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Pride Galveston Is Making Waves

Pride Galveston LGBTQ

As we begin our journey into June, we also foray into Pride Month. And what could be better in the heat of summer than a seaside Pride celebration just a short drive down to Galveston?

(GALVESTON) – With all the excitement in the news surrounding The Woodlands’ inaugural Pride festival and the vamped-up bustle of Pride Houston’s 40th Anniversary, it’s good to remember that all across the state of Texas, Pride festivals are prepping for action. Galveston, Texas, the island town known for its rich history and exuberant attractions, is no stranger to the LGBTQIA community. With queer bars staggered across the island and a large population of LGBTQIA people, its no wonder why Pride Galveston is hustling into its sophomore year with a three-day celebration that is certain to … well … make waves.

 

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Kiki Dion Von Wales

And though this is only the second annual Pride Galveston, its certain to be a big year with events spanning from Friday, June 8th until Sunday, June 10th. Friday brings about the annual Mr. & Miss Pride Galveston Pageant at local gay bar, 23rd St. Station at 10 PM. Saturday will consist of the annual Beach Bash at East Beach from 10 AM to 5 PM, immediately followed by the Pride Galveston Block Party (also at 23rd St. Station) from 5 PM until 10 PM. The block party will be headlined by Mykul J. Valentine and Tiffany Hunter, who will be performing along with DJ Chris Luera featuring Athenz. Once again at 23rd, Sunday will wrap up the weekend with T-Dance.

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DJ Jamie Fuller-Waymire

 

But, again, this is only Pride Galveston’s second year (and its first as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit). Before 2017, the Pride celebrations in Galveston were sparse and existed under different names, which was noted by married couple and Pride Galveston founders Jamie and Terry Fuller-Waymire, who took over for last year’s Pride. Jamie, a local DJ and promoter, and his husband Terry, who is more famously known in drag as Kiki Dion Van Wales, have put all their eggs into the proverbial basket with Pride Galveston, and the city has been there to back them up. Walgreens, Antiques Amour, Galveston.com + Co., and many more have become sponsors of Pride Galveston 2018. And because About Magazine is also an official sponsor of Pride Galveston, we got to chat with the aforementioned dynamic duo behind the big event.


About Magazine: Can you give me a brief history of Pride Galveston before you two took over? 

Currently, the event is officially called Pride Galveston. Before we took over the last time it [a Pride celebration] was held was in 2013, and was under the banner of Galveston Pride. From 2009 until 2012 it was called Pride Fest. So, there was a 4-year gap when there was no official Pride celebration in Galveston. There were some informal beach events that a now-defunct local bar called Third Coast organized. The current home bar for Pride Galveston is 23rd St. Station.

What led to you taking on the challenge of taking this task on?

We wanted to revive Pride in Galveston; and it all started last year as just a beach bash and it just took off within a few months time. That is when we decided to add the block party to accommodate everyone. Some folks wanted just the beach, others wanted a block party, and many wanted both. Then the idea of a Mr. & Miss Pride Pageant was presented to us and, with our previous pageant promotion experience, this was an obvious event we needed to add. This year, of course, Pride is a 3-day event with the addition of the T-Dance on Sunday with a host of male and female dancers.

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Pride Galveston Block Party 2017

Last year was the first year the two of you ran Pride Galveston (correct me if I’m wrong). What do you think you learned from that event and what do you think you’re going to change this year?

Correct. Last year was our first go at Pride Galveston, and we learned a lot last year as I am sure we will learn a lot this year. For instance, last year the event exploded so fast that we learned to take on volunteers as often as we could. It can be a bit overwhelming organizing the pageant, the beach bash, the block party, and the T-Dance. There are so many variables involved, like DJ setup for the beach (a free event, save for parking), food organizing (which was free last year and [is] again this year), setting up the vendors and sponsors at the block party (another free event), setting up the stage, setting up the effects lighting, bringing in Porta Potties, extra trash bins, coordinating with the city on road closure and police allocation. Next year we are looking to put the block party and beach bash on different days so it’s not so overwhelming.

