the largest art parade in the nation. A celebration of ancient mythology and honky-tonk rituals of the seaside, it showcases over 3,000 creative individuals from all over the five boroughs and beyond, opening the summer with incredible art, entrepreneurial spirit and community pride. The parade highlights Coney Island Pageantry based on a century of many Coney parades, celebrates the artistic vision of the masses, and ensures that the summer season is a success by bringing hundreds of thousands of people to the amusement area in a single day.  Unlike most parades, this one has no ethnic, religious, or commercial aims. It’s a major New York holiday invented by artists! An American version of the summer-solstice celebration.

 




Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Jersey Candlelight Vigil for Orlando Victims

I was among thousands of people wearing rainbow-colored ribbons while holding lit candles at the Jersey City, New Jersey memorial vigil for the slain victims of the massacre at Pulse, a Gay nightclub in Orlando.  Community leaders and elected officials attended the event to show support including Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, Senator Sandra Cunningham and Jersey City Council Members Joyce Watterman and Michael Yun. "We are Orlando," said Michael Billy, producer, actor and local gay activist who organized the event. "We are black. We are Hispanic. We are Latino. We are gay. We are lesbian. We are bisexual. We are trans. We are Jersey City."  Also at the vigil were Jonathan Lucas, chair of Hudson Pride Connections Center, Rev. Laurie Wurm, of Grace Church Van Vorst, Christian Fuscarino, the Executive Director of Garden State Equality, activist, actor and recording artist Lovari, Paul Mendoza of InterPride, Trans Activist Babs Casbar Siperstein and many others.  The event packed the Newark Avenue pedestrian plaza in Jersey City on June 14th.  

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Brooklyn LGBTQ Pride 2016

A great time was had by all at the 20th Annual Brooklyn LGBTQ+ Pride Parade on June 11th.  The city's only twilight procession marched down Fifth Avenue in the Park Slope section of Brooklyn, New York!  I had a ball with NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, New York City Public Advocate Letitia "Tish" James, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams and my dear friends from the Imperial Court of New York, Summer Strand, Tatyana Monet, Stefani Victoria Sears and Antonio T. Ventura who know how to strut the parade route with style!



 

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

New York City Council LGBTQ Pride

I was thrilled to be at NYC Hall with NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and the seven openly LGBT elected members of the NYC City Council were a gala that celebrated and honored the LGBTQ community of New York City.  Awards were presented to Jennifer Flynn Walker, a co-founder and longtime leader at Voices of Community Activists & Leaders (VOCAL-NY), Charles Rice-Gonzalez, an author and the co-founder of BAAD!, the Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance, Krystal Portalatin, a co-founder of the youth empowerment group FIERCE, Ed Garcia Conde, a blogger who founded Welcome2TheBronx as well as that borough’s first HIV support center, longtime transgender and Democratic Party activist Melissa Sklarz, and the legendary diva Barbara Herr. 

NYC's openly LGBT elected Council members include Rosie Mendez and Corey Johnson from Manhattan, Daniel Dromm and Jimmy Van Bramer from Queens, Ritchie Torres and Jimmy Vacca from The Bronx, and Carlos Menchaca from Brooklyn. Other council members also participated in the festivities. It was so heart-warming to see 5th and 6th grade youth who formed the organization Kids 4 LGBT Rights Now enjoying the celebration. Orlando Cruz, who in 2012 became the first professionally active boxer to come out as Gay, was also there to join in on the fun.  Empress Sugar B. Real and Emperor Tony of ICNY, Cabaret legend Doris Dear of SAG and many others were also enjoying the event held in the City Council Chamber on June 8th. The event was hosted by dear friend Rob B. as "Tina" added fun, glamor and energy to the unforgettable event.