PastOut: 3 Years ago in ‘OutSmart’

Charlotte Simmons as Houston’s first Pride Idol, and other Pride memories.

by Donalevan Maines

Grand marshals Jack Valinski and Maria Gonzalez led the 2007 GLBT Pride Parade down Westheimer, along with honorary grand marshal Garnet Coleman and honorary grand marshal-organization Imperial Court of Houston-Space City Empire, including Sean Carter, Marc Cohen, Orlin Cullever, Regina Dane, and Ginger Vitis.

In conjunction with the Houston Gay & Lesbian Parents’ parade entry, Grant Caplan and Steven Tesney of officially unfurled the Pride Family flag, incorporating traditional Gay Pride colors with the image of a home embedded in a heart.

A downpour anointed Charlotte Simmons as Houston’s first Pride Idol at the GLBT Pride Festival, where Katy’s American Idol finalist Kimberly Caldwell was guest emcee; gay twins Jason and Joshua, stars of Logo TV reality show Nemesis Rising, headlined; singer-songwriter Amy Cook entertained on the community stage; and students in Rice University’s “Introduction to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Studies” class displayed their research in the History Tent.

Niko Niko’s celebrated its 30th anniversary by rolling back the price of its famous Gyro sandwich to $1.75. marked 10 years as a community supporter.

The Gay Men’s Chorus of Houston sang songs of Judy Garland in Bayou City Performing Arts’ presentation of There’s No Place Like Home at Jones Hall.

Frank Wood of Infovine Inc. was named to the board of directors of Equality Texas, the lobbying organization that promotes LGBT equality.

About 60 gay dads active in Fathers First Houston met on Mondays at Bering Memorial United Methodist Church, and members Jack Berger, Jeff Colwell, Jim Evans, William Flowers, Remy Lopez, Troy Merihew, Javier Olivero, Steven Ponder, and Rob Scamardo posed for OutSmart to promote the group.

“Weekend with Sheryl Swoopes,” boasting choice seats to a Houston Comets game followed the next day by brunch with the hoops star, benefited the Houston chapter of the Human Rights Campaign.

And Gregg Shapiro wrote that singer Cyndi Lauper “firmly cement[ed] her status as reigning goddess” as she brought the True Colors Tour to Cynthia Woods Pavilion in The Woodlands, featuring five hours of music and full concert performances by Lauper, Erasure, Debbie Harry, The Dresden Dolls, and The Misshapes. Margaret Cho hosted the event, and Rosie O’Donnell was the special guest. “Every dollar from every ticket that is sold will go to the Human Rights Campaign,” said Lauper.

Donalevan Maines also writes about the Tonys in this issue of OutSmart magazine.

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Don Maines

Donalevan Maines is a regular contributor to OutSmart Magazine.

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