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Fri, 22 Jan 2021 20:23:49 +0000


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Visit Key West Like a Queen: Drag Icons Give Their Tourist Tips

Fri, 22 Jan 2021 20:20:33 +0000

Drag is nothing new to Key West. Visitors to the popular LGBTQ vacation destination have long relished the opportunity to see world-class diva impersonations, slick modern musical numbers and raucous late-night stage shows along the island’s bustling Duval Street.

Then, an Epiphany happened.

International drag sensation Epiphany came to the island in 2019, and she’s already leaving a mark on the vibrant local drag scene.

With 20 years of experience under her belt, this classic bombshell blends the old Hollywood glamour of Marilyn Monroe with the rock and roll attitude of Debbie Harry. It’s a winning combination that’s earned her acclaim (and opportunities) all over the globe.

Having performed in San Diego, New York, Berlin, Sri Lanka and more, Epiphany was looking for a place to call home between summers working in Mykonos. She connected with local drag legend Sushi, who offered her a place to stay and a gig with the 801 Girls at 801 Bourbon Bar.


“The intention was to just be down here for the winter, but as Key West does, it’s magnetic, and if you belong here, it just won’t let you go,” she said.

Since then, Epiphany has brought her signature style to the stage, including live singing. Sushi and 801 even purchased new equipment to properly showcase Epiphany’s voice. But the warm welcome extends beyond just her boss and co-workers.

“There’s a lot of queens who have been here a long time and the community of drag queens is very tight,” Epiphany said. “You have like Randy Roberts and Chris Peterson, who are like absolute stars, who I knew about before I even came down here and who have been really kind. Everyone’s been really sweet to me. All the Aqua girls are very kind to me, all the girls at 801 have been very welcoming.”

Last year may have forced her to extend her stay, but now that she’s had a taste of island life, she plans to make it an ongoing home.

“I will still travel internationally, but I may make Key West the base now,” she said. “I really adore the weather and not having to wear closed-toe shoes.”

We asked Epiphany and some of her best gal pals in the Key West drag scene to share their insights on the best the island has to offer. After all, who better to ask how to make your next trip to Key West fit for a queen?

Name: Epiphany

How long have you been doing drag?

I’ve been doing drag for 20 years.

Describe your drag in 3 words: tall, beautiful singer

What is your favorite Key West thing to do?:

I love going to Smathers Beach during the day. I think Smathers is such a beautiful beach, and it’s great to snorkel at. I also really like the aquarium here. I like the Eco-Discovery Center down at Fort Zach. Fort Zach’s really fun. You could do a whole day at Fort Zach and not get bored.

What’s your favorite late-night spot?

I kind of prefer to go to Island House late at night. Island House is quiet that late. I can go sit in a steam room alone and not have anybody touch me, because everybody is asleep. Their bar and restaurant is open 24 hours a day, so I can go get a drink if i want. I can go get a kale Caesar salad at 3 in the morning.

What’s your Key West secret?

I really like a place called No Name Pub, which is up on lower Big Pine. It’s very local, it’s been there forever. It’s just this tiny, little bar … It’s really cute, and I love their smoked fish dip!

Where can people see you performing?

Drag shows at 801, seven days a week at 9 p.m. and 11 p.m.

Name: Charlize Angel

How long have you been doing drag?

It’s been almost 15 years now

Describe your drag in 3 words: eclectic, fun & glamorous!

What is your favorite Key West thing to do?:

Charter a boat with a bunch of friends and go out on the water for the day snorkeling, exploring the mangroves, or just having cocktails on the sand bar.

What’s your Key West secret?

Well, if I shared that, it wouldn’t be a secret anymore, now would it? But one place I do recommend going is Leather Master of Key West. It’s a small little “toy shop for the adventurous.” It’s located in Old Town, just off Duval Street.

What’s one thing everyone who visits Key West should do?

Go to any of Key West’s amazing theaters to check out a fantastic Broadway-caliber production, such as the Waterfont Playhouse, the Red Barn Theatre or the Tennessee Williams Theatre.

Where can people see you performing?

