Featured GaYBOR Member of the Week…The Flamingo Auto Group (FAG) has become a staple of all major GLBT events in Florida. The club has open membership for anyone, guys or girls who are interested in cars, whether they be classic, new or anything in between! Did you know that the Tampa Bay-based group has actually broken off and started two more clubs in Florida? There are now clubs in Orlando/east-central Florida (C-FAG) & south Florida (So-FAG).
Mark and Carrie’s “Nephew/Niece of the Week”: Paul Kramer
A graduate of USF, Paul is now engaged to Tessa Shiver. We are all so excited for the happy couple.
Featured GaYBOR Member of the Week
Flamingo Auto Group
The Flamingo Auto Group (FAG) has become a staple of all major GLBT events in Florida. The club has open membership for anyone, guys or girls who are interested in cars, whether they be classic, new or anything in between! Did you know that the Tampa Bay-based group has actually broken off and started two more clubs in Florida? There are now clubs in Orlando/east-central Florida (C-FAG) & south Florida (So-FAG).
Bigger Than Ever…St. Pete Pride
Celebrities, politicians, cars, businesses, marching groups, floats and of course the Wells Fargo Bank’s team of horses with the stagecoach all celebrated at this year’s St. Pete Pride Festival. Over 140 groups were in this year’s GLBT pride parade and over 300 street festival vendors were set up along eight blocks on Central Avenue. It turned out to be the largest-ever event in the festival’s history. It was a bit rainy at times but out of the over 150,000 attendees, it seemed like no one really wanted to leave. This was an increase of the estimated 100,000 expected to be there.
The week was strong with jubilant sentiment regarding the two U.S. Supreme Court rulings dealing with DOMA and California’s Prop 8. The courts have decided in favor of the GLBT cause in both cases. Joyous victory celebrations occurred throughout the weekend at St. Pete Pride.
The court decisions brought even more people out to the Pride event and it ended up being a record-breaker. This was the first time in the 11-year history that rain poured on the parade but it did little to overshadow all the great news stories of the week.
Mark and I were truly honored to be this years St. Pete Pride Grand Marshals.
Congratulations to Pride’s Executive Director Erik Skains as well as to the board and volunteers of this years St. Pete Pride festivities.
Mayor Buckhorn’s Dream
What an exciting week for the GLBT community and Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn. First, at the Annual GaYBOR Mayor’s Luncheon last Thursday, he was honored by the GaYBOR District Coalition with a standing ovation. He was given the GaYBOR Award for the positive contributions he has given to our local community.
The well-attended event had the mayor speaking about the diversity Tampa has had and still shows in all the citizens. “It was just one of many things the world noticed at last years Republican National Convention in Tampa.”
The revitalization of the Hillsborough River as the center of Tampa activity and not a barrier to Tampa’s new growth was echoed throughout the mayor’s speech. He consistently talked of Tampa’s time in the national spotlight and how, through his works, he is trying to live by the old 1980s tourism slogan, “Tampa: America’s Next Great City.”
He recognized the hard work and positive direction GaYBOR District has on Tampa’s economy, helping influence recent changes by the Hillsborough County Commissioners to the eight-year-old gay pride ban. He also referred to Tampa’s long record for embracing diversity to lure businesses looking to relocate or add a satellite site to the area.