Niece of the Week: Christi van Os-Ghey

Meet Christi, a community activist who leads by example. She is active in GaYBOR, Tampa Pride, Girls in Wonderland and currently working at Channelside Entertainment. When she asks you for community support, give it to her. She really understands our community.

You Just Can’t Make This Stuff Up!

We were on a trip to New Orleans. Carrie found a small hotel in a great location in the French Quarter. As we were checking in a guest walked up and said, “Excuse me, there is somebody having sex in our room.”

The clerk smiled and said, “Oops, I must have given you the wrong room.”

When we checked into our walk-up room, the first thing we noticed was how oversized the furniture was for such a small room. The door to the bathroom hit the bed and only opened halfway.

The bathroom had some water problems. Parts of the drywall had been replaced and not re-painted. Then we noticed the chain on the door. It was broken off.

The next day we were looking for a place to charge our cell phone when we made a very unusual discovery. There were two passports tucked in at the foot of the bed. They looked like the same person with different names and dates of birth. Most unusual were the hundreds of countries she had been to in both passports.

After we sought out much advice as to what to do with them, we gave them to the hotel clerk’s desk and had them turned over to the authorities.

President Obama Sends a Letter to Tampa Pride

Everyone in Tampa Bay noticed Tampa Pride last March, and the President of the United States, Barack Obama, noticed too! He sent us a thoughtful letter recognizing our work and accomplishments in Tampa.

Polk Pride 2015

The first outdoor Pride event for Polk Pride was a huge success. Scott Guira, Lakeland Youth Alliance coordinator and organizer of the weekend Pride event, alongside Pride committee leaders, were all given a commendation by Lakeland City Commissioners James Malless and Justin Troller on stage at the beginning of the Pride in the Park that was set in Munn Park in downtown Lakeland.

The weekend kicked off on Friday with flamboyant movie and TV star, comedian Leslie Jordan, performing to a packed crowd at the Polk Theatre.

Saturday’s festival, Pride in the Park, had a large number of business and non-profit vendors from around Central Florida. Also in attendance were a long list of entertainers, musical groups and a side street full of food trucks.

Congratulations to Polk County on showing LGBT diversity in smaller communities.

Play Ball! Tampa Bay Rays’ First-Ever Pride Night Out

The first-ever Tampa Bay Rays Pride Night Out at Tropicana Field was a big success. A portion of the night’s ticket sales will be given back to the area’s LGBT community groups.

The event was a big hit, with almost 800 LGBT men, women and families attending the game, in which the Rays played the Chicago White Sox. Special baseball hats were given to the LGBT baseball fans.

Nadine Smith, Executive Director of Equality Florida, threw out the opening pitch. Crescendo Women’s Chorus sang the national anthem. Sally Phillips, Ercillia, Judy B. Goode, Mark Eary, Dish-3026_copyBrad, Mike and Scott, and Carrie West were all there watching the game. It was a great night out. The Rays won!

LGBT community organizations attending included Tampa Pride, Equality Florida, Metro Wellness and Community Centers, Manatee Pride, Crescendo and St. Pete Pride.