Let’s hear it for Gloria’s restaurants!

Earlier today, during a conversation with Dallas Voice Distribution Manager Linda Depriter, she told me that she had been told about a year-and-a-half ago to remove Dallas Voice newspaper racks from the Gloria’s restaurants on Lemmon Avenue and in the Bishop Arts neighborhood. She said the managers at those two locations told her they didn’t want our paper in their establishments.

Well, I was irritated by that, and posted a note on my personal Facebook page saying that if they didn’t want a gay newspaper in their restaurant, then I wouldn’t be eating there anymore. That post spread like wildfire, and almost immediately angry folks were calling for a boycott. BUT — and this is very important — within an hour, Gloria’s owner Jose Fuentes had contacted our publisher and co-owner, Leo Cusimano, to let him know that he (Fuentes) and his co-owners at Gloria’s most decidedly did want Dallas Voice racks in their restaurants, and that the restaurants’ owners owe a lot to the LGBT community — here in Dallas and in Houston and other cities in which Gloria’s restaurants are located.

“The gay community built Gloria’s,” Fuentes told Cusimano. And in a follow-up call with me, Fuentes said that the LGBT community “was always there when we needed them most.”

Dallas Voice newspapers will be available again in the restaurants here in Dallas by the time the Friday, May 26 issue hits the streets.

And the lesson here is just because one employee of a business might have a problem with LGBT people, doesn’t mean that every employee does, and it doesn’t mean that the people who own and operate that business have a problem with LGBT people. A little communication can go a long, long way.

So thanks, Jose Fuentes. We appreciate your support. And I’ll be heading over to Gloria’s for lunch very soon.

—  Tammye Nash

Mardi Gras Oak Cliff parade today

Bead dazzling

Don’t let yesterday’s rain get you down. The sun is out for today’s Mardi Gras Oak Cliff celebration with its fourth annual parade. But it starts off with a crawfish boil and street party in the Bishop Arts District. Live music, food and beer will get you revved up for the parade. From Davis and Montclair to the Bishop Arts District, the parade rolls on through featuring floats, live bands, bicycle rides and more. And kinda makes us jealous of Oak Cliff.

DEETS: N. Bishop Ave at Davis St., 2 p.m., parade at 4 p.m. MardiGrasOakCliff.com.

—  Rich Lopez

Inaugural Oak Cliff Film Festival announced

Aviation Cinemas, the company who purchased the Texas Theatre, just announced their plans for the first Oak Cliff Film Festival, a fest that  celebrates “brave and independent filmmaking of all stripes.” The OCFF is set to happen next summer throughout various venues in the OC. Texas Theatre director Jason Reimer will lead the acquisitions team along with Blake Ethridge, formerly with Fantastic Fest.

While the plan is to give emphasis to Texas filmmakers, the goal is to become a viable international festival. Makes sense and Oak Cliff is an easy sell. With such host venues like The Kessler, Texas Theatre, The Belmont and Bishop Arts Theater, the festival will play in all renovated spots in the area. Already, this isn’t your typical festival.

The projected dates for the OCFF is June 14–17, 2012. Want your film to be a part of it? Submissions open here Nov. 7.

—  Rich Lopez