Emceeing the monthly “Drunken Drag Brunch” show at Mangoes Restaurant. They’re usually held on the third or fourth Sunday of the month.

Name: Michelle Stevens

How long have you been doing drag?

Been doing drag since around 1989.

Describe your drag in 3 words: incredible, old-school drag

What’s your favorite non-drag bar?

My favorite place to go and have drinks that’s not a drag bar is Pepe’s.

What’s one thing everyone who visits Key West should do?

Try the oysters at Pepe’s, incredible.

What’s your Key West secret?

There are no secrets in Key West. If you don’t believe me, come to Fantasy Fest.

Where can people see you performing?

I can be found working five nights a week at the world famous 801 Bourbon Bar on Duval.

Name: Beatrix Dixie

How long have you been doing drag?

I started dabbling in drag about nine years ago, but have been professionally paid to perform for about eight years.

Describe your drag in 3 words: energetic, playful, & magnetic

Where’s your favorite place to eat?

One of my favorite places to eat is Moondog Cafe. I go there for brunch often, and their sangrias are delicious!

What’s your favorite non-drag bar?

In my opinion, 22&Co. They have a beautiful spot off Duval that just makes you happy once you enter, amazing staff, and incredible drink options (some including edible glitter!).

What’s one thing everyone who visits Key West should do?

Not to be cliché, but I always suggest the sunsets! Be it on a cruise or at Mallory Square, we have some breathtaking sunsets!

Where can people see you performing?

You can see me performing at Aqua. We have shows seven days a weeks and times for shows vary, so for more info just go to our website and it will have all the details on showtimes and what queens are performing which nights! Also, we have a new restaurant, Poké In the Rear, located in back of Aqua, so now you can have dinner and a show as well!

Name: Christopher Peterson

How long have you been doing drag?

40 years

Describe your drag in 3 words: Celebrity female impersonation

What’s one thing everyone who visits Key West should do?

The Conch Train Ride. Not the trolley, but the train. It’s the tackiest thing on the planet. You go on that thing, but the best part of that, when you finish, you get to go to the Butterfly Conservatory.

What’s your favorite non-drag bar?

Bobby’s Monkey Bar, because it’s late-night, and it’s fabulous. It’s exactly where you want to be at 1 a.m. on a Saturday.

What’s your Key West secret?

If you want to do kayaking, try Lazy Dog out by Hurricane Hole … I live around the corner, so I will wave.

Where can people see you performing?

LaTeDa, of course, as well as appearing in productions at the Waterfront Playhouse.


Palm Springs Gay Clothing-Optional Resort INNdulge is Up for Sale

Wed, 23 Dec 2020 14:44:07 +0000


INNdulge, Palm Springs’ long-running clothing optional gay resort in the Warm Sands neighborhood, can be yours for a cool $10.8 million.

The Bay Area Reporter reports that owners Jon Jackson and his partner, Sandy Miller, have “stipulated that whoever buys it keeps the property as a gay resort.”

The owners said they had not planned to sell but were informed by a broker that commercial investors were turning to lodging as a safe haven from office and retail space: “(The broker) said that if we were thinking of selling INNdulge in the next five years, we should do it now.”

The BAR adds: “Palm Springs Bureau of Tourism public relations manager Randy Garner told the B.A.R. that all the city’s gay bars have survived the pandemic and he has not heard of any of the city’s gay resorts that have had to permanently close.”


Sun, Sand and Wide Open Spaces Await Travelers in Key West

Wed, 16 Dec 2020 18:34:31 +0000

(Rob O’Neal/Florida Keys News Bureau)

After months of staring at the same walls, it’s only natural to dream of wide open spaces. Whether stuck in a studio or tired of walking the same well-worn trails, we could all benefit from sticking our toes in the sand and looking out onto the horizon. There’s no better place to feel the sun on your face and wind in your hair than Key West.

The island may be the perfect destination right now. Key West’s idyllic weather and indefatigable community make it an ideal destination for anyone looking for utterly unique outdoor experiences. Long loved by LGBTQ travelers for its vibrant queer community, Key West continues to offer visitors opportunity to explore its history, experience its culture and enjoy the natural splendor.


