Watermark’s Most Remarkable People of 2017

By : Watermark Staff
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In a year filled with many setbacks and obstacles, the LGBTQ communities in Central Florida and Tampa Bay have met those challenges with amazing resilience and resisted all forms of discrimination.

The individuals selected as Watermark’s Most Remarkable People of 2017 come from many walks of life but all share one thing in common, they all were truly exceptional this year.

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Watermark’s Most Remarkable People 2017: Pamela Schwartz, Orange County Regional History Center’s Chief Curator

By : Teresa Jacobs, Orange County Mayor
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Teresa Jacobs

It’s an honor and privilege to celebrate Pamela Schwartz as a 2017 “Remarkable Person.”

In the early hours after the Pulse Nightclub massacre, when we were reeling with anguish and disbelief from the brutal attack on our LGBTQ, Latinx and Hispanic communities and the unimaginable loss of 49 innocent souls, one person was already thinking about how we could help memorialize the staggering loss and remember the innocent victims. That was Pam Schwartz, who by the next day, had already outlined a plan for the collection and preservation of the tribute items that she knew would come.

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Orange County Regional History Center launches One Orlando Collection’s Pulse exhibit, digital gallery

By : Jeremy Williams
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The Orange County Regional History Center has displayed hundreds of Pulse memorial items in an exhibit for the One Orlando Collection. The exhibit can be viewed at the History Center from June 12-17. Admission to the History Center has been waived during this period.

The collection can also be viewed in their digital gallery, currently at more than 600 pieces and continuing to grow every day. The online gallery can be viewed at OneOrlandoCollection.com.

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Orlando’s Overheard: Hate signs, Digital Pulse and the new Center

By : Anonymous
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Preach Love Not Hate

From drag queens to bears, we know what to expect at a Pride event. Some of those expectations are the religious fanatics usually protesting in their designated sections.

Unfortunately, on Monday, June 12, a day of remembrance for the 49 victims of the Pulse shooting, approximately three “Christians” showed up with hateful signs and words.

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How the Orange County Regional History Center is helping preserve the memories from the Pulse shooting

By : Alma J. Hill
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It’s hard to wrap your mind around the Pulse massacre if you’ve lived in Orlando for any amount of time, but especially over the past year. On April 29, representatives from the Orange County Regional History Center – including executive director Michael Perkins and curator of exhibitions and collections Pamela Schwartz, among others – spoke to the difficulties of preserving the integrity and the heart of the tributes left outside of Pulse Orlando: the flowers, the candles, the messages and photographs.

If candles melted onto fabric, electric irons were employed to remove the wax. Dilapidated flowers, washed words, stuffed animals, so many pictures and flags and feelings had to be gathered to commemorate those who were killed in plain view, killed in a nightclub, killed for being LGBTQ or at least being friendly with those who were. It would be a delicate task of peeling photos from frames, flowers from vases and quilts from fences.

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Remembering Pulse six months later

By : Watermark Staff
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Though it still remains so fresh in our minds and equally hard to believe, the six-month marker of the hate crime that shook Orlando, and indeed the whole world, is coming quickly.

Monday, Dec. 12, several events will be popping up to honor the 49 killed and the 53 injured on June 12 at Pulse Orlando. Some of us at Watermark are still numbed by the incident, and many in the community are still grieving. But, as we do, we will carry on with vigilance and with respect for those who left us far too soon in far too ugly a manner.

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2016 World AIDS Day events round-up

By : Watermark Staff
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The 28th Annual World AIDS Day is Dec. 1. From the early morning hours of that day at the YMCA in Ocala to the not-as-early morning hours of Saturday’s AIDS Walk in St. Pete, the community will be honoring the memories and celebrating the lives of those impacted by HIV/AIDS.

World AIDS Day is held on the first of December each year and is an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, show their support for people living with HIV and to commemorate people who have died. World AIDS Day was the first ever global health day, held for the first time in 1988.

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New fence around Pulse will commemorate victims

By : Staff Report
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Pulse nightclub will be receiving a new fence around it’s perimeter that will be put up with the combined effort of the Pulse owners, the City of Orlando, the Downtown South Main Street District and the Orange County Regional History Center, according to a press release.

The fence will be erected Sept. 19, and will feature a wrap to showcase art from local artists.

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