18 HOUSTON VOICE/ JUNE 21, 1996
(Continuedfrom page I)
concerns that must be adhered to in order for
the city of Houston to grant the parade
permit. They include such matters as,
individual bicycles, rollerskaters &
skateboarders are not allowed, they are
permitted in the parade only as part of a unit.
A positive image of our community is what
the committee would like presented. There is
a dress code which encourages that everyone
be properly covered, and while men can wear
a minimum of "Adidas style shorts", women
must wear both shorts and a tank top. There
is not any yelling of "Throw me something,
mister" like at Mardi Gras, as delegations are
not allowed to throw anything. Spectators
may be "handed" items however. Every
delegation is required to bring along a
garbage bag to keep lifter down.
The issue of police harassment as claimed in
previous years is being dealt with by
representatives from Constable Jack
Abercia's office. The liaisons are Capt.
Martin and Capt. Joe Scott. Any problems
caused by the behavior of law enforcement
officers (or others) should be reported to
them or a pride committee member.
Ramirez stressed that Pride Week is a way for
us to harness the "grief and compassion that
will allow our community to survive." Ray
continued by stating, "It is time for our family
to be together and have a good time. We
deserve it!" He reminded everyone that
putting the event together is a year-long
project and suggests that if someone doesn't
like the way things are done, they have an
opportunity to join up. The Pride committee
for 1997 will have it's first meeting this July.
Jack Valinski, of the Board of Directors of
the Pride Committee of Houston, Inc. was the
next up. Jack was instrumental in
establishing the committee that oversees the
efforts of Pride Week Committees from year
to year. The delegations numbers were
announced and he explained, "We tried to
accommodate special requests where we
could, but pretty much assigned numbers as
the applications came in on a first come, first
serve basis." He also commented on the fact
that it is pretty remarkable that the committee
has become what it has. There is a lot of fun
involved but it still has to be run as a
business. The fact that there are two CPA's
on the board is helpful to that end. He said
the fact that we were meeting in a city facility
was also pretty remarkable, something that
would not have happened ten or so years ago.
One of those CPA's is Julie Siska who is the
current Executive Director of the Pride
Committee. She was busily handing out the
information packets to those who had
already been assigned their delegate slots.
Susan Guerrero was staffing the merchandise
table. Pride logo t-shirts, rainbow water
bottle caps, magnets and other assorted
goodies were available. These items will be
on display and for sale at the festival
following the parade. This is one way of
raising funds for the committee's work.
Scott Lewis addressed the fund-raising
project that he has been in charge of this
year. Last year, Leesa Douglas had suggested
an idea which became the very first "Pumped
Up on Art." The second annual event has
become what may prove to be one of the
biggest social events not only of pride week,
but of the year under Scott's direction. Shoes
HOUSTON • (713) 528-9192
Saturday, June 22
Come on Down & see your favorite
Bartender in their Boots & Boxers
•* ♦ -i «■ ♦ -J ■* H s S s
Sunday, June 23rd, 8pm
Jamie Roberts, Candidate for Miss TGRfl '97
presents fl Celebration of Gay Pride
«* ♦ -J ' * i. * s s S \
Come on Down & see the
New Look at the BRB
More New Looks to come!!
H * ■*. <* * H * S S * •»
Come On Down & Dance with DJ Jeff
Tuesday & friday Nights
Jack Valinski, Ray Ramirez and Robin
Duncan share a laugh at the final Pride
Week '96 meeting.
were solicited from a number of celebrities,
with one shoe being autographed and the
other given to an artist who then creates a
work reflective of that celebrity. The shoes
will be auctioned off on Friday, June 21.
Scott also encourages folks to get involved
and. expressed that no special skills are
needed, just the desire and interest in
learning. Many of the committee members
expressed that they would welcome turning
their role over to someone else.
Valinski announced that the 1997 parade
will be the first night-time event. Tentatively
being called "Rainbow Lights", it is being
styled after the famous Gay Mardi Gras held
in Sydney, Australia each year which claims
an estimated 650,000 attendance. So the
involvement of many more people will be
needed. The Pride Guide has a full list of the
various committees, projects (including job
descriptions) where volunteers are needed.
The 1996 committee has made an impressive
organizational effort for Houston's Lesbian
Gay Pride Week. Within a few hours of time
the meeting is over and everyone breaks off
either to go to home, or to join with one
committee or another over dinner for more
work. As everyone leaves, all are reminded
that the parade starts a little later this year in
an effort to beat the heat. "Step off is at 5pm,
but unlike most things in our community,"
Jack Valinski stresses that "The parade
always starts on time.!"
The Houston Voice salutes the 1996 Pride
Committee and all the volunteers who work
so hard to give our community this special
celebration. The committee meets the third
Tuesday of each month at 2700 Albany #304
- starting in July, call The Pride Line
^t3/529-69~9for the time.
opens in Atlanta
Opening on June 24, for the first time an
Olympic host city has a Gay and Lesbian
visitor's center. The center, located at
1374 W. Peachtree St. in Atlanta will provide visitors and residents with world
class entertainment and hospitality
throughout the summer '96 games.
The center will also provide performance space for the play, "In Stitches—an
alternative musical." Based on the book
by Lee Leonard, it is directed by David H.
Bell with music by Henry Marsh, lyrics by
Bell. It is intended as a "Celebration of
Life" in the age of AIDS. For more information about the visitor's center and
ticket information call 770-677-9883.