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

Get your collectible Dallas Voice Pride Edition — 3 covers to choose from!

Cover1Cover2Cover3

Here at Dallas Voice, we’ve done something for Pride Weekend we’ve never done before: We are offering readers three versions of the Voice to read in one week.

Now, the content inside is the same. There’s coverage of the upcoming Gay Softball World Series, a calendar of Pride events to take you through the fall, some thought-provoking opinion pieces, telling interviews with musicians Andy Butler and Jennifer Hudson as well as a piece on how Stoli is making a push into the gay market again following its Olympics disaster.

But on the outside? Three different full-color glossy covers reflecting three sides of Pride. Check them all out! Thanks for your support, and Happy Pride!

 

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Cocktail Friday: Vodka drinks for Pride!

Stolichnaya vodka has swung back from a public relations disaster to spirited sponsor of Dallas Pride events from Razzle Dazzle to Black Tie to this weekend’s parade. (We have a story about it in this week’d edition.) They have a few recipes they’ve shared with us. Cheers!

RazLemonade

Stoli Raz Lemonade

One of a handful of flavored vodkas in the Stoli stable, the Razberi adds a fruity flavor with a kick.

1 part Stoli Razberi

2 parts favorite lemonade

Fresh raspberries and mint to garnish

Making it: Muddle fresh raspberries and mint (or simply add to a skewer). Pour in vodka and lemonade. Shake well. Pour into a tall tumbler over ice.

Stoli O Rouge

A citrusy take on a Cape Cod.

1 part Stoli Oranj

1 part cranberry juice

Club soda

Orange slice.

Making it: Shake equal portions of vodka and cranberry. Pour into a highball glass. Splash with club soda. Garnish with an orange wheel.

Mule

Moscow Mule

The popular Moscow Mule gets a real kick from Moscow with this creation, which includes an all-new Stoli-brand ginger beer.

1 part Stoli Elit

2 parts Stoli ginger beer

Lime

Making it: Squeeze lime into a copper cup with ice. Pour over vodka and top with ginger beer. Still. Garnish with lime wedges.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Get dirt cheap tickets to Six Flags for Saturday’s Gay Day

Six Flags

Dallas Voice is once again sponsoring its annual Gay Day at Six Flags, just in time for Dallas Pride. If you buy the tickets online here, you get access to the park and parking for just $35. Heck, that’s about what it costs just to park on a normal day! Anyway, it’s always a hoot, and a great way to get out and get proud before the festivities on Sunday.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

2014 Pride parade grand marshals named

grand marshals

The 2014 Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade grand marshals are Rafael McDonnell, left, and the Rev. Carol West

With nearly 1,600 votes cast by the community, the Rev. Carol West and Rafael McDaniel have been chosen as grand marshals of the 2014 Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade.

West is the pastor of Celebration Community Church in Fort Worth. She was called in 1998 by the then 35-member congregation to lead the church which now has grown to more than 500 members. In 2010, West was named winner of the Black Tie Dinner’s Kuchling Humanitarian Award.

McDonnell is communications and advocacy manager for Resource Center. He worked 16 years in broadcast news, including seven years as an assignment editor for Fox 4 News in Dallas. In May 2008, became the first person to hold the job of communications manager for the center.

Watch for more about this year’s grand marshals in the Friday, Aug. 1 issue of Dallas Voice.

—  Tammye Nash

My post-Pride lunch with Mike Rawlings

1186736_10201881308536307_1584127030_nI was at a luncheon today, celebrating the 95th anniversary of the original El Fenix restaurant, a staple of Tex-Mex here in Dallas. Also at the luncheon was Mayor Mike Rawlings, who sat at my table during lunch. One of my colleagues noted that the mayor appeared to have lost weight. A while later, the mayor and I got to chatting.

“How was the gay Pride parade yesterday?” he asked me with a smile. “I was out of town so I missed it.”

It was a lot of fun, I told him.

“When I came back, I saw there was some kind of controversy?”

“Yes, about a dress code; people didn’t react well to it.”

“Well, how were people dressed?” he asked. “Did anyone show up naked?”