We’ve rounded up a few of our favorite places to get out, get space and get lost in the island’s charms.

(Photo by Andy Newman/Florida Keys News Bureau)

Dry Tortugas National Park

Usually, a trek to Dry Tortugas National Park (100 square-miles of park across seven small islands) means taking at least half a day out of your Key West itinerary to travel about 70 miles west. Now’s the time to take advantage of the park’s exquisite clear waters and marine life. Getting there is a snap on a seaplane traveling a mere 500 feet above the water, which means masked passengers still have access to fresh air window vents, even in flight.

Less than one percent of the park is dry land, so once you arrive, you’ll want to get right in the water. Thanks to its remote location and currents running on the south of the park, Dry Tortugas boasts some of the most breathtaking corals and seagrass communities in the Keys. Swimming, snorkeling and diving are all excellent ways to glimpse massive corals, exotic lionfish and even shipwrecks. The park is also home to Fort Jefferson, a massive structure dating back to 1846 and known as the largest brick building in the Western hemisphere.

The view from Fort Zachary Taylor

Fort Zachary Taylor State Park

There are plenty of beautiful beaches and historic sites to behold without leaving Key West. Locals love Fort Zachary Taylor State Park for its serene beaches, winding trails and the picturesque views from atop the parks namesake Civil War fort. The fort is a breeze for a self-guided tour; helpful signage offers historical context and information throughout the structure.

Grab a sturdy pair of watershoes (the natural beach can be a bit rocky) for a relaxing walk along the water, or hop in with a snorkel to see marine life, including yellowtail snapper, parrot fish and corals.

Key West AIDS Memorial

Nestled beside Higgs Beach, the Edward B. Knight Pier is home to the gorgeous Key West AIDS Memorial. Dedicated in 1997, the Zimbabwe granite memorial was the first of its kind and includes more than 1,000 names of those lost to the AIDS epidemic and poems from Alfred Tennyson, Kahlil Gribran and Rachel Hadas. The bike- and pet-friendly pier is also a prime spot to catch the sunset after paying your respects.

Sunset at Mallory Square

The island’s most famous sunset spot is Mallory Square. Even today, street performers continue to entertain visitors (from a safe distance, of course) while local artisans and vendors showcase their wares. It’s a magical place to watch the sun disappear over the horizon, and now there’s more space to spread out without the crush of the crowds. Take a stroll around the nearby shops, treating yourself while supporting the local businesses.

Key West Cemetery

Located in the heart of Old Town, just a short walk from guesthouses like Island House, Alexander’s Guesthouse and Equator, the Key West Cemetery is a unique spot for an afternoon stroll. Walk among the chickens and iguanas that appear around the above-ground tombs, and look out for some of the most famous headstones. You can print out a map and self-guided tour online to find all the most famous headstones, like B.P. Pearl Robert’s with the epitaph “I told you I was sick.”

FURY Adventures

Thrillseekers can hit the water with FURY, thanks to comprehensive new safety procedures, including social distancing, sanitation and limited party sizes. Cruise around on a jet ski, fly through the sky parasailing or join a “reef and ‘ritas” snorkel expedition, including margaritas.

For the latest on health & safety protocols in The Florida Keys, please visit


Passengers Applaud as ‘Karen’ is Escorted Off Frontier Airlines Flight for Refusing to Wear Mask, Cursing at Flight Attendant: WATCH

Sat, 05 Dec 2020 13:36:34 +0000

Frontier Karen

A woman on a Frontier Airlines flight from Cincinnati to Tampa was removed on Thursday after refusing to wear a mask and cursing at a flight attendant.

“Ma’am, I’m speaking to you. Ma’am?” said the flight attendant, in a video shared to Twitter. “You have to wear your mask the whole entire flight. If you’re unable to do so you will be removed from the flight.”

As the flight attendant walked away the woman yelled after her, “Thanks, a**hole.”

