Archive for August, 2009

LGBT Leadership Training Available

August 28, 2009

Starting this September, the LGBT Community Center, the Equity for Gays and Lesbians (EGAL) Task Force, and The Foundation for Enhancing Communities (TFEC) will be offering a series of training sessions geared toward providing organizational and leadership development to the community.

As the leaders in the LGBT and allied communities, you are invited to participate.
The series covers a range of topics (listed below), and sessions will be facilitated by Anne Gingerich from the Nonprofit Resource Network at Millersville University and Mickey McIntyre from realChange Partners.

This will be an opportunity for the LGBT organizations in central Pennsylvania to not only gain a valuable training experience, but to network and build a sense of shared mission. There will be a suggested donation of $10 to be donated to the EGAL Endowment Fund, which grants money to local LGBT organizations.

Call the Center at 920-9534 or email with any inquiries.

Event Details
Where: All sessions will be held at St. Michael and All Angels Episcopal Church (Ann St & Grant St, Middletown, PA 17057).

When: Introduction to the series – Wednesday, 9/16/09, 6:30-7:30 pm

Session 1 – Saturday, 10/03/09, 9:00 am-noon
(First Steps in Program Development)

Session 2 – Saturday, 11/07/09, 9:00 am-noon
(Finding and Maintaining a Facility)

Session 3 – Saturday, 12/05/09, 9:00 am-noon
(Creating Your Identity: Communications & Marketing)

Session 4 – Saturday, 01/09/10, 9:00 am-noon
(Strategic Affiliations for the LGBT Community)

Session 5 – Saturday, 02/06/10, 9:00 am-noon
(Making Your Case: Fundraising)

Session 6 – Saturday, 03/06/10, 9:00 am-noon
(Effective Volunteer Management)

Please call the LGBT Community Center for more information or with questions regarding the event details: (717) 920-9534

RSVP Details
Please coordinate within your organizations to send 1-2 representatives to each session in order to maximize the effectiveness of our time together. RSVP’s must be received by the Wednesday before each session. Due to limited space, an RSVP is required to attend this series.

To RSVP Contact:
Sean Maloney, Interim Program Director
LGBT Community Center
(717) 920-9534

Our Price: $10/training (May be paid in advance or at the door) Checks can be made payable to:
TFEC – EGAL Endowment Fund

Community Center Calls for GSA Program Ideas

August 26, 2009

From Louie Marven, Director of Administration and Youth Services, LGBT Community Center Coalition of Central Pennsylvania

(717) 920-9534

Louis Marven headshotHello friends,
I’m pleased to announce that our Third Annual GSA Leadership Summit will take place on Friday, February 26, 2010 at Dickinson College. Many of you have participated in this event in some capacity over the past couple years, whether you moderated a session, served on a panel, or volunteered to help the day run smoothly. Thank you for your continued support.

For this year’s event, we have issued a call for proposals (attached) to try and garner a variety of workshops—both in topic and format—from a diverse group of presenters. I am asking you to consider submitting a proposal for a workshop at this year’s Summit and to disseminate this call far and wide—to folks you think might be interested in submitting a proposal and to listservs that reach potentially interested parties. I’ve also attached a list of last year’s workshops to give people unfamiliar with this event an idea of what has been done. If it’s easier, you can pass along the link to this information on our website:

Remember, the GSA Leadership Summit is the only event of its kind in central Pennsylvania, where LGBTQA students and professionals have a day-long safe space to share stories, learn new skills, and work toward making central Pennsylvania a more welcoming place for all people. Thanks in advance for your help in spreading the word!

Harrisburg Gay Bars Host Customer Appreciation Picnic

August 23, 2009

PHOTOS – August 23 Stallion’s Entertainment Complex teamed up with all the downtown Harrisburg gay bars – Strawberry, Brownstone and Neptune’s Lounge – for a Customer Appreciation Picnic.

