National Gay Media Association presents inaugural Ad POP Awards

AbsolutThe National Gay Media Association — a consortium of LGBT publications across the U.S., including Dallas Voice — has announced the recipients of its first-ever Ad POP Awards, recognizing excellence in advertising efforts directed at gay consumers. They are awarded for both print and online campaigns in regional LGBT media. (POP stands for Pride in Online and Print.)

“The awards were created to illustrate the effective campaigns of companies that market to the LGBT community through local media,” according to Leo Cusimano, publisher of Dallas Voice. “The ads were chosen for their design and message. In addition, these ads show the fabric and diversity of our LBGT community.”

National winners were recognized in a variety of segments. The Automotive award went to Mercedes-Benz; The Pharmaceutical award (branded) went to Gilead for its Salix and Fulyzaq products; it also won the unbranded award for its “Answers” ad.

Pernod Ricard USA was recognized with the Spirits award for its Absolut campaign.

Several segments had multiple winners. The Non-Profit award went to: Harlem United; the D.C. Office of Human Rights; and the Centers for Disease Control. Financial winners were: Wells Fargo; PNC Bank; and Regions Bank. Travel winners are: Alaska Airlines; Hyatt; Loews Hotel; Key West Tourism; and Palm Springs Tourist.

Regional awards were also presented. Dallas Voice bestowed the top local award on the Dallas Conventions and Visitors Bureau for a campaign designed by Tracy Locke.

Other local winners include Cantoni; Love Field Jeep; Provincetown Tourism Office; and Capital One.

 

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Business Insider highlights Dallas efforts to become ‘hot new gay destination’

BIGBusiness Insider published an article this week calling Dallas “one of the most gay-friendly cities in the U.S.” and promoting LGBT travel to the city. The Dallas Visitors and Convention Bureau seems to be behind the campaign to promote Dallas as LGBT-friendly.

Dallas Voice and our upcoming Wedding Party & Expo are both mentioned in the article. The Expo is presented as evidence Dallas is open for business, especially as a wedding destination.

There’s a link to the LGBT Visitor’s Guide on the CVB website. The page links to several resources, with some glaring omissions. For example, under hotels, you can choose properties by location. There’s a Market Center/Love Field selection and Downtown/Uptown, but not one for Oak Lawn, even though on the CVB page, they promote “Oak Lawn” as the LGBT neighborhood. There should be a list for Oak Lawn hotels.

The page also lists nine LGBT events, two of which are no longer in existence, one which is on hiatus and one we’ve never heard of.

We love the enthusiasm of the head of the CVB who thinks people from states all over the country that have had marriage equality — some for years — are suddenly going to think it’s a great idea to come and get married in a state whose attorney general still hasn’t clearly instructed county clerks to follow the law.

—  David Taffet

Gay travel journos tour Dallas, eat too much and have too much fun

IMG_1588For a number of years, gay journalists from around the world (and the U.S.) have descended on North Texas to get a taste for what it’s like to live in, and visit, Dallas as a gay person. Ya know, if you don’t live here, you can imagine outsiders might think “Red State haters” and “George W. Bush’s hometown” more than “largest DIFFA fundraiser, Black Tie Dinner and gay church in the world,” so we need to welcome them and put on our best Stetson and tallest stilettos to show them what it’s like. (We expect they will write copious positive reviews of their experience to share with their audiences.) And based on my poll, mission accomplished.

Seven journos braved the trip that exposed them to life here. Paul (from Holland, second from left), returns to Dallas after having been here last five years ago. Fellow Amsterdam resident Edwin (center) remarked that he could move here permanently, given the chance.

It’s interesting how others see our city, as well. All were impressed by the “ample” parking (are they crazy?) and some were agog that the line dancers at the Round-Up Saloon could actually “click” their boots when they stomped around the dance floor. They also seemed to enjoy the ample food, which is always a huge part of press tours. They got to dine at Stephan Pyles’ Stampede 66, Henry’s Majestic, Dish and Meso Maya; and took cocktail classes at Cook Hall and with Leann Berry at Komali. That was just the start: They got massages at Green Lotus Spa; they took excursions to NorthPark Center, the Arts District, Oak Cliff and Klyde Warren Park; ventured to the museums and even took in Gaybingo on Saturday night, in addition to exploring the gayborhood and its nightlife.

