PHOTOS: Tampa Bay Diversity Chamber hosts NGLCC Opening Reception

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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TAMPA | The Tampa Bay Diversity Chamber of Commerce (TBDCC) hosted the opening reception for the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) International Business & Leadership Conference at the Italian Club in Ybor Aug. 13.

The NGLCC’s 2019 conference is being held in Tampa Aug. 13-16 and is the largest gathering of LGBTQ business leaders and allies in the world. More than 1,000 of its attendees gathered for the opening reception at the historic venue, which was chosen to highlight Tampa’s Cuban and Italian heritage.

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PHOTOS: GayDayS holds kick-off at Parliament House, announces new host hotel for 2020

By : Jeremy Williams
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ORLANDO | GayDayS held the kick-off party to its 2019 weekend of events at the Parliament House in Orlando Aug. 13.

GayDayS weekend begins at the Wyndham Orlando Resort on Aug. 15 and runs through Aug. 18 with pool parties, expos and an array of other events.

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Two Spirit to host GayDayS events with focus on families, trans community

By : Jeremy Williams
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Two Spirit Health Services—a nonprofit that provides mental health, behavioral, substance abuse, primary care, transgender health and related services to Central Florida’s LGBTQ community—is stepping up its involvement with GayDayS by hosting a series of events focused on the transgender and LGBTQ family communities at the host hotel.

“I think a lot of times the LGBTQ community can be pigeon-holed into we are all single and here for the pool parties, and I think that people know nowadays that’s not the case,” says Brittani Acuff, Two Spirit Community Relations and Events Manager. “This year [Two Spirit co-founder and COO] Robert Baker-Hargrove was really the one behind wanting to get involved because GayDayS has such a vast variety of great people, and that’s what Two Spirit is about.”

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Watermark’s event guide to your GayDayS weekend

By : Jeremy Williams
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GayDayS is keeping you busy with nearly a full week of pool parties, expos and events Aug. 13-18, and with so much going on it can be easy to miss out on an event—but have no fear, Watermark is here!

We have gathered all of the official GayDayS events—single day, recurring and pool-related—on this page. As well, we listed the suggested theme parks each day so you can be sure that you do not miss a single moment of fun in and out of the sun.

Times, locations and prices are subject to change. To purchase tickets, visit GayDayS.com.

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‘Drag Race’ muscle queen Kameron Michaels takes Parliament House stage for GayDayS

By : Jeremy Williams
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Even within a profession built on marching to the beat of your own drum, Kameron Michaels isn’t your typical drag performer. Michaels has many tattoos and puts a lot of focus on weight training and physical fitness, earning the nickname “muscle queen,” which has helped her develop a unique drag appearance.

Along with muscle queen and drag superstar, Michaels is adding the title of recording artist to the mix with the release of “Freedom,” her new single. Michaels is bringing the muscles, the tats and the new single to the Parliament House Aug. 16 for Orlando’s GayDayS weekend.

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Orlando LGBTQ clubs bring the queens for GayDayS weekend

By : Jeremy Williams
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GayDayS weekend will not only be popping at the host hotel. Orlando’s clubs and bars are having parties of their own and they are certain to be lit!

Below we have gathered information on some of the hottest queens taking Orlando’s GayDayS weekend by storm.

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Watermark Giveaway: Two tickets for ‘KINK: An Art Affair’ at Metro Inclusive Health

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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Tampa Bay will get a big dose of sexy Aug. 17 as “KINK: An Art Affair” makes its debut at Metro Inclusive Health in St. Petersburg Aug. 17 from 8 p.m.-midnight.

Metro say that “KINK” is erotic by nature and provocative by experience. The art auction featuring fabulous entertainment will serve as a platform to educate on safe and informed sex through knowledge and sexual empowerment, and Watermark wants to send you and a guest to enjoy the experience for free.

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The Pride Chamber honors LGBTQ professionals, community leaders at the 2019 Pride in Business Awards Gala

By : Jeremy Williams
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The Pride Chamber, formerly known as MBA Orlando, recognized LGBTQ business professionals and community leaders at the 2019 Pride in Business Awards Gala, presented by Two Spirit Health, at Hard Rock Live at Universal’s CityWalk in Orlando Aug. 3.

Hosted by Spectrum News 13’s Eric Levy and the legendary Miss Sammy, the evening featured a VIP reception, live entertainment and an epic after party in CityWalk.

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Watermark Giveaway: Two tickets for Science Night Live at the Orlando Science Center

By : Jeremy Williams
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Live from Orlando, it’s Science Night Live!

The Orlando Science Center (OSC) is back with Science Night Live on Aug. 17 from 8-11:30 p.m. and Watermark wants to send you and a guest to experience it for free. Come out and enjoy everything you love about OSC – without the kids! Special programming is designed just for adults.

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Come Out With Pride announces theme, events for 2019 celebration

By : Jeremy Williams
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ABOVE: Come Out With Pride board members (L-R) Marc Espeso, Nate West, Karen Brown, Clayton Altman, Jeff Prystajko, Blue Star and Joyce Almeida at the 2019 events announcement July 31. (Photo by Jeremy Williams)

ORLANDO | Come Out With Pride (COWP) announced its official theme, entertainers and list of events during a press conference at The Venue in Orlando July 31.

“2018 was a spectacular year. The weather was perfect and we had a lot of changes; the layout changed, we added a new stage, we added a huge new Marketplace, the energy level was absolutely incredible and we want to keep that going,” said COWP Board President Jeff Prystajko during the press conference.

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Comedian Matteo Lane brings his singing stand-up to Tampa

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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Comedian Matteo Lane wants you to know that he’s gay. It’s something that he shares almost immediately with his audiences, whether they’re laughing with him on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” or logging onto Netflix for “The Comedy Lineup.”

“I walk up and say, ‘Hi, thanks so much, I’m obviously gay,’” he explains, “and then I move on. It’s a real power move, because I know they’re thinking it and I’m proud of it.” It’s a choice that’s served the classically trained opera singer and painter well, leading to captivated crowds for Comedy Central, Logo, HBO and across the world for his live tour.

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PHOTOS: Flamingo Resort St. Pete’s farewell party

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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ST. PETERSBURG | Flamingo Resort held its final Sunday Tea Dance July 28, a poolside farewell after serving Tampa Bay’s LGBTQ community for more than 10 years.

Flamingo General Manager Jon Jusino confirmed the resort’s imminent closure July 22. Speculation began July 20 after Bay Area Auction Services Inc. advertised an “everything goes” sale on resort property scheduled for Aug. 6. 

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