LGBT retirement community opens in rural Maryland
A businessman from Dallas has opened Maryland’s first LGBT retirement community about 25 miles west of Baltimore.
The Stonewall Retirement Community, a resort-style residence for LGBT seniors anchored by a 12,000-square-foot structure atop a five-acre lot, is located in Howard County’s farming town of Woodbine. The facility can accommodate up to 14 singles or couples.
Scott Streit, Stonewall Retirement Community’s owner, said he’s targeting “the post-Stonewall and pre-‘Will & Grace’” generation with the venture.
The house features an outdoor pool that will be heated for year-round use, an eight-person hot tub, two barbeques, two laundry facilities, three kitchens, and a theater room with more than 500 DVDs. Other amenities include three large decks, wireless Internet and private baths with Jacuzzis.
Residency costs vary, depending on single or double occupancy and the desired setup. Prices start with a 650-square-foot, single-occupancy room with a small kitchen at $2,000 per month. At the top end is Stonewall’s 1,000-square-foot, double-occupancy room with a full kitchen and laundry at $3,750 per month, which includes two meals daily in the dining facility and a shopping service.
A complete cost model breakdown and amenity list is available on Stonewall’s web site, stonewallretirement.com.
Streit said it’s his hope that the shared lifestyle and activities among residents will bring a sense of community. Events keyed to New Year’s Day, Pride celebrations and Halloween, among others, are planned.
STEVE CHARING/BALTIMORE OUTLoud
D.C. man convicted of anti-gay hate crime
A jury has found a D.C. man guilty of bias-related assault and threats against a 67-year-old gay man, who authorities say was the subject of “an almost daily barrage of name-calling and harassment.”
Police said Anthony Wright targeted the elderly man along the 1200 block of Eaton Road, S.E., between June and August. At trial, police testified that Wright committed the assault and made threats to do bodily harm solely because of the victim’s sexual orientation.
Under the city’s hate crimes law, the maximum penalty Wright faces is 1.5 times greater than that of a similar set of offenses not listed as bias-related. According to the U.S. Attorney’s office, this means Wright could receive up to 270 days in jail for each of the two crimes.
A statement from the U.S. Attorney’s office notes that Wright’s name-calling against the victim “went on unabated for more than two years” before his actions turned violent on June 6. The statement says at that point, Wright punched the victim as he was sitting outside his apartment building. After that assault, police arrested Wright. He was released later that day.
“Upon his release, Wright returned back to the apartment building and proclaimed to the people standing outside, including the victim, that ‘they don’t lock you up for hitting faggots,’” says the statement. It says Wright continued his verbal harassment for another two months before threatening to stab him, a development that prompted police to arrest Wright for the second offense of bias-related threats.
Wright was found guilty April 28. D.C. Superior Court Judge Anthony Epstein was scheduled to sentence Wright on Wednesday, after Blade deadline.
LOU CHIBBARO JR.
New bus route ties D.C. to Delaware beaches
The gay men behind the DC2NY bus line will debut a new route over Memorial Day weekend tying D.C. to Delaware’s Rehoboth Beach and Dewey Beach.
Richard Green, DC2NY’s chief executive officer, said the new route will continue weekend trips between Delaware and Washington through Labor Day weekend. Ticket prices are $39 each way or $70 for a round trip. Departure times vary; a schedule will be posted soon at dc2ny.com.
“We’ve determined there’s enough interest that we’re going to do the entire summer season,” he said.
Previously, Rehobus shuttled customers between D.C. and Rehoboth Beach. That service, which began in 2007 and charged riders about $40 each way, ended after the 2008 summer travel season.
Since that venture ended, Green said “enough people have been asking for this service” that DC2NY decided to explore the market.
“Whether we make money or not, we want to do it this year as a service to the community,” he said. “We’re hoping to at least break even, but we’re committed to doing it this year to really give it a chance.”