It only took three days to do all this, and lots more; Steven Lindsey — himself a travel journalist (and frequent Dallas Voice contributor) — organizing a full but not overwhelming experience for them. So keep an eye out for stories appearing in Curve, The Out Traveler, Man About World and other gay pubs around the world in the coming months.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

We’re the Best! Vote for Oak Lawn as Best Gayborhood

Best gayborhoods

So, here’s your chance to show your Texas Pride. OutTraveler.com, the online travel site that caters to the LGBT community, is in the midst of its annual Out Traveler Awards. The category up for votes right now is “Best Gayborhood,” and Dallas’ Oak Lawn is one of 10 contenders for the title.

OutTraveler.com calls the “Best Gayborhood” content “the most contentious” and “the most controversial” category in the Out Traveler Awards:

“We have ownership in the neighborhoods we consider our own; those places we can let our hair down and be ourselves. But what really makes the best LGBT neighborhood? Is it restaurants, bars, walkability, clean streets, public transit, or safety? Think long and hard before you vote, because the top queer area may not be the one down the street, but the enclave we discovered while on vacation or during a work trip.”

The site explains that Out Traveler editors chose the 10 nominees on the list, but “we’re amenable to write in candidates in the comments section.” Other nominees are Boystown in Chicago, Boystown in West Hollywood/Los Angeles, Hell’s Kitchen in Manhattan/NYC, Dupont Circle in Washington, D.C., the Castro in San Francisco, Wilton Manors in Ft. Lauderdale, Washington Square West in Philadelphia, Midtown in Atlanta and Capitol Hill in Seattle.

Dallas Tavern Guild, the association of LGBT nightclubs that puts on Dallas’ LGBT Pride events each year, is rooting for Oak Lawn to win the award, and Executive Director Michael Doughman urged everyone to go to the site to vote.

“We have some good competition but I know if we make an effort we can win this award,” Doughman said. We may not have won much in the midterm elections, but we have a chance for national recognition for our community. Let’s do this!”

The Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau is also urging everyone to vote for Oak Lawn.

But do it quickly. The polls close two weeks from yesterday (Tuesday, Nov. 11), and winners will be announced the first week in December.

—  Tammye Nash

Rainbow-themed entry among finalists for best photo taken in B-G letters

BIG

Nickalaus Swan in front of ilume.

Visit Dallas is running a contest for best photo taken with its B-G letters. And while we’d never try to influence the outcome of an election, we think it’s noteworthy that the week-eight winner — which is now one of the finalists — was taken between the rainbow-colored letters at ilume.

Although our cover shot of the glamorous Jenna Skyy in a flowing red Balanciaga gown didn’t make it into the finals, the above photo with Nickalaus Swan holding a rainbow fan did. This was after publicist Scott Barretto and ilume developer Luke Crosland had the letters repainted in rainbow colors and placed in front of the Cedar Springs complex. They will remain there until September.

The tally in Visit Dallas’ contest finals, at the time of this writing, had Swan tied for fourth place. But he was only 20 votes behind the leader.

To vote, go to Visit Dallas on Facebook and “like” the page. Then click on the People’s Choice tab. Swan’s picture, marked “Week Eight Winner” is at the very top. Click “vote” and share.

—  David Taffet

Rainbow-colored version of ‘B-G’ letters coming to Oak Lawn

BIG_Oaklawn

A mock-up of the rainbow-colored ‘B-G’ sculpture.

Dallas’ “B-G” letters are coming to Oak Lawn repainted in rainbow colors, according to Scott Barretto.

Barretto’s Social House Media agency and ilume developer Luke Crossland are paying for the colorful paint job and the sculpture will be placed outside Crossland’s building at Knight Street and Cedar Springs Road in front of the old Monica’s.

Barretto said painting should take about six days but the letters in rainbow colors should be ready in time for some June Pride Month photography.

