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Calendar: Feb. 7-13

Parties, performances and events in the week to come

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gay events dc, gay news, Washington Blade
Desiree Dik hosts an evening of holiday drag entertainment on Feb. 11. (Photo by Katherine Gaines of AmbientEye Photography)

Friday, Feb. 7

Tonight is District 1st Friday: 80’s and 90’s Bash hosted by Davon Hamilton Events and the Green Lantern (1335 Green Ct., N.W.) at 10 p.m. This underwear dance party features music by DJ Honey, GoGo dancers and more. The $10 entry includes clothes check. For more information, visit greenlanterndc.com

The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater performs tonight at 7 p.m. at the Kennedy Center (2700 F St., N.W.). Tickets start at $49 for this show which is layered in African-American cultural history. The show runs until Feb. 9. For dates and other details, visit kennedy-center.org

Go Gay D.C. hosts a First Friday Happy Hour Social tonight at 7 p.m. at The Commentary in Westin Arlington Gateway (801 N. Glebe Rd., Arlington, Va.). Everyone is welcome. For more information, visit meetup.com/gogaydc

D.C. Center Womxn, a free monthly peer drop-in group to share, connect and build community among black lesbians, is tonight at 7 p.m. at the D.C. Center (2000 14th St., N.W., Suite 105). For more information, visit thedccenter.org

Saturday, Feb. 8

“More than Friends: The Queer Chesapeak in the 18th, 19th and 20th Centuries,” a presentation by Dr. Christopher Mielke, is today at 10 a.m. at the Historic London Town Visitor Center in Edgewater (839 Londontown Rd., Edgewater, Md.). Visit rainbowhistory.org for more information. 

Night of 100 Elviras is tonight at 7 p.m. at Ottobar (2549 N. Howard St., Baltimore). Halloween comes early to the home of the Ravens as guests are invited to don their little black dresses and big black wigs. The evening features music by cover bands A Date with Elvira and the Universal Donors. Tickets start at $10 on Eventbrite.

Freeballers hosted by DJ Back2back and the Green Lantern (1335 Green Ct., N.W.) is tonight at 10 p.m. Everyone is invited to wear their sweats, athletic shorts, jeans and other comfies to dance the night away. There is no cover and drink specials run all night. For more information, visit greenlanterndc.com

Lights out, Barks out D.C. is tonight at 9 p.m. at The D.C. Eagle (3701 Benning Rd., N.E.). Cover is $5 in advance and $10 at the door. The event is hosted by LOBO D.C., an inclusive group encompassing the spectrum of gender, sexuality, race, age and kink communities. Tickets are available on Eventbrite.

Avalon Saturdays and D.C. Takeover present KINETIC with DJ Dan Slater tonight at 10 p.m. at Soundcheck (1420 K St., N.W.). Tickets are $25 on Eventbrite. This event features an opening set by TWiN and $4 Absolut drinks until midnight. A portion of door proceeds will be donated to The Cherry Fund which provides financial support for nonprofits serving the LGBTQ community. For details, visit soundcheckdc.com

Sunday, Feb. 9

The 24th Annual Iranian Film Fest: An Abbas Kiarostami Retrospective is today at 1:30 p.m. at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Asian Art (1050 Independence Ave., S.W.). This traveling retrospective was organized by Janus Films and is co-presented with AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center and the National Gallery of Art. For more information, visit asia.si.edu

Nonbinary Experiences, a discussion for transmasculine and nonbinary folks assigned female at birth hosted by the D.C.-area Transmasculine Society, is today at 5 p.m. at Whitman-Walker Health (1525 14th St., N.W.). A meeting for partners of nonbinary and transmasculine folks will be held at the same time and location, but in a neighboring room. Visit dcats.org and Facebook events for more information. 

Queer/Trans Fusion Dance: Queer Artist and Anniversary Night is tonight at 6 p.m. at A League of Her Own (2319 18th St., N.W.). QT Fusion Dance celebrates their three-year anniversary with music by queer artists and lessions in Blues and West Coast Swing with queer instructor Jo-Nicole Pollard. Lessons are $10 or free to event volunteers. Visit Facebook events for details.

