Pantene releases new trans-inclusive holiday ad

By : John Paul King OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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In partnership with GLAAD and the Trans Chorus of Los Angeles, Pantene is launching a new ad campaign this season in hope of promoting awareness of the challenges facing many LGBTQ+ people during the holidays.

As reported by People, the ad features TCLA’s performing “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” and hopes to spread some love during a time of the year that can often be difficult for those whose gender identity or sexual orientation aren’t accepted by their families. Intercut with the chorus singing are scenes of individual members as they prepare for their own holiday homecomings.

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Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus ‘comes out’ with new name

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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ABOVE: The Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus’ new name and logo. Photo courtesy the caucus.

The Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus, formerly the LGBTA Democratic Caucus, unveiled their new name on Oct. 11 for National Coming Out Day.

The caucus has 19 statewide chapters throughout Florida. It represents members of the LGBTQ community to the Florida Democratic Party, which it’s currently doing at the party’s 2019 State Convention in Orlando Oct. 11-13.

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10.02.19 Central Florida Bureau Chief’s Desk

By : Jeremy Williams
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It’s October, which means it’s that time of the year when I climb into the attic, dust off the boxes that read “HOLIDAY CRAP” and start figuring out how I am going to decorate for… Christmas! Merry Christmas, everyone!

Yes, I know that we have a couple more months and several other holidays to get through before the big, jolly elf brings me a bunch of stuff that I will love and play with for five minutes before moving on to making a fort out of the boxes all that junk came in, but I can’t help it. I love Christmas and, to be honest, I’m not a big fan of Halloween. I know, that is sacrilegious to say being gay but it doesn’t carry the same joy for me that it does for all the other L’s, G’s, B’s, T’s and Q’s I know.

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LGBTQ Resource Center seeks coming out stories for project

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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ABOVE: The opening reception of the LGBTQ Resource Center’s “Transcending Gender” exhibit in Nov. 2018. Photo by Ryan Williams-Jent.

Gulfport, Fla. | The LGBTQ Resource Center at the Gulfport Public Library is seeking your coming out stories on or before Oct. 11, National Coming Out Day 2019.

The organization “is embarking on a project to produce a book entitled ‘Coming Out in Gulfport … Our Stories,’” they shared Sept. 30. “We are currently seeking local residents who would be willing to share their coming out story on audio tape that we could then transcribe into a publication for our collection.”

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Come OUT St. Pete returns for third year

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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ABOVE: Come OUT St. Pete board members and grand marshals Brian Longstreth, Claire Elisan, Jim Woodfield, Cole Foust, Jayson Clancey, Chris Jones, Bill Kody and Chuck Henson at Metro’s LGBTQ Welcome Center Sept. 17. Photo by Ryan Williams-Jent.

ST. PETERSBURG | Come OUT St. Pete (COSP) will hold its third annual outing Oct. 3-11 in the Grand Central District (GCD) and nearby neighborhoods to celebrate National Coming Out Day 2019.

COSP exists to advocate for community awareness and acceptance of all sexual orientations and gender identities. They do so with events that celebrate “coming out of the closet and into the world.”

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HRC, CNN to host Democratic presidential town hall on LGBTQ issues

By : Jeremy Williams
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(Image from HRC.org)

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) is partnering with CNN to host an LGBTQ-focused town hall for the 2020 Democratic presidential candidates on Oct. 10. The LGBTQ rights organization made the announcement on its website Sept. 5.

“The evening will constitute the largest-ever audience for a Democratic presidential town hall devoted to [LGBTQ] issues and will mark the first time in history that a major cable news network will air a presidential event devoted to issues of importance to the LGBTQ community,” HRC stated.

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Gay high school student asks straight football captain to homecoming

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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High school students Alexander Duarte and Erick Pineda have gone viral for a sweet homecoming proposal in honor of National Coming Out Day.

On Oct. 11, Duarte, a high school senior at Valley High School in Santa Ana, Calif., asked his straight friend Pineda, who is captain of the football team, to be his homecoming date.

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One Orlando Alliance names Board Chair Jennifer Foster as new Executive Director

By : Jeremy Williams
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ORLANDO | Jennifer Foster, who served as board chair for the One Orlando Alliance since formation, was named the organization’s founding executive director Oct. 11.

Foster’s appointment as the Alliance’s director comes on National Coming Out Day and during Orlando’s Pride Week — a weeklong celebration led by Alliance member Come Out With Pride.

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Come Out With Pride to keep Orlando dancing with this year’s parade, festival

By : Christen Kelley
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ABOVE: COWP’s Most Colorful Parade at downtown Orlando in 2017. Photo by Brian Becnel

ORLANDO | Come Out With Pride (COWP) is gearing up for its most colorful day of the year — its 14th annual Pride festival and parade held on Oct. 13.

Aligning with National Coming Out Day and LGBTQ History Month, COWP is one of the largest Pride events in Florida with over 160,000 attendees last year. COWP President Jeff Prystajko says there will likely be even more this year.

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Come OUT St. Pete returns with inaugural parade in second Pride-filled year

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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ST. PETERSBURG | Come OUT St. Pete (COSP) will return for its second outing with an inaugural parade and five days of events Oct. 4-11.

The organization’s mission is to inspire those in the LGBTQ community to live genuinely, raise awareness of LGBTQ issues and encourage public support from community allies. It began last year as a committee of the Grand Central District Association but has since applied for its own 501(c)(3) designation.

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The Fitness Marshall looks to take over the world one cardio-filled dance video at a time

By : Jeremy Williams
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Caleb Marshall is your typical Mid-Western, gay millennial. He loves his boyfriend Cameron, he loves his Starbucks coffee and he loves him some Britney Spears. Marshall stands out in his sometimes overly criticized generation as the fun-loving, energetic and infectious online persona known as The Fitness Marshall.

Dressed in his is trademark camo pants and black tank top, Marshall uses his part Richard Simmons/part Energizer Bunny character of The Fitness Marshall to motivate his millions (that’s right, millions!) of online viewers to dance, have fun and get in shape.

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Come Out With Pride wants you to keep dancing, but also to keep involved

By : Jeremy Williams
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Pride is a word that once carried a negative connotation. One of the original seven deadly sins, it was seen as something shameful and immoral. In the years after the 1969 riots at the Stonewall Inn in New York City, the word Pride was taken up as sign of honor, respect and loyalty by the LGBTQ community.

Pride became how we stood up for ourselves and celebrated who we are. Nearly 20 years later we celebrated the first National Coming Out Day Oct. 11, 1988. Pride was applied to something everyone in the community had to do no matter which letter you identified with in the LGBTQ spectrum. The significance of that day was to mark the one year anniversary of the 1987 National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights.

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