Orlando Gay Chorus to welcome the holiday season with ‘Sleigh Queen’

By : Lora Korpar
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ORLANDO | The Orlando Gay Chorus (OGC) will be performing their annual holiday performance that they promise will “put the jingle in your bells” on Dec. 14 and 15.

Titled “Sleigh Queen,” the concert will feature a variety of holiday music, featuring everything from Christmas classics like “Run, Run, Rudolph” to songs by Sia and Eric Whitacre. There will also be a special guest appearance by “one who knows a thing or two about reindeer games,” according to a press release.

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Watermark’s Wedding Bells: Carlos Guillermo Smith and Jerick Mediavilla

By : Marianella Falbo
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“When we met and we first started flirting, in my mind I couldn’t accept that someone so sweet, so kind, and so handsome would actually take an interest in me that had NOTHING to do with politics,” says Florida Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith.

Carlos met Jerick Mediavilla at The Venue in Orlando during an event supporting the Latinx community impacted by the Pulse shooting in 2016.

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Central Florida LGBTQ pioneer Joel Strack passes away at age 59

By : Jeremy Williams
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ABOVE: Joel Strack at his celebration of life at Leu Gardens in Orlando June 23. (Photo by J.D. Casto)

ORLANDO | Joel Strack—an LGBTQ leader, activist and pioneer in Central Florida’s fight for equality— passed away in the early morning hours of July 15. He was 59.

Strack was instrumental in launching what would become known as Gay Day at the Magic Kingdom, helped create Orlando’s first Pride parade and assisted in founding both the Orlando Gay Chorus and the Gay and Lesbian History Museum.

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PHOTOS: Central Florida LGBTQ trailblazer Joel Strack honored with proclamation from City of Orlando

By : Jeremy Williams
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ORLANDO | Joel Strack has been an out and proud leader, activist and trailblazer in the Central Florida LGBTQ community for over 40 years.

Strack was instrumental in launching what would become known as Gay Day at the Magic Kingdom, helped create Orlando’s first Pride parade and assisted in founding both the Orlando Gay Chorus and the Gay and Lesbian History Museum.

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PHOTOS: One Orlando Alliance holds ‘Love and Kindness’ event, announces new Barnie’s coffee honoring Pulse victims

By : Jeremy Williams
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ORLANDO | One Orlando Alliance gathered people at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Orlando for “Love and Kindness on the Lawn” on June 9.

The event was to honor the spirit of #OrlandoUnited!, and featured food trucks, games and dancing as well as performances by Jasmin Rhia, Melissa Crispo, the Orlando Gay Chorus and Pulse survivors Joshua Lewis and Vico Baez Febo.

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Watermark Giveaway: Tickets for Tinsel in Technicolor!

By : Meghan Sweeney
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Our latest giveaway will have you singing “joy to the world!” Watermark is giving away two tickets to the Orlando Gay Chorus ‘Tinsel in Technicolor’ Dec. 15 show at 7:30 pm and two tickets to their Dec. 16 show at 4:30 pm.

To enter, comment down below what your favorite Christmas song is and which show date you can attend. We will select the winners on Dec. 12 at noon. 

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PHOTOS: The LGBT+ Center of Central Florida celebrates 40 years with Studio 54 concert

By : Danny Garcia
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ORLANDO | The LGBT+ Center of Central Florida celebrated its 40th anniversary with a concert at The Plaza Live on Nov. 3.

The Studio 54-themed event was hosted by Jorge Estevez and featured showstopping musical and dance numbers by the Orlando Gay Chorus, a sensual burlesque dance from VarieTEASE’s Blue Star, Tymisha Harris and the Ladyboys’ Gadiel Vazquez, hysterical drag by Gidget Galore and a once-in-a-lifetime special performance from one of the queens of disco, Martha Wash.

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The LGBT+ Center of Central Florida celebrates 40 years with a Studio 54-inspired party

By : Jeremy Williams
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ORLANDO | The LGBT+ Center of Central Florida has undergone several name and location changes in its 40-year history, but the mission has always remained the same.

“The focus since the beginning was always advocacy, making sure there was a voice for the community and socialization,” says George Wallace, The Center’s current executive director.

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PHOTOS: Mayors Dyer and Jacobs declare June 12 Orlando United Day at Pulse ceremony

By : Jeremy Williams
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ORLANDO | Hundreds gathered at the Pulse memorial June 12 to honor and remember the 49 lives lost just two years ago within the nightclub at the memorial’s location.

The crowd watched performances from the Orlando Gay Chorus, Blue Star, the Orlando Philharmonic and more.

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Watermark Giveaway: Tickets to see the Orlando Magic on Valentine’s Day

By : Maia Monet
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Looking for something special to do with your sweetie on Valentine’s Day? Watermark is giving away two pairs of ticket to see the Orlando Magic on Pride Night, Feb. 14 at 7pm at the Amway Center! Enjoy the game vs the Charlotte Hornets from Ultimate Seats inside the first seven rows of the court. Show your LGBTQ pride as you listen to the Orlando Gay Chorus at halftime. When you and your date get hungry, order from the available in-seat waiter service or head to the Fields Ultimate Lounge. The exclusive lounge has free beverage service including beer, wine, and soda as well as complimentary meat carving stations and a grab-and-go candy wall.

To enter, comment on this post and tell us the name of your favorite Magic player. More details after the jump.

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2016 was the worst year ever, and 2017 was the year we found our footing

By : Jeremy Williams
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In these very pages one year ago we proclaimed 2016 to be the worst year ever. It started off with so much promise and optimism, with the official passing of the torch as the former owner of Watermark turned the reins over to new owner Rick Claggett and Watermark Media became Watermark Publishing Group.

President Barack Obama was heading into the final year of his second term and everything seemed in place for another torch to be passed, that of the first black president passing the country off to the first female president.

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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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