Since last year we have developed our websites, which both provide a wealth of information about the upcoming events on June 8, 9, & 10, 2018. The websites also allow for vendor sign-up, sponsor sign-up, pageant sign-up, and there is also a handy contact link if more information is needed.

“The greatest reward is seeing all the smiling faces of folks who are happy to see Pride back on the island.”

There are lots of events going on that are PG-related. Tell us about some of those?

Pride Galveston 2018 gets underway on Friday June 8th, 2018 with the Mr. & Miss Pride Galveston Pageant which starts at promptly at 9 PM at 23rd St. Station. The winners will reign as Mr. & Miss Pride Galveston for one year. The prize package includes a big crown for each winner, a brilliant Pride sash, category awards, future bookings with Island Diva Promotions as the reigning Mr. & Miss Pride Galveston 2018, and a cash prize as well!

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Pride Galveston Beach Bash 2017

Saturday June 9th, 2018, is a big day with the Beach Bash getting underway at 9 AM and running until 5 PM (an all ages event). The Beach Bash will have (from Numbers fame) DJ Houseman spinning live on the beach under the Pride Galveston canopies. We will also be serving free hotdogs under the Pride Galveston canopies and you can meet your hosts: Jamie Waymire (DJ Jamie) & Terry Fuller (Kiki Dion Van Wales). Some of our entertainers will also be present on the beach. Immediately following the Beach Bash, the Block Party gets underway at 5 PM (a free event for all ages) with live DJs Chris Luera & Athenz. We will also have some street performers present, as well as many vendors who will be selling Pride-related items, food, miscellaneous items, and services. The big show outside at the Block Party will get under way at 8 PM with our headliners, Tiffany Hunter and Mykul Valentine, both of who have won national pageant titles — royalty in the flesh! The Block Party ends at 10 PM and everything shifts inside to 23rd St. Station, which is 21 and up to get in with no cover. The back patio will have live DJs battling for the crowd, and there will be numerous roaming dancers both male and female to delight the crowd. The party at 23rd St. Station continues until 2 AM. On Sunday, June 10th, the T-Dance takes place at 23 St. Station with no cover starting at noon with free food, roaming dancers both inside and on the patio in the back. Pride concludes Sunday evening.

What is the significance of Galveston having its own Pride celebration?

We felt like the city needed its own Pride Celebration again so that our residents and tourists have a tool of empowerment which increases visibility. Our incarnation of Pride Galveston celebrates our community as a whole, not just gay, lesbian, trans, bi, queer, but our straight allies as well. We want it to be an all-inclusive celebration and feel like it is time to unite as one, rather than be divided into categories. We feel like the mission and meaning of Pride needs to evolve for the future and not be left in the past as a relic of days gone by.

How do people who want to help out volunteer to be a part of Pride Galveston?

Anyone who wishes to volunteer for Pride Galveston can go here and we will be sure to respond ASAP. We can use all the help we can get. We learned last year that it’s very hard to do without help.

What’s the biggest challenge in throwing a Pride celebration together? What are the greatest rewards?

The biggest challenge to putting together a Pride celebration is coordination with all the people, venues, and variable involved to make it work. We work closely with the city of Galveston to make this event a success and have the support needed to complete our mission. The greatest reward is seeing all the smiling faces of folks who are happy to see Pride back on the island. We made sure all of our events were free to attend so that even those with limited income could join us. This is why sponsors are so vital! They make these events possible and free!

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Mr. & Miss Pride Galveston 2017

Safety is always a big issue and something that everyone wants to ensure. What safety measures are being taken to protect those coming to the festival?

Glad this question was asked and we have this concern covered! The Galveston Police Department will be at both entry points to the block party and will ensure a peaceful event. We also will have up fencing this year and access to the event will be strictly controlled. No firearms are allowed, and no food or beverage will be allowed in or out of the event. We will also have many volunteers help keep watch over the event.

What are you most excited about for Pride? 

We are most excited to see the growth and all the smiling faces that will occur due to the event. For instance, last year we had a make-shift stage that I (Jamie) built with minimal lighting and sound. This year is much different as we have a full-on stage thanks to our friends at Stagedrop.com, a mobile dressing room complete with an AC unit for the outdoor entertainers, and full-range lighting and sound systems!

