Tampa Bay’s Overheard: Arson at the bathhouse and a conversion therapy ban at City Hall

By : Anonymous
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In the heat of the night

The Ybor Resort & Spa in Tampa has had a rough time lately. The private men’s club and bathhouse was closed down earlier this year after being sold by owner Vincent R. Pawlowski Esq.

Pawlowski wrote in an email that he sold the property due to “tremendous heat from the city” and that they could have “stayed open another four to five years,” but he had an “opportunity to sell the property for a nice profit.” Bathhouses were a popular hotspot back in the day, but today, with everybody online, they just aren’t the hangouts they once were. “Why pay money to hang out at a place when you can dial up a menu on your computer and have sex delivered via social media? In short, Tampa didn’t want the drugs and sex associated with this type of business. Tampa gets what Tampa wants,” Pawlowski wrote.

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Tampa Bay’s Overheard: St. Pete Pride Grand Marshal nominees and Equality Florida’s record-breaking fundraising

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St. Pete Pride makes decision on move, Grand Marshal finalists

St. Pete Pride announced March 2 via Facebook that the annual parade will move to the downtown area, but will keep the street festival in the Grand Central District. The new parade route begin’s at Albert Whitted Park and proceeds along Bayshore Drive to Vinoy Park. The compromise will allow St. Pete Pride to keep that city funding.

The night before St. Pete Pride met with the city to discuss parades and festivals, they announced the finalists for Pride’s Grand Marshals.

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Tampa Bay’s Overheard: Mary’s, Monet and Marshals

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That Mary sure does get around

The glitz and glam are heading to Brandon with the opening of a new Hamburger Mary’s restaurant on Town Center Blvd. The new drag stop is set to announce its opening date in the upcoming weeks.

Employee interviews took place on Feb. 14 and 15 and the finishing touches are underway. Before you know it, crowds will be strutting into this new location for fabulous food and a drag queen extravaganza. The building is painted a bright shade of purple showcasing its flamboyant roots and nightclub vibe. This marks the seventh Florida location, and the fourth opened by Mary’s King of Queens, Kurt King. Events will be posted soon so don’t forget to keep an eye out for Drag Queen Bingo and MaryOke! Karaoke nights. Will Hamburger Mary’s be the new LGBT hotspot in Brandon?

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Tampa Bay’s Overheard: Gaga for Tampa, GLAAD for the Times and Bolts Pride

By : Anonymous
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Mother Monster is Gaga for Tampa

Anyone who saw Lady Gaga’s Halftime Show at the Super Bowl (and with more than 100 million people tuning in, it’s likely most of you did) saw the goddess that is Mother Monster put on one of the hottest shows to ever take the field.

Moments after her performance – filled with drones, Gaga’s biggest hits and a dive from the top of the stadium – the Poker Faced diva announced the dates for her next world tour, supporting her fifth studio album, Joanne.

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Tampa Bay’s Overheard: Queer cities and pageant Queens

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Queer Bay

St. Petersburg and Tampa were named among the “Queerest Cities in America 2017” by The Advocate. What makes them so queer you may ask? Well lucky for you The Advocate gave the criteria they looked at to decide; everything from how many lesbian bars and Trans Pride parades the town has to how many theaters were showing Moonlight and hosting the music group Pwr Bttm.

Tampa came in at number 19, called Florida’s more “cosmopolitan” city (The Advocate hasn’t decided if Tampa is a Carrie or Samantha yet). According to The Advocate, this is where the young people flock to getting their education vibe on at the University of South Florida and Tampa University. They also mentioned the non-stop party of the GaYBOR district.

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Tampa Bay’s Overheard: Safety last

By : Staff Report
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Protesting Marco
Everybody already knows about Sen. Marco Rubio’s absence of affinity for the LGBTQ community, his general towing of the party line, his teeter-totter take on immigration and his (alleged) past of defrauding taxpayers via his party when he was in the Florida Legislature. Everybody also already knows that he ran for president this one time and he lost. He also was noticeably absent from many votes in his previous senatorial stint. It’s easy to get bored when your laundry list gets long, but Rubio remains a bit of a bore, regardless of any of those terms. Somebody shake him and wake him up!