Monday, Feb. 10

“Gay Like Me” author Richie Jackson will be at Politics and Prose at The Wharf (70 District Square S.W.) tonight at 7 p.m. Jackson’s book about the LGBTQ struggle is framed as a letter to his son who came out to him at 15. This event is free and seating is available on a first come, first served basis. For more information, visit politics-prose.com/wharf

Songs for SMYAL: Broadway Karaoke for a Cause is tonight at 8 p.m. at Mr. Henry’s (601 Pennsylvania Ave., S.E.). Proceeds from this event, hosted by That’s Our Cue, benefit SMYAL which empowers D.C.-area LGBTQ youth. To make a donation, visit that-s-our-cue.secured.atpay.com

Tuesday, Feb. 11

Beyond Gatsby: The Fabled Gardens of Long Island’s Gold Coast is today at 5:30 p.m. at the Hillwood Museum (4155 Linnean Ave., N.W.). Landscape architect CeCe Hadock delves into the history and landscape design of a spot that was once a favorite retreat of the rich and famous. For more information, visit hillwoodmuseum.org

Valentine Drag Bingo is tonight at 7 p.m. at Red Bear Brewing (209 M St., N.E.). Desiree Dik hosts an evening of holiday drag entertainment and free bingo. Scheduled are four games in two hours with prizes each round and a drag performance. Visit Facebook Events and redbear.beer for more information.

Wednesday, Feb. 12

The Fallout Shelter Tour is today at 2:30 and 3:15 p.m. at Hillwood Museum (4155 Linnean Ave., N.W.). Built in the 1960s, Marjorie Post’s fallout shelters are on display for a public tour. For more information, visit hillwoodmuseum.org

The D.C. Boys of Leather February Happy Hour is tonight at 6 p.m. at the Green Lantern (1335 Green Ct., N.W.). The D.C. Boys are getting friendly in a casual, low-pressure environment with an opportunity for newbies to meet members in a safe, inclusive and diverse environment. More information is available at greenlanterndc.com.

The Big Gay Book Group meets tonight at 7 p.m. at Trios Bistro (1537 17th St., N.W.) to discuss “The Fourth Courier” by Timothy Jay Smith. A straight, white FBI agent and a gay black CIA officer team up to solve a murder in this 1992 international thriller set in Poland. All are welcome. Email [email protected] to RSVP. 

The Lambda Bridge Club meets tonight at 7:30 p.m. at the Dignity Center (721 8th St., S.E.) for duplicate bridge. No reservations are needed and newcomers are welcome. Phone 202-841-0279 if you need a partner.

Thursday, Feb. 13

Preschool Series: Treasure Quest is today at 10:30 a.m. at the Hillwood Museum (4155 Linnean Ave., N.W.). Preschoolers and parents are invited to explore a new mansion room each week and discover hidden gems and treasures that glitter and sparkle. For more information, visit hillwoodmuseum.org

Single Tingle: A Singles Happy Hour for LGBTQ Womxn hosted by LezLink Social Club is tonight at 6 p.m. at A League of Her Own (2319 18th St., N.W.). This event is a happy hour space dedicated to local LGBTQ womxn looking to mix and mingle. Visit Facebook events for free tickets and more information.

Migrant Justice Movie Night: United in Anger is tonight at 7 p.m. and is hosted by the Metro D.C. Democratic Socialists of America (2309 18th St., N.W.). The film is a history of activism during the height of the AIDS epidemic and was made by the people on the front lines. For more information, visit mdcdsa.org

D.C. Lambda Squares holds its club night tonight (and every Thursday) at 7:30 p.m. at National City Christian Church (5 Thomas Circle). Details at dclambdasquares.org

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Out & About

Must-attend events in D.C. this fall

Mix of in-person and virtual exhibits, brunches, and more

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fall LGBT virtual events, Washington Blade
SMYAL Executive Director Sultan Shakir addresses the crowd at the 2018 Fall Brunch. (Blade photo by Michael Key)

Last year, the pandemic forced many event planners to cancel their projects or move everything entirely online. However, this year, with the number of vaccinated people increasing and the mask mandate in place, events are slowly returning to the in-person format. Check out the list below for a good mix of both in-person and virtual events to watch out for this fall:

Smithsonian Associates will be hosting “Palestinian Embroidery 101: The Tatreez Sampler Series” on Friday, Sept. 17 at 2 p.m. This online event teaches the art of Palestinian embroidery including the basic Palestinian cross-stitch and how to create a tatreez sampler, using Aida cloth fabric. The class will be taught by Wafa Ghnaim who began her training in embroidery with her mother at age 2. Visit the Smithsonian’s website for more information.