What are some ways that the community can do to help support Pride Galveston and make it a huge success?

Getting the word out the primary way to support Pride Galveston and make it an even bigger success than its first year! Volunteers, sponsors, and vendors all help to promote the event, but word of mouth in the community is key! Of course, directing those who wish to participate in some form can be directed to our Facebook Event Page or at the previously mentioned websites.

Are there any details I’m missing that you’d like to let me everyone know?

The big change over last year is that we are now officially a non-profit entity. Last years success prompted the application with the State and subsequent approval. We are so excited about this year’s events and look forward to growing in the years to come. We even added a board member, Mr. Jon Vance, who is a local pageant promoter as well with the Continental pageant system. We have him to thank for bringing in Tiffany Hunter and Mykul Valentine. He is also a sponsor, along with his husband Dean Weir under their JD Productions banner. We hope to see everyone come out and have a blast this year!

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Houston Gets a Cannabis Academy

Dana Carmouche Houston Academy of Cannabis Science Texas education

(HOUSTON) – Houston is going to be getting its very own school for cannabis studies beginning July 14th, 2018. The Houston Academy of Cannabis Science will be led by Dana Carmouche, who holds an MBA in Marketing in Management from the University of Houston, as well as an MA in clinical psychology from Texas Southern University. As of right now, Carmouche and her team are looking to hold symposiums leading up to the beginning of their semester in and around the Houston area to inform potential students about the school’s mission and the importance and health benefits of medicinal cannabis use. Read more here about what the school is about, what they have to offer, and how to get enrolled:


Mission: To be compassionate, educative and have a perspective to provide students with the most complete information available about the medical cannabis industry through a complete curriculum designed for professionals, entrepreneurs and patients. Also, illustrate the legal statutes that governs in each state to promote a respectful and ethical access to medical cannabis. We encourage the rise of this emerging industry that envisages important contributions to health, through the constitution of a public, perfectly informed about the subject. Houston is known for its medical centers, health professionals, and for those who prefer a more artistic stream. Houston is also known as a paradise for art and culture…so what is missing?

Our goal is to make Houston the most referenced city in medical cannabis education. People from all over the world seek medical treatment here in Houston. They cross oceans and continents to speak with our world-renowned medical professionals, receive sound advice, and find alternatives to help them improve their health. Similarly, we will teach entrepreneurs keys to open this new and continuous business opportunity, afforded to us by the cannabis industry. Chemist and cultivators will be the catalyst between the benefits of the land and the medical needs of this industry.

Houston Academy of Cannabis Science (HACS) is working daily to be an advocate for those who have yet to understand the benefits of the cannabis industry. We have structured 5 different courses designed to educate both medical and legal professionals, as well as provide tools to successfully educate the entrepreneurs and communities, adversely impacted by the war on drugs.

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Medical/Legal Industrial Hemp Manufacturing

Houston Academy of Cannabis Science offers continuing education credit for Attorneys (CLE) and (CME) for Doctors is pending. 

We will be hosting several informative symposiums, to provide pertinent information regarding upcoming courses. The owner of Houston Academy of Cannabis Science, Dana Carmouche-MBA will be our speaker. Time will be allotted for Q&A, coupled with an opportunity to register for our highly anticipated 5-week course, being held July 14, 2018 through August 11th, 2018. The courses will be located at the University of Houston-Student Center South, from 9am-4pm every Saturday.

A Certification from Houston Academy of Cannabis Science is recognized by cannabis employers in states of legalization, as a premier cannabis certification. Certification has never been more important, as cannabis laws are being reformed across the United States and more businesses are looking to hire employees with proven medicinal cannabis knowledge. Our certification is the best way for you to prove to them that you have extensive knowledge on the subject.


For information on our symposium and/or our upcoming 5-week course, please feel free to reach out to us at 1.888.744.1119 or via the email/web. We look forward to seeing and speaking with you.

Win Tickets to Kesha and Macklemore in The Woodlands

Enter to win tickets to ‘The Adventures of Kesha and Macklemore’ Summer Tour!

