Friday, Feb. 19
It’s Tabletop Weekend at Red Bear Brewery starting today at 1 p.m. and running until Sunday at 10 p.m. Pods of friends are invited to bring their favorite board games to the taproom and spend two hours enjoying Red Bear food and beverages. Visit redbear.beer and Facebook for more information.
The DC-area Transmasculine Society hosts a virtual Transmasculine and Nonbinary Art Night tonight at 7 p.m. via Zoom. This crafting circle is primarily for those who were assigned female at birth but identify as masculine. However, friends, spouses and allies of any gender are welcome to participate. Visit dcats.org or this event’s Facebook page for free tickets and information.
Saturday, Feb. 20
“Art & Me: Lunar New Year” is a free online celebration of the Chinese New Year in a virtual workshop hosted by the Smithsonian American Art and Asian Art museums today at 10 a.m. This family-friendly event is a hands-on workshop for children ages 3-8 and their families. Visit si.edu for more information.
Sunday, Feb. 21
The African Ancestral Lesbians United for Societal Change hosts a virtual panel discussion on starting a business today at 2 p.m. via Zoom. This free Black History Month discussion is also a business fair and networking event highlighting Black LGBTQ entrepreneurs and focusing on women of color. For tickets and information, visit Eventbrite.
Monday, Feb. 22
A virtual Transmasculine and Nonbinary Chat, Chill and Game hosted by the D.C.-area Transmasculine Society is tonight at 5 p.m. Allies of any gender are also welcome to hang out, chat and game solo or with others. For more information on how to join this Discord event, visit dcats.org/discord and the Facebook event page.
Wednesday, Feb. 24
A virtual social hour for those identifying as transmasculine and nonbinary is tonight at 8 p.m. This free event is facilitated by the D.C.-area Transmasculine Society and is for those who were assigned female at birth but identify as masculine to make new friends and social connections even during the pandemic. Participants do not have to live in the D.C. area to attend. Visit dcats.org for more information.
Thursday, Feb. 25
The Queer Book Club meets tonight at 7 p.m. via Skype. The group meets monthly on the last Thursday to discuss queer books by queer authors. For more information, email [email protected].
Studio House, Visual AIDS partner for educational program
Day With(out) Art 2021 to be held at Lamont Plaza
Studio House and Visual AIDS will join forces for “Day With(out) Art 2021” on Tuesday, Nov. 30 at 6 p.m. at Lamont Plaza.
This event is a community outdoor screening of “Enduring Care,” a video program that highlights strategies of community care within the ongoing HIV epidemic followed by a discussion about the video.
There will be an open house in the neighborhood at the David Bethuel Jamieson (1963-1992) Studio House and Archives featuring newly commissioned work by Katherine Cheairs, Cristóbal Guerra, Danny Kilbride, Abdul-Aliy A. Muhammad and Uriah Bussey, Beto Pérez, Steed Taylor, and J Triangular and the Women’s Video Support Project.
For more information, visit Eventbrite.
Forget Santa Claus – Ginger Minj is comin’ to town
‘Drag Race’ alum’s Winter Wonderland Tour stops in D.C. Nov. 29 and 30
Ginger Minj is a busy little elf.
From her new country album “Double Wide Diva” to sporadic stints in TV and movies to her upcoming book, “Southern Fried Sass” (which reportedly scored her a six-figure deal), the “Drag Race” diva is everywhere these days, including a venue near you. On Nov. 29 and 30, the new queen of Christmas will perform her holiday spectacular Winter Wonderland Tour at Miracle Theatre.
We recently caught up with the multitalented actress/comedian/singer to discuss her continued success, including making friends with Jennifer Aniston while filming Netflix’s “Dumplin,’” her take on the latest Dave Chappelle backlash, the best Christmas gift she’s ever received, and what exactly makes her the “nicest bitch” this side of the North Pole – but first, let’s take a sleigh ride back to the beginning.
BLADE: Tell me a bit about how you got started in drag and the genesis of Ginger Minj.
GINGER MINJ: Like most good show-tune-loving queers, I stumbled into drag through musical theater. I auditioned for a show that required either full-frontal nudity or drag, and I figured I would fare better in a wig and heels than nothing at all. I got the role and really took to it quickly. I felt more free and honest as a performer than I ever had before, and I realized I could make a livable income doing something that I was wholly responsible for creating.
BLADE: How has your appearance on “Drag Race” helped your career, and what are your top takeaways from your time on the show?