The letters are part of a marketing campaign conducted by the Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau to promote tourism to the city. The idea is for people to be photographed standing between the “B” and “G” to make the “I.” The letters have been placed in various places around the city, but not in Oak Lawn.

—  David Taffet

Dallas among best cities for travelers

IMG_5288

When the gay travel writers’ group left Dallas last week, chances are some of them had a pretty satisfying experience. That would be borne out by a recent survey by CardHub.com about the best (and worst) cities for summer travel.

Based on analysis of information from Kayak.com about 30 major U.S. cities, the survey came up with a list of departure cities that were “best” in terms of average time and money spent, and ranked Dallas No. 2, behind winner Denver for domestic travel; for international travel, Washington, D.C., was tops. When you combine domestic and international information, Dallas came in fourth overall, behind Chicago, Washington and New York.

Among the worst wasn’t far away, though. San Antonio was exceeded only by Riverside, Calif., in terms of bad domestic departures.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Journalists arrive for 10th annual Dallas International LGBT Travel Writers tour

GLBT Press tour

The 10th annual GLBT press tour comes to North Texas May 8-12, and the seven writers participating begin arriving today. This year’s group includes three writers from the U.S. and one each from Canada, France, Germany and the U.K.

This year’s tour includes Fort Worth and a night at the Wildcatter Ranch in Graham. Dallas sites on the tour include the Arts District, the Perot Museum and an art tour. The cuisine includes Hunky’s, Original Market Diner and a fine steak house.

Wednesday night is a welcome at the Rose Room at 6 p.m., and Sunday includes optional worship at Cathedral of Hope.

Check out this Friday’s Voice for more information about the press tour and the marketing of North Texas as an LGBT travel destination.

—  David Taffet

Dallas CVB launches Razzle Dazzle sweepstakes

The Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau gets in on the action with their Razzle Dazzle Sweepstakes celebrating National Gay Pride Month here in Big D. As Razzle Dazzle Dallas makes its return after eight years, one person can win a package to make it, like, super special. VIP access and three nights at the Melrose is the best anyone could ask for.

Here’s the official word:

The Razzle Dazzle Sweepstakes provides one lucky winner and their guest with accommodations for three nights (June 2-4) at the historic Warwick Melrose Hotel, VIP access to all Razzle Dazzle Dallas events, exclusive gift bags and more.

“June is an exciting month to visit Dallas,” said Phillip Jones, president and CEO of the Dallas CVB. “We welcome the return of Razzle Dazzle Dallas, as both visitors and residents have an opportunity to participate in five days of events and entertainment created by the city’s vibrant LGBT population—the nation’s sixth largest. While they’re here, our VIP guests will also see Dallas’ world class arts, shopping, dining and entertainment.”

Entries for the Razzle Dazzle Sweepstakes will be accepted online through noon on May 13, 2011, and a winner will be announced shortly thereafter. The sweepstakes is open to legal residents of the U.S. at least 21 years of age or older at the time of entry. For official rules and to enter, head here.


—  Rich Lopez

Dallas CVB raffling off Super Bowl tickets

Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas

Despite the common stereotype that gay men don’t like football, I am willing to bet there are some out there who would be thrilled to get to go to Super Bowl XLV, not to mention the lesbians who are football fans.

And with the NFL’s championship game coming to Cowboy Stadium in Arlington next February, the Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau is giving even those of us who couldn’t normally afford a Super Bowl ticket a chance to see the big game firsthand by raffling off two Super Bowl XLV tickets,valued at $2,500.

The raffle tickets are $50 each and will be available through midnight on Oct. 31. The random drawing will be held Nov. 1, and the winner will get two tickets to the championship game on Feb. 6, with “premium seats,” according to CVB President and CEO Phillip Jones.

You have to be 18 years or older and reside in the 48 contiguous states or the District of Columbia to be participate in the raffle. But if you meet those requirements, you can buy as many of the $50 raffle tickets as you want to. Credit cards are accepted, and the raffle prize doesn’t include airfare, lodging or other potential expenses of attending the game.

A portion of the proceeds from the raffle will go to the Metro Dallas Homeless Alliance, which operates The Bridge homeless shelter.

For more information or to purchase a raffle ticket, go here.

—  admin