Kesha and Macklemore are teaming up this summer for ‘The Adventures of Kesha and Macklemore’ tour. The nine-week, 30-market tour pairs the two trailblazing artists for an epic summer trek of North American amphitheaters and arenas!

Enter now for your chance to see Kesha and Macklemore live on June 23 at The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion in The Woodlands, TX! To enter, leave a comment at the bottom of this article telling us your favorite Kesha or Macklemore song, then share this article on Facebook. Winners will be selected at random on Friday, June 1st, 2018.

KM_postcardfront_lo Win Tickets to Kesha and Macklemore in The Woodlands


Buy tickets here: www.KeshaOfficial.com

Follow Kesha on social media:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/Kesha

Twitter: www.twitter.com/KeshaRose

Instagram: www.instagram.com/iiswhoiis

Kesha’s album Rainbow is available now: http://smarturl.it/iKRainbow


Follow Macklemore on social media:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/Macklemore

Twitter: www.twitter.com/Macklemore

Instagram: www.instagram.com/Macklemore

Macklemore’s album Gemini is available now: https://t.co/tPFRZcn1k6


THE ADVENTURES OF KESHA AND MACKLEMORE TOUR

June 6 • Phoenix, AZ • Ak-Chin Pavilion

June 8 • Inglewood, CA • The Forum

June 9 • Las Vegas, NV • Mandalay Bay Events Center

June 12 • Chula Vista, CA • Mattress Firm Amphitheatre

June 14 • Mountain View, CA • Shoreline Amphitheatre

June 16 • Salt Lake City, UT • USANA Amphitheatre

June 17 • Denver, CO • Pepsi Center

June 20 • Dallas, TX • Dos Equis Pavilion

June 22 • Austin, • Austin360 Amphitheater

June 23 • The Woodlands, TX • The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion presented by Huntsman

June 25 • Rogers, AR • Arkansas Music Pavilion

June 26 • Kansas City, MO • Sprint Center

July 10 • Maryland Heights, MO • Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre

July 11 • Cincinnati, OH • Riverbend Music Center

July 13 • Nashville, TN • Bridgestone Arena

July 14 • Tinley Park, IL • Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre

July 16 • Toronto, ON • Budweiser Stage

July 18 • Clarkston, MI • DTE Energy Music Theatre

July 19 • Noblesville, IN • Ruoff Home Mortgage Music Center

July 21 • Hershey, PA • Hersheypark Stadium

July 22 • Darien Center, NY • Darien Lake Amphitheater

July 24 • Mansfield, MA • Xfinity Center

July 25 • Camden, NJ • BB&T Pavilion

July 27 • Holmdel, NJ • PNC Bank Arts Center

July 28 • Bristow, VA • Jiffy Lube Live

July 30 • Wantagh, NY • Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater

August 1 • Charlotte, NC • PNC Music Pavilion Charlotte

August 2 • Atlanta, GA • Cellairis Amphitheatre at Lakewood

August 4 • Miami, FL • AmericanAirlines Arena

August 5 • Tampa, FL • MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre

Pride Comes to The Woodlands

The Woodlands, Texas, an affluent township north of Houston, is getting its very own Pride celebration and they sat down to talk to About Magazine about it first.

If you’re a native of Houston, or if you’ve been a transplant long enough to have made your rounds in and out of the metropolitan area, you probably are at least somewhat familiar with the Woodlands. Located just 30 miles from Downtown Houston, The Woodlands has been around since 1974, when oil industry investor George P. Mitchell (yes, that’s right, husband of Cynthia Woods Mitchell, the namesake of the performance pavilion) attended a conference on developing HUD Title VII towns. For Millennials who grew up in Houston and its surrounding areas, The Woodlands was sort of an escapist township – the place with the lake that had its very own animatronic monster, the place with the giant mall that had the carousel. But in the last ten years, the Woodlands has seen a boom not only in business, but in infrastructure, population, and net worth.

