Sunday, June 28, 2015

LGBT Pride in Historic Times

It was a thrill beyond words to be part of a historic and emotional celebration of human rights.  Lots of Rainbows and hundreds of thousands of people packed Manhattan's streets for the annual LGBT Pride Parade.  It's always a good time, but this year was especially high-powered and eminent since it was two days after the Supreme Court's landmark ruling legalizing marriage for Gay and Lesbian couples across the entire United States of America.   I met up with dear friends, including elected politicians, NYPD, NYFD and media personalities to celebrate and bask in the cheers and good nature of everyone commemorating and painting the town in rainbow colors.  The parade took place on Fifth Avenue, proceeding downtown to Christopher Street in Greenwich Village past the historic Stonewall Inn.  Had a blast chatting and celebrating with Supreme Court Justice Doris Ling-Cohen who was the first justice to vote for gay marriage in a case in 2005.  

Friday, June 26, 2015

Drag March with Historic Celebration

I always have the best time ever at the annual NYC Drag March, but this year was especially joyous since it happened on the same day the Supreme Court of the United States announced its ruling of Marriage Equality saying that marriages of two people of the same gender are now legally recognized and licensed in all 50 states of the United States of America.  The Drag March, led by the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, Church Ladies for Choice and Radical Faeries, celebrates and honors the art, culture and power of Drag. And invokes the history of that power recognizing the Drag Queens who were the first that fought back against Gay oppression and stood up for LGBT rights at a police raid at the Stonewall Inn in 1969. 

Thousands got all dolled up in wigs, make-up, glitter, heels and costumes and joined the March that started with a gathering ritual in Tompkins Square Park in Manhattan's East Village.  With gorgeous NYPD escorts, we marched west to the historic Stonewall Inn,  where people had already been celebrating all day! Stonewall was too full to let everyone inside, leading to a happy spillover with tons of people in the street reveling.  There were fire dancers, vibrant colorful displays of fierce fashions and lots of cheering.  One of the more popular chants was a playful reaction to the Supreme Court decision:  "We don't want to marry, we just want to f*ck!"  Once the March reached the Stonewall site, everyone held hands and sang "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" from The Wizard of Oz.  On this historic day, there was special significance to "Dreams that you dare to dream, really do come true.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Mermaid Parade - Fish Fierceness in Brooklyn

I was thrilled and honored to be a part of the 33rd annual Mermaid Parade in the legendary seaside resort of Coney Island in Brooklyn, New York City on June 20, 2015.  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.