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Tampa Bay’s Overheard: A Proud Bay

By : Anonymous
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Friends in Good Places

In the fight for equality, the LGBTQ community has always appreciated the backing of our straight allies. One of those allies in St. Petersburg has always been Barclay Harless.

A scroll through your newsfeed on Facebook will find pictures of Harless celebrating a birthday with Hot 101.5’s Miguel Fuller or hanging out with St. Pete Pride’s Eric Skains or standing with the community at a Pride event or march or rally. That commitment to the community is now leading Harless to pursue a position that will let him do good for all of St. Pete.

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Tampa Bay’s Overheard: We can be heroes

By : Anonymous
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Tampa Bay Lightning honors local trans student as community hero

The Tampa Bay Lightning honored transgender student Mary Jane Taylor as the 11th Lightning Community Hero of the 2016-17 season at the Amalie Arena during a game against the Washington Capitals Dec. 3.

Taylor serves as the founder and president of the Trans Support Group at Jefferson High School and was recently invited to speak to Hillsborough County School’s principals and assistant principals on safety and awareness for the transgender population.

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Tampa Bay’s Overheard: SMART Ride, the Pink Triangle and Ybor shows the love

By : Anonymous
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RIDE FOR A CAUSE

After a two day track full of blood, sweat and tears, across a 165-mile stretch from Miami to Key West, the 2016 SMART Ride is done. At the end of the ride, which was held Nov. 17-18, organizers raised $1,037,140, about $45,000 of which came from right here from Tampa Bay area cyclists.

SMART Ride got started in 2003 with less than 100 riders and raised $169,000, all of which went to HIV/AIDS organizations in Florida. Fast forward 13 years, and with SMART Ride now raising more than $8 million in total, all going back to HIV/AIDS groups in the state, they are the second-largest AIDS bicycle ride in the country.

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Tampa Bay’s Overheard: Big Metro donation, tales from the AIDS Quilt and “Miguel and Holly” make it offical

By : Anonymous
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Challenge accepted?

Metro Charities has been trying to raise funds to renovate their Metro Wellness & Community Center’s St. Petersburg location ever since they purchased the building they are in earlier this year. They set a goal of one million dollars by the end of 2016 in order to move forward with the extensive renovations, updates and expansion they want to do, and they just got a lot closer to that goal thanks to an anonymous donor.

The secret angel of Metro Charities gave a gift of $100,000, but this gift came with a challenge. Anonymous challenged the Tampa Bay area, the LGBTQ community and anyone who benefits from or supports Metro and all the good work they do: Match me, bro.

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Tampa Bay’s Overheard: Funny lady, golden frames and a big Happy Birthday

By : Anonymous
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FUNNY LADY

Actor and comedian Amy Schumer seems to have a love/hate relationship with the city of Tampa. She wrote about the city in her recently released book, The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo, where she called Tampa “horrendous” and wrote that she wasn’t scared about criticizing the people of Tampa Bay because, “I know for a fact that no one who lives there has ever read a book. JKJKJKJKJK, but kind of not K.”

Schumer came to Tampa Oct. 16 where she held a concert at the Amalie Arena for the first time since her book came out. During the show Schumer took her act political and brought a Trump supporter on stage to ask him why he supported Trump. “ I’m not voting for Trump, I’m voting against Hillary,” the Tampa man said.

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Tampa Bay’s Overheard: Kriseman at Mary’s, HRC on St. Pete and Chick-fil-A in politics

By : Anonymous
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Mary’s Grand Opening

While the new Hamburger Mary’s at Tyrone Square in St. Petersburg has been opened for a few weeks now, they made the entire thing official with a grand opening ceremony Oct. 13.

A huge crowd gathered in the kitschy, fun restaurant known for big juicy burgers and even juicer drag queens as St. Pete mayor and super politician Rick Kriseman, along with family in tow, cut the ribbon. Mayor Kriseman wasn’t the only local celeb there. The event was also attended by former Republican governor (and future Democratic Congressman?) Charlie Crist, Tampa Bay gay royalty Mark & Carrie and Mary herself as they all let their hair down and celebrated the newest location.

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