“It’s a free day for our customers to enjoy themselves on us, the gay bars of Harrisburg,” said lead organizer Stallion’s DJ Barry. This year included all ages. “In the past we had only invited 21 and older.” The event often draws as many as 300-400 and treats customers with free beer, soda, food, entertainment, swimming pool, and volleyball. The event was held at a private picnic grounds location

LGBT Center Unveils Book Club

August 10, 2009

The Center’s Book Clubs will meet at locations in Harrisburg, Lancaster and York, and will meet once a month.

Please contact Sean Maloney, Interim Program Director, or
920-9534 to join one of these groups or start a new group in your area.

During September and October, all three book clubs will start with the two books below. Following these two selections, members of the club will chose from a list that they help create for two months ahead at a time

September Book: A Seahorse Year by Stacey D’Erasmo

D’Erasmo’s second novel, the follow-up to her acclaimed “Tea”, tells a story about love at the very edge: about the things people do out of love, the unexpected risks of intimacy, and how families shatter and re-form under duress. This quiet, penetrating novel follows a San Francisco family coping with a 16-year-old son’s mental illness. Christopher’s mom, Nan, is in a long-term relationship with girlfriend Marina, who’s like another mom; his sperm donor dad, Hal, is gay, a dancer-turned-CPA. As D’Erasmo shifts between different points of view (distinct, but united by her lush prose) she paints a portrait of illness, but also of growth and change.

October Book: Light Falls by Evan Fallenberg

When literature professor Joseph Licht invites his five adult sons to celebrate his 50th birthday in 1996 Tel Aviv, he hopes to win his boys’ love and forgiveness by plying them with their favorite foods. From that opening in Fallenberg’s ambitious debut, Joseph’s life unfolds in retrospect: 20 years earlier, as a married father of five, Joseph discovers he is gay as he falls in love with a charismatic, and married, rabbi. The rabbi kills himself not long after he and Joseph start their affair, and a crushed Joseph, in one fell swoop, jettisons his marriage and adherence to Modern Orthodox Judaism. The familial repercussions are myriad and extreme, leaving Joseph’s wife bereft and his sons with issues that range from low self-esteem and lack of trust to fanatical nationalism and religiosity.

While Joseph and the rabbi’s lovemaking is sentimentalized, and Joseph’s and one son’s homosexual awakenings seem abrupt, Fallenberg’s descriptions of Israeli life, from the rural and academic arenas to the gay milieu, are credible and absorbing. The book adroitly sketches the heartfelt struggles of a sympathetic cast.

Men4Men a Hit at Pride – At Stallions & Altland’s Ranch Next

August 6, 2009

Men4Men a Hit at Pride
At Stallions & Altland’s Ranch Next
By David Payne

I wanted to thank everyone who visited the Men4Men booth during Harrisburg Pride. We distributed lots of information about our services and upcoming events.

Men4MenlogoWe also received good feedback for our mobile rapid testing events, as well as the testing that was going on that day. When we let people know that testing was being offered, close to two dozen signed up that day, and many others asked us about testing events in the future.
This tells us that our public is responsive to these types of activities, which is a good reason to schedule several similar events in the future.

This month we’ll be attending “Tuxedo Night at Stallions” Aug. 21.

Next month you’ll see us Sept. 12 Altland’s Ranch, 8505 Orchard Road, Spring Grove from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.

On Sept. 21, we’ll be at MCC of the Spirit, 2973 Jefferson St, Harrisburg from noon to 5 p.m. We’re also working with Vision of Hope MCC, Main Street, Mountville, Lancaster County, for a testing event.

In the meantime, I’ll continue to make the rounds of the bars and clubs in Dauphin, Lancaster, and York counties, hand out safer sex kits and answer any questions or address concerns.

I also wanted to mention something about younger men.

According to the CDC men between the ages of 13 and 24 accounted for 54-percent of new HIV infections in the US between 2003 and 2006. It’s more important than ever for younger men to know their status and we continue to develop and provide effective messages to explain the importance of knowing one’s HIV status.

