December 1 is the day World AIDS Day is observed around the world. Right here in Florida, there are many events going on which raise awareness for this global killer. On this day, we reflect on the friends and family we’ve lost to AIDS, and we look forward to the day we find a cure. Each city recognizes World AIDS Day in different ways.
Here are some local events that you should attend. These events are all being held on Tuesday, December 1, unless otherwise specified.
Care Resource will be celebrating World AIDS Day with a week of testing, education, and events across Miami-Dade and Broward Counties. Testing will go on all week at a number of locations, including Care Resource’s offices at 3510 Biscayne Boulevard in Miami, the campuses of Miami-Dade College, and participating South Florida Walgreens locations. For more information, visit careresource.org.
The World AIDS Day Miami Bike Ride has been a success the last two years it has been held, and it is returning for a third year. On Sunday, November 29, bikers will embark on a 20-mile ride, beginning at Bayfront Park (301 N. Biscayne Blvd.). The bike ride will begin at 9:30 a.m. For more information, visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/WorldAIDSDay.Miami.Bike.Ride.
Miami Dade College’s Homestead campus will be hosting choreographer and dancer Pioneer Winter, whose performance “Reaching the Surface” will aim to educate audiences about HIV and AIDS. This free event will be held at 9:50 a.m. at room F – 222. There will be a number of other World AIDS Day events on the Homestead campus and the other MDC campuses as well. For more information, call Dr. Nicole Bryant at (305) 237-5223.
The World AIDS Museum and Educational Center will be running a new exhibit, which had its opening night just last week. “Owning Up: Stories of Poz Millennials” tells the stories of young people impacted by HIV in their own words. This exhibit can be viewed on World AIDS Day and through the entire month of December at 1201 NE 26th St., #111 in Fort Lauderdale. For more information, visit worldaidsmuseum.com.
At 7 p.m. on World AIDS Day, Broward House wishes to invite the community on a vigil and remembrance walk. It will begin at Hagen Park, and crowds will walk down Wilton Drive before ending at The Pride Center at Equality Park. At that time, there will be a remembrance speech, which will implore people to support one another and to be ever-vigilant in the fight against HIV and AIDS. This event is free to the public.
Compass Community Center will be hosting their annual World AIDS Day event, featuring the largest segment of the AIDS Memorial Quilt on display in the state of Florida. This year’s event is called the “Day With(out) Art” and starts at 6:30 p.m. Community artists and galleries will be placing their art on display. There will be a Voices of Pride musical performance, a candlelight vigil, a calling of the names lost, and an induction of the newest panels to the memorial quilt. For more information, call (561) 533-9699.
The Center Orlando, in association with Gilead, Target and Walgreens, present the World AIDS Day Candlelight Walk and Rally on Monday, November 30. People will meet at The Center (946 N. Mills Ave.) at 6:30 p.m. for the walk and there will be a rally at 7:15. There is no cost to attend this event and businesses and groups are encouraged to bring their own banners for the walk. Community partners for this event inclide Miracle of Love, the Zebra Coalition and the Hope and Help Center.
The Lake County Health Department is presenting the sixth annual World AIDS Day Celebration of Life from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Wednesday, December 2 at Donnelly Park in Mount Dora. There will be rapid HIV testing, free hepatitis shots, a viewing of the AIDS Memorial Quilt, and at least two dozen vendors. The theme for this event is “Getting to Zero, Zero new infections, Zero aids related deaths, and Zero discrimination.” For more information on this event, call (352) 771-5547.
Tampa Bay will be “rocking it RED!” once again. The Rock it RED! installation will begin to be installed on Monday, November 30 with a 1.25-mile red ribbon placed in 170 segments along Central Avenue between 16th and 31st Streets. The public will be able to see, sign, and leave pictures on any one of fifty trees wrapped in red ribbons along the Avenue. Those signed trees will later be made into the AIDS Wall of Remembrance. The installation will be up through Monday, December 1, when Metro Wellness and Community Centers’ LGBT Welcome Center (2227 Central Ave.) will hold a candlelight vigil, starting at 7 p.m.
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