Tampa Pride Grand Marshal Gala
Tampa Police Chief Jane Castor and Hamburger Mary’s owner Kurt King were chosen for the Inaugural 2015 Tampa Pride Grand Marshals.The special gala event was held at Cristino’s Italian Coal Oven Pizza Restaurant in Ybor City. Transformed into an evening under the stars, over 200 invitees made their way into the first of many Tampa Pride events. Tampa Pride’s Parade & Vendor Festival is set for March 28th in Ybor City.
A large assortment of Italian appetizers and specialty drinks were served. Cristino’s Restaurant’s staff, and manager Michael Wilson, did a great job in hospitality and the assorted Italian food selection.
Tampa Police Chief Jane Castor just returned that evening from testifying in Washington, D.C. in front of a Congressional hearing. She was introduced by Renee Warmack. “I am so honored by the community for such an honor.” the chief told the group. An attendee shouted out that we were honored to have her as a community leader!
The second Tampa Pride Grand Marshal was introduced by longtime friend and fellow softball player Gerre Reynolds. That honoree is Hamburger Mary’s owner Kurt King. Touching the attendees’ hearts, he made mention that “a lot of gays and straight people didn’t want Tampa Pride to happen, but it did by committed individuals throughout Tampa Bay!”
He added that he was “honored to be selected and very thankful to the hundreds of companies, organizations and individuals that came forward in support. This is going to be a really great festival.”
Both the Grand Marshals received beautifully engraved Tampa Pride plaques with rainbow glass on the edges. The grand marshal duo will be honorees at the upcoming VIP Sponsors’ Party and the big Tampa Pride Parade & Festival on Saturday, March 28th, from 1-3:30.
Miss Tampa Pride Emeritus was chosen and it went to Miss Esme Russell. She has been an entertainer for over 25 years. She is a greeter at Hamburger Mary’s Ybor, a weekly radio personality and just an all-around positive and fun person. She addressed the group by saying, “I was the first transgender person to come out in Hillsborough County Schools. My parents sued the Board of Education and won, letting me be a girl in the public schools!” Loud thunderous applause and cheers rang out in support of Esme.
To support Tampa Pride, or to learn about all the events planned, visit TampaPride.org.
You Just Can’t Make This Stuff Up!
One late Sunday, Tea Cup had closed the balcony. He started to clean up and was in the process of hosing down the balcony. A man appeared on the steps and introduced himself as the proprietor of the new bar below. He actually said with a straight face to Tea Cup, a gay man, “Do you realize that you are dripping into my corn holes on the sidewalk below?”
With a surprised look Tea Cup said, “I think I know what you’re trying to say. The game…right?” LMAO.
Chou Chou & Tiffany’s Ybor Wedding
The much-talked about wedding of Ybor City was held on February 18. Chou Chou Guilder and Tiffany Erica became one! The wedding, on the Radiant Oil Company outside patio, had 400 invitees reveling and listening to the two girls make commitments in a most beautiful setting.
The spectacular wedding party had 12 attendees on each side participating. The princess duo both wore matching white Vera Wang wedding dresses. The reception was set up at The Honey Pot. This is the place Chou Chou has worked for over eight years. The usual dance floor was totally covered in red carpet, with a clear gazebo and wood floor with a sparkling chandelier in the center of the normal floor. White roses were everywhere with patterned wedding paper on individual squares all around the bar.
Congratulations to a great couple, who share their lives with so many.