“Okay, you’re done. Let’s go,” said the flight attendant, returning. “You’re getting off the aircraft. Come on. You’re done, you’re not going to speak to me like that. You have to comply. You agreed to this when you checked into our flight and you bought your ticket so I need you to get off the aircraft at this time.”

Karen said she was refusing so airport security was called to remove her.

As she left, the cabin applauded and someone said “bye Karen.”


Travelers Swarm Phoenix Airport Despite CDC COVID Thanksgiving Travel Recommendations: WATCH

Sat, 21 Nov 2020 14:30:53 +0000

The CDC has recommended that Americans not travel for Thanksgiving in the face of surging COVID-19 cases across the nation that are overwhelming hospitals. That hasn’t stopped travelers from swarming Sky Harbor Airport in Phoenix, according to CBS Arizona reporter Max Gorden, who published a video from a viewer.

Dr. Henry Walke, the CDC’s Covid-19 incident manager, told reporters this week that the agency was recommending Americans not travel for the holiday: “It’s not a requirement. It’s a recommendation for the American public to consider. Right now, especially as we’re seeing this sort of exponential growth in cases, and the opportunity to translocate disease or infection from one part of the country to another, it leads to our recommendation to avoid travel at this time.”

Here are the CDC’s Thanksgiving recommendations.

What are your plans?


Falling in Love with — and in — Key West

Thu, 12 Nov 2020 21:28:12 +0000

John (L) and Michael (R) recently relocated to Key West after years of visiting.

When John first took his husband Michael, then his boyfriend, to Key West, it was a major turning point in their relationship.

“It was literally the first time I had ever gone on a trip like this with someone I was dating,” Michael recounted recently over a Zoom call. “I think I actually cried at the airport over our mimosas.”

“You cried when we checked into our room!” John chimed in.

Now, the pair has gone from frequent Florida visitors to full-time residents. After years of traveling from New York to Key West, John and Michael could no longer resist the pull of the popular LGBTQ travel destination. The pair hopped in their car in July and drove straight down to Key West, their new home.


Sure they were trading skyscrapers and subway trains for palm trees and swimming pools, but the Conch Republic and the Big Apple might have more in common than some visitors realize.

“It’s like New York because there’s a very engaged community,” John said. “It’s like New York in that it’s fairly liberal, politically, in regard to social justice and especially the environment.”

Michael (L) and John (R) on a previous visit to Key West.

Also like New York, Key West boasts tons of great dining. However, the idyllic climate means even more options for spreading out and enjoying a meal in the fresh air.

“That was part of our calculus in moving down here in the first place,” John confessed. “Outdoor dining is practical all year-round.”

It’s not difficult to find good food in Key West, but John and Michael were eager to dish on some of their favorites, including the adorable French bakery and bistro, La Grignote (French for “the snack”). Scrumptious French pastries are made on-site daily, while owners Joel and Babette’s dog greets customers wearing a signature “Don’t Feed Me” scarf. (More for us, we say.)

John and Michael frequently visit one of local cabaret legend Randy Roberts‘ favorite haunts: the beloved Point5, upstairs from another Duval Street staple, Nine One Five. Grab an open-air spot and enjoy gazing down at Duval while sampling one of Executive Chef Brendan Orr’s signature small bites. It’s the perfect spot to cap off a day of shopping along Duval, supporting the local business community, including the island’s longest-running, gay-owned and operated retail space, Graffitti.

Snorkel the clear waters off of Woman Key

There’s a lot more to do outdoors in Key West than just eat and shop.

The sunny weather and inviting water also make it an ideal location to try kayaking, snorkeling, jet skis or a private tour aboard the island’s famous clothing-optional boat, Blu Q.

It’s tough to resist, even if you’re not typically aquatically adventurous.

“I am a consummate Earth sign,” said Michael. “Even the concept of snorkeling or going out into open water in the ocean was initially terrifying.”

“You were a trooper though!” John reassured him.

John sitting poolside at Island House on a previous vacation.

Not all water sports are so action-packed. Key West’s LGBTQ nightlife soldiers on, with many bars and resorts taking advantage of their outdoor space to allow patrons to spread out. The famed all-male, clothing-optional resort, Island House, for example, has expanded its café seating poolside in lieu of lounge chairs. Or, the guys recommend grabbing a poolside drink in the large backyard at Bourbon Street.