Look for us on Facebook and MySpace, join our group and become fans of the Men4Men page. Let us know what’s on your mind when it comes to staying healthy and maintaining good sexual relationships. Tell us how you think we can get through to people.

Some of the materials we’re distributing are designed to catch your eye and surprise you, but it’s also designed to get people thinking, and, more importantly, talking. We want to know if it’s working and most importantly what it will take for people to decrease their risk of HIV by moving towards more healthy sexual behavior.

I recently received a call from the leadership at Common Roads, the Harrisburg area’s GLBTQ youth group and affiliated with The LGBT Community Center Coalition. They have offered their assistance in putting together safer sex kits which we use as part of our outreach to the community. My thanks to Louie Marven and all the youth at Common Roads.

Recent advances in HIV medications may be sending a mixed message. While it’s always encouraging to read stories of people once near death now thriving thanks to the meds, many younger men are under the impression that AIDS is over, or that if they get infected, they’re only a pill away from continued good health, hot having to worry about getting sick. We need to continue emphasizing the message HIV/AIDS is still an incurable disease; that medications, while effective are expensive and carry side effects, and HIV/AIDS is still 100-percent preventable.

Our mission is an ongoing – to reach our target population (men who have sex with men) wherever they are and in as many effective ways we can.

Contact: David Payne @; 717-233-7190. M4M is a component of AIDS Community Alliance.

Gunman Kills 2, Injures 15 in Gay Centers

August 4, 2009

Demonstrations Continue
by Rex Wockner

[Updated 3 Aug, 19:59 PDT] A gunman sprayed bullets at a youth meeting in the basement of one of Tel Aviv’s two gay centers Aug. 1, killing two people and injuring as many as 15, some seriously.

Killed were Nir Katz, 26, and Liz Troubishi, 16. Katz worked with the youth group as a counselor.

The shooter, who escaped, was masked and wearing black clothing.

Minister of Public Security Yitzhak Aharonovitch and others said the attack on the “Cafe Youth” social and support gathering at the clubhouse of the Israeli Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Association appeared to be a hate crime.

Demonstrations were staged in several Israeli cities Sunday in response to the attack, said Yonatan Gher, executive director of Jerusalem Open House for Pride and Tolerance. Some 500 people rallied in Jerusalem’s Zion Square and there reportedly were smaller protests in Haifa and Beersheba.

Saturday at 8 p.m. there will be a large demonstration in Tel Aviv’s Rabin Square. The event’s Facebook page showed 589 confirmed attendees as of Monday evening.

Thousands marched the night of the shootings in a spontaneous outpouring of grief (video above).

GLBT public actions also have taken place, or been announced, in Montreal; London; New York City; Washington, D.C.; Los Angeles and San Francisco.

“We will not step back into the dark closet, we shall not be terrorized,” said openly gay Member of the Knesset Nitzan Horowitz, according to a translation provided by the Israeli Consulate General in New York City. “We will carry on marching in Tel Aviv, in Jerusalem and in every other city or town. … Years of incitement from politicians, Rabbis and public officials have materialized into this tragedy. We shall not forgive nor forget them.”

Other statements released by the consulate included:

President Shimon Peres: “This heinous murder of youth and teenagers is an act that a civilized nation cannot tolerate. Murder and hate are two of the most appalling crimes against society. I call the police to do its utmost to catch this vile murderer. I call all the citizens of Israel to denounce this crime.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu: “… I would like to take this opportunity to remind all Israelis that ours is a democratic state. We are a nation of law. Ours is a country built on tolerance and we must respect all people as they are.”

Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai: “We will continue offering the LGBT community our support, as we see Tel Aviv (as) a home where any man or woman can live according to their beliefs.”

FAB Returns Nov. 14!

August 3, 2009

Former gay marine Eric Alva, first soldier wounded in Iraq War

Former gay marine Eric Alva, first soldier wounded in Iraq War

The popular event FAB returns Nov. 14 in the newly opened Lancaster County Convention Center & Marriott Penn Square.