Join Capital Pride Alliance virtually to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” on Monday, Sept. 20 at 7 p.m. This event will focus on “[supporting] the continuous fight for full inclusion for transgender and intersex servicemembers.” Keynote speakers include former Rep. Patrick J. Murphy, and Jennifer Dane, Air Force veteran and Executive Director of the Modern Military Association of America. Guests will get to hear extraordinary stories from service members of all branches and learn more about the fight for the codification of transgender military service and the effort to lift the ban on service for intersex individuals and folks living with HIV. For more information, visit Capital Pride Alliance’s website.

The 2021 LGBTQ Intergenerational Symposium will be on Thursday, Sept. 23. This is a free two-day virtual event sponsored by the DC Department of Aging and Community Living, Capitol Hill Village, and the DC Villages and is open to LGBTQ individuals and allies of all ages. There will also be a virtual kickoff for attendees, speakers, and organizations that are involved to get to know each other. Each day will include two health and wellness sessions, one panel, and breakout session.

The Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics will host New Vistas in Astronomy: Imaging a Black Hole on Thursday, Sept. 30 at 7 p.m. This event will celebrate the 51st year of the New Vistas in Astronomy lecture series at Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory (FLWO). There will be speakers from across the many scientific divisions of the Center for Astrophysics Harvard & Smithsonian led by founding director of the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) Shep Doeleman. 

DC Front Runners will host its 40th anniversary party on Saturday, Sept. 25 at Jack Rose Dining Saloon at 3 p.m. This event will be held outside on the large roof deck. Tickets for this event are $35 and cover two drinks, passed appetizers and hors d’oeuvres. You are welcome to open a tab at the bar after your drink tickets have been used. Drink tickets for paid attendees will be available starting mid-September at the runs, and also available day of the event by contacting Josh Yankovic. More information about this event is available on DC Front Runners’ website.

All Things Go and the Capital Pride Alliance are joining forces to launch “Club Pride”, a third stage and dance party at the All Things Go Music Festival on Saturday, Oct. 16. This all-day event will feature special intimate artist performances, DJ sets, special guests and more throughout the day. Access to Club Pride is included with all festival tickets. Club Pride is located at Merriweather Post Pavilion’s 9:32 Stage. For more information, visit Capital Pride Alliance’s website.

Capital Pride Alliance will host the first ever “Colorful Fest” that will include a block party and street fair on Sunday, Oct. 17. The Street Fair will feature small independent businesses, community groups, artisans, and food along 15th Street. The Block Party will include entertainment, an As You Are Bar pop-up, and dancing throughout the day for guests 21 and over. For more details, visit Capital Pride Alliance’s website.

Smithsonian Associates presents “The Philosophical Thought of Thomas Aquinas” on Thursday, Sept. 23 at 6:30 p.m. This event will be hosted online and Aquinas scholar Gregory T. Doolan will explore Aquinas’s philosophical thought. Thomas Aquinas’s work presents one of Western civilization’s most comprehensive philosophical systems. Although a theologian by profession, this man of faith dedicated much of his vast writings to discerning what the human mind can learn independently of faith. For more information, visit the Smithsonian’s website. 

“SMYAL’s Annual Fall Brunch” will be on Saturday, Nov. 6 at 10:30 a.m. at the Marriott Marquis. This event ​​includes a cocktail reception featuring a silent auction, three-course brunch, and a chance to hear from some of the LGBTQ community’s most inspiring leaders. This event will bring together LGBTQ individuals and allies, friends, and families in support of the inspirational youth SMYAL works with every day. For more information, visit SMYAL’s website.

DC Area Transmasculine Society (DCATS) will host “Transmasculine and Nonbinary Social Hour on Tuesday, Sept. 21 at 6 p.m. at Red Bear Brewing Company. At this social hour, DCATS will be accepting binder donations and will also give out needles to those who are in need. All partners and friends are required to be accompanied by a transmasculine individual. The event is reservation-only, and you can RSVP online on Eventbrite. 

