Wedding Bells at Watermark: Rob Ackerman and Russel Hiett

By : Samantha Rosenthal
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Rob Ackerman, who is a retired interior architectural designer and remodeler, and Russel Hiett, who is a retired family and marriage therapist, both have many things in common: They’re both family oriented, lovers of art, and have been previously married to women who they had children with.

“When my wife and I married in the early ‘70s, we had talked about the fact that I was gay, but at that time they had nothing written about it, and she was a professor at UCF,” Russel says.“Since there had been literally nothing written about the subject, we thought, ‘Well, maybe we really were attracted to each other, and maybe that was just a passing fancy.’”

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VIDEO: Outfest honors Tom Hanks as a trailblazer

By : Jeremy Williams
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Tom Hanks was presented with the 2015 Trailblazer Award from Outfest UCLA Legacy Project in recognition for his Oscar-winning performance in Philadelphia 22 years ago.

“How appropriate that this event is being held in a church cause I’m now going to preach to the choir,” Hanks said in a speech that focused on the importance of preserving movies as a way for future generations to hear our stories.

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Screened Out – Labyrinth of Lies

By : Stephen Miller
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Andre Szymanski , Alexander Fehling, Fritz Bauer

It’s amazing to think that anyone could ignore the history of Auschwitz, where over 1.1 million people were exterminated. After the brutalities of WWII and the miraculous financial turnaround of the late 1950s, Germany wanted to do just that – forget. Ex-Nazis hung up their uniforms and quietly slipped back into civilian society. They and the rest of the country hoped that the past would stay in the past.

Labyrinth of Lies is an earnest German-language film about the investigations that brought famous Nazis out of hiding and to trial in the early 1960s. This time, Germans prosecuted Germans, ripping open old wounds.

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Kim Davis tells “Good Morning America” she’s not a hypocrite

By : Wire Report
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FRANKFORT, Ky (AP) – She’s already spent five days in jail, and now a Kentucky clerk could be back in court soon for altering marriage license forms issued to same-sex couples.

Lawyers for two gay couples and two straight couples questioned the validity of the new marriage licenses and asked a federal judge to order Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis’ office to reissue them Sept. 21. If she refuses, the lawyers asked the judge to put the office in receivership and have someone else do it.

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Game of Clowns! Liveblogging tonight’s Republican primary debate

By : Billy Manes
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Now that it has become apparent that the Republican presidential field of dreams is about the size of public school’s third grade homeroom class, and the intelligence – minus the public schooling part! – decisions had to be made by the brass at Fox News as to how to cover it. Somebody in an ugly suit sitting at a mahogany table grumbled, “Let’s just pick ten of ‘em.” And so it shall be.

Tonight, we will pop the red popcorn and drink the red drinks as we liveblog the political free-for all that will likely stutter and huff and puff around issues like marriage equality, Obamacare and immigration. We’ll also be sure to notice the nuanced gaffes that make this pageant so amusing and amazing.

And away we go: 

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Kelly Clarkson talks new equality-inspired anthem, gay bars and her ‘Kezbo’ following

By : Chris Azzopardi
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Before catapulting to pop stardom, Kelly Clarkson was one of us. In many ways, she still is.

The original American Idol, who memorably erupted into waterworks when she won the first season of the reality show in 2002, wasn’t always able to muster the willpower she’s instilled in the gay community through her uncompromising persona and liberating pop anthems, including those on her latest album, Piece by Piece.

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Orlando Gay Chorus announces new artistic director

By : Samantha Rosenthal
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O News OGC

James Rode

Orlando – James Rode is the new artistic director and conductor of Orlando Gay Chorus.

OGC celebrates 25 years this year and Rode is ready to take on this new challenge.

“It’s exciting and a new adventure to kind of jump on,” Rode said.

OGC’s President of the Board of Directors Karl Haglund made the announcement Feb. 16.

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Light up the Courtyard 2014

By : Patrick O'Connor
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Parliament House’s annual festival of holiday lights Dec. 6 featured performances by the Sounds of Freedom marching band, the Orlando Gay Chorus and The Orlando Sisters – Abbey of St. Gertrude de Nivelles. Santa and Mrs. Claus took some time out of their busy holiday schedules to make an appearance!

Photos by Pat O’Rourke of Bears in the City.

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Montana parishioners meet with bishop over gay couple

By : Wire Report
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GREAT FALLS, Mont. (AP) – A Roman Catholic bishop says a central Montana parish is about evenly divided over a new priest’s decision to prohibit a gay couple from receiving Communion unless they divorce, live separately and write a statement affirming that a marriage is between a man and a woman.

Bishop Michael Warfel of the Diocese of Great Falls-Billings met Sept. 20 with about 300 parishioners of St. Leo the Great Catholic Church in Lewistown, where he also led a Mass. About half the parishioners supported the Rev. Samuel Spiering’s decision, while the other half were very angry, the Great Falls Tribune reported.

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Diva Gospel Brunch

By : Samantha Rosenthal
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Funky Monkey Wine Company Pointe Orlando hosted a special Gay Days edition of their regular Sunday Diva Gospel Brunch, where diners enjoyed mimosas, amazing breakfast dishes and a little joyful sound provided by the lovely cast of divas themselves.

The show started at 12:30 p.m. and the cast of fabulous divas took attendees through their “Heaven and Hell” showm inviting invite the audience to “pay repentance” (through having a good time) for the “sinning” they did all weekend long. The ladies sang many Gospel choir tunes and then moved on to some diva-ballad classics.

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Manatee Pride makes big debut with 1,500 in attendance

By : Steve Blanchard
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Bradenton – Jack Newton looked around Bradenton Riverwalk March 22 and was amazed. Not only by the size of the inaugural Manatee Pride, but the age range of those attending.

“I never knew there was such a community here,” Newton said as he browsed vendor booths. “I’m stunned, really. I would have never imagined all of this could happen here.”

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Gay teacher says he knew his engagement would get him fired

By : Wire Story
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SANDUSKY, Ohio (AP) – A gay teacher at a Roman Catholic school in Ohio says he knew that announcing his engagement would mean he’d be forced to leave his job.

Brian Panetta says he had hoped to step down as band and choir director at Sandusky Central Catholic School at the end of the school year.

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