Following controversy, Sarasota Pride renews focus ahead of Pride Fest 2017

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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SARASOTA | As the Sarasota LGBTQ community and its allies readied themselves for Pride Fest 2017 on Oct. 21, Sarasota Pride board members and community leaders met to renew the upcoming celebration’s focus.

“Perception is a reality and the past 48 hours has proven that statement to be true,” Joél Pozo, Berry Ayers (Beneva Fruitville) and Sarasota Pride released in a joint statement following an Oct. 3 meeting. “Everyone in this community has a voice and that has been reflected in our collaboration.”

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From coast-to-coast, Central Florida and Tampa Bay celebrate Pride in the fall

By : Jeremy Williams
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Many people think of the month of June when someone says Pride, but thanks to National Coming Out Day and the state’s cooler temperatures, October is fast becoming Florida’s big Pride month.

Whether you are looking to march through the streets or spend a few hours in the park with your friends, October has got a Pride for you.

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Issue 23.20: Sarasota Pride

By : Jake Stevens
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Pride of Place: Sarasota Pride stays the course in the face of tragedy, OADO returns: anti-discrimination group to focus on gun reform, local news, celebrity interviews, photos, events and much, much more!

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Sarasota Pride stays the course in the face of tragedy

By : Greg Stemm
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The shock waves that continue to ripple through the LGBTQ community in the aftermath of the tragic shootings at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando on June 12 have had a profound effect on Sarasota Pride. In fact, according to Cindy Barnes, who has served as the head of Sarasota Pride for nine years, the event wouldn’t even be happening at all this year if Pulse hadn’t taken place. Sarasota Pride is scheduled from 12 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, October 15 at J.D. Hamel Park.

“The board of directors had already made the decision that Sarasota Pride in its current form would be suspended this year, and we would focus on producing four smaller events throughout the year,” Barnes says. “Actually I was on vacation out of state when I heard what had happened in Orlando. I felt right away that there was no way we could not have a full Pride celebration in light of what had happened. I got on the phone right away with board members and, with a full court push, we were able to obtain vendors and entertainers at the last minute and to move ahead with producing the event. But if Pulse had never happened, things would be a lot different with Sarasota Pride than they are now.”

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10.6.16 Editor’s Desk

By : Billy Manes
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Billy Manes

Billy Manes

Betwixt the cacophonous roars of television-news hurricane paranoia – “It’s comin’ right fer us!!!” – and the horrific thought of a swoop of pumpkin hair covering a megalomaniac with a distinct lack of scruples – also, coming right for us, if we’re not careful – it’s hard to imagine that this issue finds us straddling two pride celebrations in their own whirlwinds of flux. Maybe that’s a good thing. It’s a life of surprises, after all. We don’t always want to read the last page first.

For me, personally, Pride celebrations carry with them so many memories of letting go, feeling free (to be, you and me, etc.) and sweating my ass off until the rain comes and turns my head into artificial crab meat fit for the breaking, wanly dripping down a drain. But this year, of course, is different.

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Issue 23.16: Badges of Courage

By : Jake Stevens
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Local authorities across Central Florida and Tampa Bay aim in the direction of tolerance, not discrimination, the OneOrlando fund reachers for public transparency, Sarasota Pride moves forward, will honor Pulse victims, South Florida restaurant defends transgender employee, local news, celebrity interviews, photos, events and much, much more!

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Sarasota Pride to move forward, will honor Pulse victims

By : Krista DiTucci
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SARASOTA – Cindy Barnes has been the face of Sarasota Pride for almost a decade. But a few months ago, Barnes had made the decision to step down as Pride director. However, her plan to resign recently took an unexpected turn.

Edward “Eddie” Sotomayor was one of the 49 victims killed in the Pulse shooting. Sotomayor was a Sarasota native and actively involved in Pride. Just before the shooting, he and Barnes arranged for a lunch meeting the following week to discuss Sarasota Pride’s future and Barnes’ decision not to continue with Pride. Sadly, Sotomayor was killed before the meeting took place.

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Sarasota Pride 2015

By : Jamie Hyman
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Sarasota celebrates the 26th annual Pridefest in J.D. Hamel Park Saturday, Oct. 17.

The theme was “Color the World with Pride,” and the festival ran from 2 – 6 p.m.

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Sarasota looks to “Color the World with Pride”

By : Jeremy Williams
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Sarasota celebrates the 26th annual Pridefest in J.D. Hamel Park Saturday, Oct. 17.

Themed “Color the World with Pride,” this year’s festival will kick off at high noon with a performance from the all-female troupe The Cheaters.

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10.8.15 Editor’s Desk

By : Billy Manes
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“Turn and face the strange,” a certain crazy-eyed pop-cultural god once warned us through the bedazzled bullhorn of a 1970s rainbow of weathered hope. “Ch-ch-changes” were at the root of David Bowie’s 1972 rhythmic cause for alarm and call to arms, a sort of anthemic response to a society teetering on various brinks, with only the scary monsters and super freaks holding on to any notion of prescribed normality. Everything – from war crises to social shifts to women’s rights to gay rights – was caught in the shuffle, and, these days, we’re better for it, right? Plate tectonics, changing fads, political upheaval and shifts in the weather have all resulted in who we are right now. And, in many ways, we are better for it. In some, we are far worse.

This week’s Watermark explores the changes we’re going through, both nuanced and on the real-estate surface, against the backdrop of Orlando’s Come Out With Pride celebration, of which we are always proud to be a part. While many, including those of us making journalistic noise at this publication, are urging caution in just how the LGBT community evolves from dissimilation to assimilation, how we negotiate our path into the grand old world of marriage and acceptance and infinite joy, we’re also aware of the shoulders upon which we’ve stood to get us here, even to get us in the conversation. You’ve heard this lecture before: Don’t forget from where you’ve come and never forget the history upon which you stand. You get it.

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Sarasota’s Cindy Barnes celebrates final Pride as chairman

By : Jeremy Williams
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Cindy BarnesSarasota, Fla. — After six years as the chairman of Sarasota Pride, Cindy Barnes will step down after the festival in J.D. Hamel Park Oct. 17.

“This is my last year of running it. I will remain on the board, but you know I’m hoping someone will step up and take this over,” Barnes says. “It’s about 20 hours a week, and it’s, of course, a volunteer job, so I have to say the call for a leader has been out about six months and I have yet to hear from a soul.”

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Sarasota Pride 2015 Guide

By : Jake Stevens
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The fabulous Sarasota Pride 2014 Guide: Color the World with PRIDE!

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