Of course, whether you’re a resident or just visiting, there’s one signature Key West experience that’s always worth a stop: Sunset at Mallory Square. In fact, it was one of the things John was most excited to show Michael on that first trip years ago.

“I was excited for him to see all the artists and the street performers at sunset at Mallory Square,” John said. “It hits all the marks: Beautiful sunset, you can appreciate nature, the tropical climate and you’re surrounded by local performers doing their thing, hustling and making their living.”

John (L) and Michael (R)

“It’s definitely a thing we constantly go back to, because it’s sort of a benchmark for the things we love about this place,” Michael added. “I’m a working artist, so going into a town where it was immediately very quirky and supported local art and kind of supported weirdness in general and being their authentic selves, that for me was the draw, ultimately.”


Two Men Shot to Death Outside Puerto Vallarta Gay Bar ‘Paco’s Ranch’

Thu, 29 Oct 2020 12:50:12 +0000

Two men were shot to death early on Tuesday outside one of Puerto Vallarta’s largest gay bars in the city’s Zona Romantica.

RECENTLY: Puerto Vallarta’s Mantamar Beach Club Fined After Men are Filmed Having Sex in See-Through Pool

Vallarta Daily reports that a dispute inside the bar prompted two people to begin fighting outside. According to reports, one man left the scene, returning with a gun, and shot two people.

PVDN reports: “The alleged murderer’s identity and whereabouts are unknown. Of the victims, it was only known that they were 2 men between 30 and 40 years of age. No other information has been released. Paco’s Ranch was hosting an HIV Fundraiser without following government guidelines, and assuming some attendees would be HIV positive, could be at higher risk for COVID-19. The bar did not have social distancing or a mask policy for attendees at a time where two hospitals in Puerto Vallarta are saturated and cases have increased by 25% in the past week in the city.”

Two local news reports (Spanish):


Puerto Vallarta’s Mantamar Beach Club Fined After Men are Filmed Having Sex in See-Through Pool

Thu, 15 Oct 2020 13:29:24 +0000

Puerto Vallarta’s Mantamar Beach Club, a hub of the gay scene in the Mexican resort town, was fined this week after men were filmed having sex in a transparent pool that faces the beach.

The Mazatlan Post reported: “The Mantamar beach club paid a fine of 22,179.60 pesos (just over $1,000 USD) this week, for having allowed sex in one of its transparent pools. The information was confirmed today by official sources, it was learned that the representatives of this beach club made the payment that municipal courts set them last week. It is also confirmed that the regulation department did not order a closure and the beach club continues to work as usual.”


Machu Picchu Opens for Single Japanese Tourist Who Waited 7 Months to See It

Tue, 13 Oct 2020 12:59:00 +0000

Peru’s ancient Incan settlement of Machu Picchu was opened on Saturday for a single Japanese tourist who had waited seven months, stranded by the COVID pandemic, to see it. The Cusco tourist authority got wind of Jesse Katayama’s plight and opened the wonder, which has been closed since March, just for him, AFP reports.

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マチュピチュキタァァァァァァァァァァァァァァァァァァ‼‼‼ この前の新聞見てくれて 「頑張って」「応援してる」 「なんでも頼って」 「マチュピチュの俺の家タダで使ってええよ」 「マチュピチュ開いたらタダでガイドしたる」 「マチュピチュ村の村長に行ける様に言っとくわ」 ペルーの人達、ペルーに住んでる日本の人達から沢山メッセージもらいました😂 もう行けへんやろなと思ってたけど、皆さんが村長、政府に頼んでくれて 超特別に行かせてもらった👏🏽笑 ペルーの人達みんな優しすぎるぅ〜くぅ〜 本当にありがとうございます!! 村長と一緒にマチュピチュいった人今までおらんやろ笑 閉鎖後、1番最初にマチュピチュ行った地球人は俺だぁぁぁぁぁ🔥🔥🔥 #世界一周 #バックパッカー #27ヵ国目 #ペルー #マチュピチュ #貸し切り #村長のガイド付き #村長ごっつ男前 #トムクルーズ似なんよ #ミッションインポッシブルなんよ #peru #machupicchu #lastsamurai

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Wrote Katayama on Instagram: “The first person on Earth who went to Machu Picchu since the lockdown is meeeeeee!!! I thought that I wouldn’t be able to go, but thanks to all of you who pleaded with the mayor and the government, I was given this super special opportunity.”