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Arts & Entertainment

Lil Nas X heads up new role at Taco Bell

The 22-year-old musical artist, now riding the success of two global No. 1 hits was an hourly wage earner as part of a Taco Bell team in 2017

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Lil Nas X (Screenshot courtesy of Taco Bell)

The iconic American fast-food chain serving Mexican-inspired fare such as tacos, quesadillas and nachos has a new pitchman, former Taco Bell employee and now Grammy award winning rapper & singer-songwriter Lil Nas X, (real name Montero Lamar Hill).

In an announcement Monday, Mark King, CEO of Taco Bell commented that “Lil Nas X knows the job, the experience and the culture Taco Bell creates for its fans – including its people,” King added; ““This unique partnership will deliver on more than just marketing, allowing us to tap into the genius of Lil Nas X to inspire our team members and align with our commitment to unlocking opportunities for young people.”

As a cultural icon with an insider’s perspective on the Taco Bell team member experience, Lil Nas X has been appointed the title of ‘Chief Impact Officer,’ a newly created role that will allow him to collaborate on the brand experience from the inside out.

The 22-year-old musical artist, who catapulted to fame and now is riding the success of two global No. 1 hits in “Old Town Road” and “Montero (Call Me By Your Name),” was an hourly wage earner as part of the Taco Bell team at an Atlanta-area restaurant in 2017.

Two years later as a successful up and coming musical artist, on June 30, 2019, the last day of Pride Month, he came out publicly as gay tweeting: “some of y’all already know, some of y’all don’t care, some of y’all not gone fwm no more. but before this month ends i want y’all to listen closely to c7osure. 🌈🤩✨”

(Courtesy of Taco Bell)

In today’s announcement the company acknowledged his ascendency to artistic celebrity as well as his sexual orientation.

Back in 2017, Lil Nas X laid down roots working at an Atlanta-area Taco Bell as a team member and less than five years later he’s ascended to stardom by defying conventions, charting his own course and remaining authentically true to himself – all things that Taco Bell stands for in its own way.”

As part of his new role, Lil Nas X will support the Taco Bell Foundation’s mission and help announce awards to recipients of the Live Más scholarship to enable them to pursue their creative passions. The Taco Bell Foundation breaks down barriers to educate and inspire the next generation of America’s leaders.

Since 1992, the Taco Bell Foundation has reached more than 4 million young people across the country and has awarded more than $110 million in Live Más Scholarships and grants to youth-serving nonprofit organizations focused on education and career readiness.

The artist’s “expertise in understanding social media and youth culture alongside his skills in creating great music makes this partnership with Taco Bell exciting, brave and one of the most innovative campaigns I’ve had the pleasure of creating,” said Jennifer Frommer, senior vp brand partnerships & commercial sync at Columbia Records.

As one of his first initiatives, Lil Nas X will make a cameo in Taco Bell’s breakfast campaign, which kicks off today, as the brand brings its breakfast offerings back to approximately 90% of restaurants nationwide by mid-September.

According to music industry trade magazine Billboard, in June, the rapper revealed his highly anticipated first full-length album would be “coming soon,” though a release date has not been announced.

Lil Nas X x Taco Bell:

From the press release:

As a brand known for its late night Fourth Meal, Taco Bell is celebrating fans who begin craving and planning for their morning meal in the evening to remind them that Taco Bell breakfast awaits come morning.

Breakfast, In Bedtime Stories – Toasted Breakfast Burritos (Commercial) |Taco Bell:

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Music & Concerts

Erasure’s ‘Neon Tour’ coming to The Anthem

Features out lead Andy Bell

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Erasure (Photo courtesy of The Anthem)

Erasure will play The Anthem on Thursday, Feb. 3 at 8 p.m. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. The band features lead singer Andy Bell who is openly LGBTQ and HIV positive.

Tickets cost between $69.50 and $89.50. Super Excellent Seats are non-transferable. The ID of the original purchaser must be presented to pick up the tickets, and also, Super Excellent Seats will be made available for will call pick up no earlier than 30 minutes prior to doors. 

For more information, visit The Anthem’s website.

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