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The Woodlands’ Waterway

The Woodlands now serves as a sort of city of its own. Recently, the township has introduced new dining and shopping establishments along the coast of Lake Woodlands, introduced its very own San Antonio-esque waterway (which is still growing in terms of business), and countless new residences throughout its 43.9 sq mi spread. Spreading from the Sawdust Rd. area all the way up to Research Forest, The Woodlands is only growing continuously. And while the residents are majority Christian, right-wingers, that isn’t stopping the newly founded The Woodlands Pride (TWP) from setting up shop to the LGBTQIA community, which will be hosted on September 8th, 2018

About Magazine has the lucky fortune of running the first interview with TWP’s director of public relations, Ryan Elkins.


About Magazine: What brought about the idea to give The Woodlands its own Pride, and who came up with it?

The idea was brought up by Jason Rocha, our CEO. After a walk along the waterway, where he envisioned a Pride event, he began to make some calls and reach out to community activists in The Woodlands and surrounding areas about forming a committee to organize a Pride Festival.

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The Woodlands’ Market Street

With The Woodlands being a community of diversity and welcoming to people from all walks of life, The Woodlands is [now] ready and has been ready for quite some time for an event like this. [It’s] a festival to show unity, love, and support for the LGBTQIA community. The Woodlands has never given our community a fair opportunity, mostly due to the fact that the LGBTQIA community has never been presented with an event like this in the area. So we are excited to show our support for The Woodlands and surrounding areas, as we know they feel the same about us.

What can we expect from TWP? Will it be different from Pride Houston?

You can expect TWP to be different than any other pride; just as no pride event in any community is the same.  We often attend Pride Houston and other events, so we hope our friends and allies in the Greater Houston Area will come and support us!

The Woodlands is a pretty conservative area of town. Are you all worried there may be some backlash from those in the community?

We are only focused on the positive and our mission. To connect, celebrate, educate and foster relationships in the LGBTQIA community while promoting equality, unity, and love in The Woodlands and beyond. We love our community. That’s why we’re here. We are looking forward to contribute and enhance why The Woodlands is so special.

What is TWP most excited about for this event?

TWP is most excited about organizing the first Pride Festival in The Woodlands! This is just the beginning of many great things to come not only for The Woodlands and surrounding areas, but for the LGBTQIA community as a whole.

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Town Green Park where TWP will be held

I used to live in the Woodlands off Research and can attest to the fact that it feels like its own little city (and has been reported to be the fastest-growing city in the United States). Do you think that the expansion and constant growth of the Woodlands marks it time to establish your own Pride?

Absolutely. With the constant growth of The Woodlands, and the diversity of people moving here from all types of backgrounds, 2018 is the year to establish our own Pride. So, why not now?

Do you think that in years to come you’ll continue to celebrate TWP in September? What made September feel like the right time?

More than likely, we will celebrate The Woodlands Pride in September moving forward. We want to respect our neighbors to the south, Pride Houston, as well as hope for slightly cooler weather.

In the past, society has set a date or month to celebrate Pride when our community was tolerated. But now that we are accepted, everyday is Pride day!

“We are only focused on the positive and our mission. To connect, celebrate, educate and foster relationships in the LGBTQIA community while promoting equality, unity, and love in The Woodlands and beyond.”

Tell me about the team at TWP. Who should we be thanking for making all of this come to life? Are some of you new to working for Pride orgs, or are some of you seasoned in it?

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The Woodlands Pride Board of Directors

TWP has an incredible group of individuals on our board of directors, and this is truly a group effort!

We have two political activists that both previously ran for office, two veteran board members for other pride organizations, and other local leaders.

Everyone brings their own strengths and valuable experience to the table that is going to make our Pride Festival on September 8th a huge success.

Who we should be thanking is The Woodlands and surrounding areas for expressing their love and support. This is a celebration for the LGBTQIA and our allies.

Are there any important details that we should know about? Dates, times, etc.?

Yes, save the date! The Woodlands Pride Festival will be on September 8th, 2018! We are still working on the minor details such as the time, before and after events, as well as fundraisers. But to receive the latest updates, follow us at ‘The Woodlands Pride’ on Facebook and Instagram. As well as @WoodlandsPride on Twitter and Snapchat.


You can RSVP to TWP on Facebook here.