Machu Picchu is scheduled to reopen to visitors in November, AFP adds: “Just 675 tourists a day will be allowed in, 30 percent of the number allowed before the pandemic, with visitors expected to maintain social distancing. Since it first opened to tourists in 1948, it has been closed just once before, for two months in 2010 when a flood destroyed the railway tracks connecting it to Cusco.”


Seth Sikes Channels His Inner Judy for a Tribute to Fire Island and its Ferry: WATCH

Sat, 01 Aug 2020 17:31:34 +0000

Seth Sikes fire island ferry

Fire Island Pines, the gay getaway approximately 90-minutes from New York City, made headlines several weeks ago when several videos spread across social media of gay men partying with nary a mask in sight and little to no social distancing. Since that round of incredibly bad publicity, a group has worked to ensure that rules are obeyed by hiring drag queens and go-go boys to hand out masks and sanitizer.

Cabaret singer Seth Sikes, who has had his gigs canceled due to the pandemic, offers another take on the island with this cheery and colorful parody of the Oscar-winning Johnny Mercer classic, “Atchison, Topeka and the Santa Fe” (covered by Judy Garland, Bing Crosby,and others) which highlights the transportation rituals and rules of this glammed-out sand bar.

“And don’t forget your mask or you’ll be sent home fast.”


Florida Keys to Reopen to Tourists on June 1 After Two Month Coronavirus Lockdown

Mon, 18 May 2020 12:44:56 +0000

Sunday afternoon tea dance at La Te Da

Sunday afternoon tea dance at La Te Da before social distancing.

The Florida Keys are set to reopen to tourists on June 1 after a two month lockdown amid the coronavirus crisis.

The Miami Herald reports: “The Florida Keys will reopen to tourists June 1 by removing the checkpoints at the entrances to the island chain and allowing hotels to reopen at 50 percent occupancy, Monroe County leaders announced Sunday night. This is contingent on the state of the novel coronavirus in the Keys, county spokeswoman Kristen Livengood said in a news release sent out at about 7:30 p.m. The decision to reopen was made in light of the Keys’ low COVID-19 infection rate in comparison to neighboring hotspots Miami-Dade and Broward counties.”


It’s Time to Stop: A Message from Portugal’s Tourism Board That Everyone Should See — WATCH

Sun, 22 Mar 2020 12:39:59 +0000

Tourism boards and tourists across the world should take heed of Visit Portugal’s message about the international COVID-19 outbreak. It is a calming, instructive message, and a hopeful one.

Says the ad’s narrator: “It’s time to stop. It’s time to look out for each other in the distance. Time to stare humanity in the eyes, to take a break for the world. It’s time to stop. Time to take a pause, so we can play again. To think of everyone, and meet no one. To reset, recenter, switch off, to move on. Time to change our little world, to calibrate the path of mankind. It’s time to stop. We are meant to connect, and we are stronger together, but separated, we are today more united than ever. And for now our main strength is to be apart.”

“Nature, landscapes, beaches and monuments aren’t going anywhere,” the ad continues. “They will still be there waiting for a better time to be lived. And we must do the same for a while. It’s time to stop. The perfect time not to visit anything. Sometimes to rise is to stand still. It’s time to stop, stop and think of ourselves, think of everyone else too. It’s time to stop and refocus as a whole, for all. It’s time to understand and respect our times, respect one another. The faster we stop the sooner we will bond again. It’s time to dream of those amazing days to come.”