GM: It’s an international platform that allows us to introduce ourselves to the entire world. It got me a seat at the table with people and places that refused to even open the door for me in the past. I think there was – and maybe still is sometimes – this initial assumption that drag artists are limited in their talents, but we have been able to show the world that we are just as talented and capable as any other entertainer. I don’t wear a wig as a gimmick. I wear it as an accessory, and it doesn’t mean I shouldn’t be taken as seriously as any other actor, singer, etc. “Drag Race” is doing a great job of showing the world that – and I’ll forever be grateful.
BLADE: If folks didn’t catch you on “Drag Race,” they might recognize you from the 2018 Netflix movie “Dumplin’” starring Jennifer Aniston and Dove Cameron. What was your experience like on set, and do you have any other TV/film projects in the works?
GM: “Dumplin’” was the single best experience of my life! Jennifer Aniston brought me coffee every morning, and Kathy Najimy had my trailer moved next to hers so we could listen to Beyoncé and play with makeup. That entire cast and crew treated all of us queens with unbelievable respect. It really gave me a passion for filmmaking and, yes, I’m happy to say there are a few more projects – big screen and small – coming your way soon.
BLADE: What makes you the “nicest bitch you’ll ever meet?”
GM: It’s like those good ole’ southern church ladies who will give you the shirts off their backs but read you to filth for not bringing one of your own. The only thing bigger than my mouth is my heart and the “shady” things I say should never be taken seriously.
BLADE: As a comedian yourself, what are your thoughts on the latest Dave Chappelle/Netflix controversy?
GM: I’ve always felt like comedy and drag go hand in hand: It’s an outrageous way to start a conversation and make people confront their own feelings about anything and everything. That being said, I think there’s a way to do that without disparaging and discrediting an entire group of human beings. I think it’s shameful that someone with that great of a platform would choose to punch down.
BLADE: Your new single “Walk Tall” is about growing up gay in the South – and it’s a very good song. Radio worthy even, but a hard sell, given its content, to a country-music audience. How do you think that changes? Will LGBTQ+ country artists ever enjoy the kind of success their straight counterparts do?
GM: I think so. To be completely honest with you, I’ve gotten much more support for that album from the country community than I have from the drag world. The message is so universal, and we were very careful to do it in an authentic, simple way. When we stop focusing on our differences and start embracing our similarities, the world can change. I just do the things that make me happy and hope it finds the people who need to hear it.
BLADE: Christmas is just around the corner – do you prefer giving or receiving? What’s your most prized Christmas present from the past?
GM: I’m definitely a giver! I drive myself crazy for months researching and planning and looking for the perfect gifts for everyone. It’s my way of showing the people I care most about that while I may be busy, I’m listening. I hear them, I see them, and I appreciate them. The best Christmas present I ever got was a cheap plastic pair of ruby slippers from my mama when I was a kid. I still have them. That moment changed my life forever. It’s what actually inspired “Walk Tall.”
BLADE: Like Santa Claus himself, the Ginger Minj Winter Wonderland Tour 2021 is coming to town. What do you have in store for audiences this holiday season?
GM: What don’t we have in store?! There are 20 costume changes, instructional videos gone terribly wrong, singing, dancing, magic tricks, fog machines, comedy, and it even snows over the audience! This is the biggest, prettiest, most ambitious show we have ever put together.
BLADE: Looking forward to 2022, what’s in the works? What are a few of your New Year’s resolutions?
GM: So many great things — more music, some movies, some TV, a stage production of “La Cage aux Folles” in Chicago, and my book “Southern Fried Sass” will hit the shelves. It’s a great time to be the “Glamour Toad,” and I am grateful every single day.
Mikey Rox is an award-winning journalist and LGBT lifestyle expert whose work has been published in more than 100 outlets across the world. Connect with Mikey on Instagram @mikeyroxtravels.
Children’s Beach House to host holiday fundraiser
Music by artists Pamala Stanley and 2nd Time Around
The Children’s Beach House in Lewes, Del., will begin its weekend-long fundraiser with an annual holiday party on Friday, Dec. 3 at 6:30 p.m.
The event will include a live auction, cocktails, dinner by Touch of Italy and music by artists Pamala Stanly and 2nd Time Around. This fundraiser will help support CBH’s work with children and families. Tickets are $150.
The celebrations will continue with a “Santa’s Workshop” event on Saturday, Dec. 4 at 10 a.m. This event will include cookie decorating and making holiday crafts, among other events. There will also be a cash bar available with bloody mary’s and mimosas for those 21 years and older. Tickets cost $30.
CBH will end the weekend with “Happy Hour With the Boy Band Project” on Sunday, Dec. 5 at 4 p.m. This event will be a musical performance by an electric boy band cover group, which was named “Best Group” by the 2019 Broadway World Awards that re-imagines the sound, movement, and energy of NSYNC, Backstreet Boys, One Direction, and more. Tickets are $150. Visit cbhinc.org for more information.
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