Formally named the Fall Achievement Benefit, the returning event is co-chaired this year by Patti Bucek and Don Blyler III. The evening is a celebration of the region’s lgbt community and is a key source of funding for the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender (LGBT) Community Center Coalition of Central PA.

Headline speaker is former gay Marine Eric Alva, the first soldier wounded in the Iraq War and active right now in the congressional DADT debate. Alva will speak mainly about the strong roles played by lgbt people in society. “Alva’s remarks are meant to empower those in the audience and let everyone know that they can make a very positive difference,” says coalition president Ted Martin.

“The Center Coalition is a volunteer-led effort to create a regionally representative community center that is both a location and a unifying point for central Pennsylvania’s large, diverse and multi-county lgbt population,” says Martin. The coalition’s mission is to create common ground for the lgbt community and allies in central Pennsylvania by providing services through spiritual, education and cultural activities that foster wholeness.

With the recent “merging” of two organizations – The LGBT Community Center Coalition of Central PA and youth group Common Roads – the FAB committee has also “merged” the youth organization’s summer “Tropicanza” fund-raising venue with FAB.

All Ticket Levels
This year’s event offers various levels of ticket prices in order to allow for the broadest cross-section of the community to participate and thereby support the community center. A FAB VIP Reception will be hosted from 5:30 – 6:30 p.m., a Classic Reception from 6-7 p.m. The Main Event begins at 7 p.m. evolving at 10 p.m into After-FAB, with music by east coast sensation DJ Freez. VIP tickets are $150, Classic Tickets are $75, and Dance Only Tickets are $20. All tickets include complimentary drink stubs.

“One of the most important elements we wanted to bring to the table was a truly diverse evening.” Says co-chair Patti Bucek. “The entertainment, speakers, silent auction, dance, and especially the three-tiered ticket pricing allows something for everyone”. A ticket purchased at any level offers individuals the chance to support the community center.”

VIP Reception
The evening starts at 5:30-6:30 p.m.=2 0with a “See & Be Seen” VIP Reception featuring Lancaster native and international jazz vocalist CoCo & Company. Enjoy delectable hors d’oeuvres and an exclusive “sneak peek” at the silent auction.

Classic Reception
The Classic Reception, 6-7 p.m., is available to all VIP & Classic Ticket holders and features tasty hors d’oeuvres, cash bar, and a silent auction with something for everyone. Nationally acclaimed flutists Matthew Allison and Adrian Baule will provide the “classic” entertainment in keeping with evening’s high caliber. The Common Roads’ Art Exhibit “Coming Out, 15 Artists/15 Years of Common Roads,” will also be on display and available for purchase through the silent auction.

Photographer on Site
To keep the memories of the night forever treasured, Tony Gibble Photography will be on-hand to perfectly capture the nights’ special moments. Photographs will be available at a special price, with a portion of the proceeds going to the LGBT Community Center Coalition.

Main Event
The Main Event/Dinner is 7-10 p.m. and opens with the Marriott’s unbelievable catering menu. At press time, the Mistress of Ceremonies was still being confirmed but promises to be another highlight of the evening. The MC will lead the evenings’ program of accolades and award presentations. Even though the event is back after a short hiatus, “This isn’t your everyday stuffy old traditional event,” says co-chair Blyler. “If the crowd leaves the event with increased pride in the concept of an LGBT Community Center here as well as a sense of amazement from the event atmosphere, that’s terrific!! But at the end of the day, this event is about establishing a stronger, more unified community – through a dedicated and supportive community CENTER. When that happens, the committee has done their job right”. The special presentation planned is a lively concept to keep the audience engaged and excited.

Eric Alva
After the special presentation Eric Alva, gay and the first American soldier wounded in Iraq, will address the crowd. In keeping with tradition, FAB Co-Chairs will present the Fall Achievement Award at the close of the main event.

The night isn’t over yet. To close out the evening, renowned east coast sensation DJ Freez will spin his dance mixes.
For more information on an evening that promises to sell out, or to purchase your tickets now, visit: or call20717.920.9534.