Atlantis Events Cancels March 21 Gay Caribbean Cruise, Postpones Others Amid Coronavirus Crisis

Sat, 14 Mar 2020 14:50:41 +0000

LGBTQ cruise company Atlantis Events announced on Friday that they are canceling all cruises through mid-April including one set to depart on March 21 to the Caribbean and postponing future departures until further notice.

Wrote the company: “All cruises have been cancelled through April 13 and thus our sailing on Celebrity Summit will not sail as planned March 21-28,2020. We will contact all booked guests by email with next steps regarding this cruise by Monday, March 16. Please do not contact our office until that time as we have no further information.”

“In addition, Virgin Voyages has postponed the launch of Scarlet Lady, as such our Virgin Caribbean Cruise has been postponed,” they added. “We will be sending further details to guests booked on that cruise as well. We love showing all of you a great time and look forward to many more exciting cruises in better times. Stay tuned for more and again a huge thank you to everyone out there. We truly appreciate your patience. Please stay safe and use this time wisely so we all get through this.”

Atlantis had come under fire in recent days for refusing to issue refunds for its March 25 Caribbean cruise to more than 50 customers who had requested them, NBC News reported.

The U.S. State Department issued a warning last Sunday on cruise ships: “U.S. citizens, particularly travelers with underlying health conditions, should not travel by cruise ship at this time.  CDC notes increased risk of infection of COVID-19 in a cruise ship environment. In order to curb the spread of COVID-19, many countries have implemented strict screening procedures that have denied port entry rights to ships and prevented passengers from disembarking.  In some cases, local authorities have permitted disembarkation but subjected passengers to local quarantine procedures.  While the U.S. government has evacuated some cruise ship passengers in recent weeks, repatriation flights should not be relied upon as an option for U.S. citizens under the potential risk of quarantine by local authorities.”


L.A. Pride is Not Until June — But It Has Been Postponed, as Has (Most of) Miami Beach Pride This Month

Fri, 13 Mar 2020 11:36:09 +0000

Organizers of L.A. Pride are not taking any chances and have postponed all events related to its 50th anniversary this June due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Wrote organizers in a tweet: “Due to the concerns of COVID-19, CSW will postpone all events related to the 50th Anniversary of LA Pride that were scheduled for June 2020. Organizers are assessing the situation. More information to be provided around the postponement as details become available.”

Miami Beach Pride was scheduled to take place from March 28 – April 5, and organizers have postponed all but a few symbolic events.

They write: “Upon further collaboration today with the mayor of Miami Beach and our health-related partners, the Board of Directors of Miami Beach Pride has announced the rescheduling of the 2020 Pride event, with the exception of the smaller, outdoor events scheduled for Monday, March 30. The decision was based on safeguarding the health of the event’s guests, sponsors, volunteers, staff and community-at-large. Monday night’s events will go on as scheduled as a symbol of solidarity with the LGBTQ+ community. Those events include the rainbow flag raising ceremony at Miami Beach City Hall, the Pulse Nightclub remembrance ceremony at 1111 Lincoln Road and the pop-up art gallery exhibition at the rooftop of 817 N. Lincoln Lane.”

The other Pride events will be rescheduled for a later date.


Police Won’t Prosecute Group of Men for Hurling Alleged Homophobic Abuse at Lesbian on Ryanair Flight

Mon, 02 Mar 2020 17:53:37 +0000

Police said there will be no prosecution of alleged homophobic abuse from a group of men toward a lesbian couple on a Ryanair flight from Stansted to Seville in June.

Laura Muldoon, a social media manager for the Museum of London, said the group chanted that she was a “miserable bitch,” a “dyke” and a “lesbo” and that the crew on the Ryanair flight did nothing about it.

The BBC reports: “Ms Muldoon and another woman made a complaint to Essex Police. Police said ‘evidential difficulties’ prevented the ‘realistic prospect of a successful prosecution’. An Essex Police spokeswoman added that officers conducted ‘extensive inquiries’ and a man was interviewed voluntarily. … In a letter to Ms Muldoon, Ryanair said it prided itself on its crew’s high standards of service. The said it regretted its high standards were ‘not reflected’ to her ‘on this occasion’.”


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