“Not naked,” I said. “Though some were … well ….” I reached into my pocket, pulled out my iPhone and showed him one of the photos I took (pictured here). “That’s about as racy as it got.”

“Well, that’s nothing unusual,” Mayor Rawlings said. “And that’s just what I look like with my clothes off.”

He was joking. I think. But he has lost weight. Despite his failure to stand up for marriage equality, it’s always nice when a politician looks at pictures of men in Speedos and doesn’t recoil in horror.

Oh, and El Fenix — 95 frickin’ years. Pretty awesome.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Get your tickets to Gay Day at Six Flags online in advance, save a bundle

hi_ShockWave

If you’ve ever been to Six Flags, you know it’s not exactly cheap: Parking alone is, like, $15, and your car doesn’t even get to ride the Titan. But if you wanna save tons of money, you can attend Gay Day at Six Flags this Saturday. Purchase your tickets online in advance (by going here), and your cost including parking is just $35. That leaves you the 50 bucks you would have spent on admission to buy funnel cakes and rent the fast-pass fob and impress your boyfriend in the arcade games. And best of all, you don’t need to be gay to get the discount … we promise we won’t ask, and won’t tell.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Voice of Pride under way; Tavern Guild accepting grand marshal nominations

VOP13

Dallas may not celebrate Pride in June — which some would apparently prefer — but we do have Voice of Pride, which is well under way and continues tonight at the Dallas Eagle. In addition, the Dallas Tavern Guild is now accepting nominations for grand marshals for September’s Pride parade. Submit your nomination by by going here.

—  John Wright

Pride Recap: Rain hurts turnout; police make 2 arrests; Melrose may close lawn

Police respond to a disturbance in front of the Warwick Melrose Hotel during Sunday’s 29th annual Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade. (John Wright/Dallas Voice)

The steady rain may not have dampened spirits during Dallas’ gay Pride parade on Sunday — but it did significantly reduce attendance at the event, according to police estimates.

DISD Detective Sgt. Jeremy Liebbe, who served as co-security liaison for the Dallas Pride parade and festival, said an estimated 25,000 people attended the Pride parade, down from an average of 35,000.

Liebbe said paid admission for the ensuing Pride Festival in Lee Park was 5,800 —roughly the same as last year but well below the 8,000 organizers had hoped for in 2012.

Michael Doughman, executive director of the Dallas Tavern Guild, which puts on the parade and festival, said despite the rain, he doesn’t believe revelers left disappointed.

“I think the rain was a frustration for people, but everybody seemed to be in a good mood,” he said. “I don’t think it really dampened the spirit of anybody who was there. … All in all, when you allow for the scenario when it’s going to rain, I still consider it a success.”

—  John Wright

Pride Run sign found stepped on after disappearing from Katy Trail again

A sign promoting the DFW Front Runners’ first-ever Pride Run this Sunday went missing for a second time over the weekend.

Front Runners President Lin Wang told Instant Tea last week that two 18-by-24-inch metal signs were placed along the Katy Trail to advertise the event. One was near the Katy Ice House and the other was near Hall Street. The one near Hall Street went missing early last week.

Wang suspected that the theft was motivated by anti-gay bias, and after he noticed the replacement sign was missing this morning after putting it up on Friday, he’s even more convinced that someone is against the LGBT Pride event.

“There’s no other reason someone would steal it,” he said.

Wang emailed Instant Tea on Monday afternoon saying the sign had been found but was stepped on, leaving behind a “funny footprint” on the back, and tossed along the trail. The sign has been put up again near the entrance.

Wang hadn’t reported the first theft to the Dallas police because he’s been too busy working on last-minute preparations for the run, but he said he did plan report the incidents. If the sign had not been found, he said the group wouldn’t have replaced it because it would likely have been stolen again.

More information on the event can be found here. The cost for registration is $25. The Front Runner Dallas walking and running group meets Saturday mornings at 8:30 at the statue of Robert E. Lee in Lee Park. Volunteers for the event can sign up on the website.

—  Dallasvoice