Watermark’s 2019 WAVEs nomination round – VOTE NOW

By : Watermark Staff
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Welcome to 2019! Fresh off the historic blue wave that swept progressives into political offices in Central Florida, Tampa bay and across the country; we bring you a wave of our own … the purple WAVE!!!

The Watermark Awards for Variety and Excellence, or the WAVEs for short, recognize the best in Central Florida and Tampa Bay’s LGBTQ community in the areas of activism, service, entertainment and more.

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Watermark’s WAVEs 2019 — Let your fans know to vote for you!

By : Watermark Staff
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The Watermark Awards for Variety and Excellence, or the WAVEs for short, recognize the best in Central Florida and Tampa Bay’s LGBTQ community in the areas of activism, service, entertainment and more.

There are 50 categories to vote in. In each category, we ask our readers to write in who best represents the values of the LGBTQ community in your area. It can be any person, group or business that falls anywhere in our alphabet soup — including allies — as long as they have demonstrated their support for the community.

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Watermark’s 2019 WAVEs – Tampa Bay/Sarasota nomination round

By : Watermark Staff
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Welcome to 2019! Fresh off the historic blue wave that swept progressives into political offices in Central Florida, Tampa Bay and across the country; we bring you a wave of our own … the purple WAVE!!!

The Watermark Awards for Variety and Excellence, or the WAVEs for short, recognize the best in Tampa Bay and Sarasota’s LGBTQ community in the areas of activism, service, entertainment and more.

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Samira Obeid: Poet and Community Advocate

By : Hannah Willard
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Hannah Willard

As an advocate, poet and friend, Sam Obeid embodies a quintessential feminist manifesto: “the personal is political.”

Sam weaves together her work and her life into a seamless tapestry of social justice. She oversees the ANYTOWN program of Community Tampa Bay, a youth leadership and diversity residential program. She is a celebrated poet and has delivered acclaimed spoken word performances worldwide. Recently, Sam became an involuntary spokesperson for our country’s broken immigration system, as she was caught in the crosshairs of Trump’s bigotry and forced to leave the country.

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TIGLFF names co-presidents for 30th year

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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TAMPA | The Tampa Bay International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (TIGLFF) has named 2018 board members Mariruth Kennedy and Ed Lally as co-presidents for the organization’s 30th year.

TIGLFF, one of the largest and longest-running festivals of its kind, exists to showcase a selection of compelling film and video by, for or about the LGBTQ community. Its 29th celebration entertained audiences with over 30 selections Oct. 5-13.

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The SMART Ride raises largest one-year total in 15 years for HIV/AIDS research

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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The SMART Ride, the only HIV/AIDS bicycle ride in the country of its size to donate 100 percent of funds raised to HIV/AIDS research, revealed Nov. 17 that it had raised a record $1,171,849 in its 15th year – the largest one-year total in the not for profit’s history.

Hundreds of riders from Jacksonville, Key West, Orlando, Palm Beach, Tampa Bay and across the nation completed the two-day, 165-mile bike ride from Miami to Key West Nov. 16-17. Each rider was tasked with raising at least $1,250.

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11.15.18 Tampa Bay Bureau Chief’s Desk

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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There are a few things people tend to figure out about me rather quickly, whether they get to know me well or only casually.

The first is that I’m into politics. Voting is rad, even more so when it’s done in the name of equality and every vote is counted. Second, I have a totally normal love and appreciation for (read: obsession with) Disney, particularly “The Little Mermaid.” I mean, how many wonders can one movie hold?

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2018 Midterm election LGBTQ Voters’ Guide

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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Electing ally candidates is critical. That’s why Watermark reached out to 154 men and women running for political office across Central Florida and Tampa Bay to ask five questions focusing on LGBTQ equality.

You’ll find the abbreviated answers of 33 respondents below: 24 Democrats, one Republican, one Libertarian and seven without a party affiliation. While the first question was open-ended, the subsequent four were yes or no and some candidates opted to elaborate.

To read Watermark’s full coverage about the equality-focused organizations, candidates and voters hoping to turn the tide Nov. 6, click here.

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Who was Most Remarkable in 2018?

By : Watermark Staff
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Toward the end of each year, Watermark highlights local, unsung heroes who have gone above and beyond to show with action just how remarkable they are.

We want our readers to help decide who deserves recognition for their inspiration, contribution or achievement in the 2018 calendar year. In honor of the year, we are looking for the 18 — 9 from Central Florida and 9 from Tampa Bay — Most Remarkable People of 2018.

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High Fidelity: Meet the Parents

By : Miguel Fuller
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Can we have a really serious conversation? Like, for real for real?

I am scared.

I am nervous.

I actually have no words.

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Watermark Wednesday – September Social

By : Danny Garcia
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Meet and mingle with the Watermark team, LGBTQ+ professionals and allies at the brand new G St. Pete.
During this event we will host a raffle drawing, so bring plenty of cash! All ticket sales will go directly to Suncoast Softball League! Your first drink is FREE and light bites will be provided.

Suncoast Softball League kicks off 26th year

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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The Suncoast Softball League, organized in 1993 to promote a safe environment for gay men and women in the Tampa Bay area to play softball, kicked off its 26th year Sept. 16.

“It’s hard to believe! A small handful of us were here on opening day 26 years ago,” the organization shared via social media. “We never imagined how successful the league would become; what an impact in the community it would have; the people and critters we would help year after year.”

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