Astoria Fete For Qns. LGBT Group
The Queens Lesbian and Gay Pride Committee will celebrate its 20th winter pride event this Saturday, Jan. 26 at Astoria World Manor in Astoria.
The event supports the Queens Pride Parade and Multicultural Festival and provides a venue to honor those who significantly contribute to the causes and concerns of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ) Community in Queens.
This year more than 350 people, including numerous elected officials, will gather to honor Rep. Grace Meng, Dr. Marjorie Hill and Gay Men’s Health Crisis, and Out Astoria.
According to organizers, these individuals and groups reflect the diverse agenda for advancing the legislative, health, and social issues of the LGBTQ community.
Meng is serving her first term in the U.S. House of Representatives, representing the Sixth District. She is the first Asian-American member of Congress from New York and the first female member of Congress from Queens since former Vice Presidential nominee Geraldine Ferraro.
Prior to serving in Congress, she was a member of the New York State Assembly. While in the Assembly, Meng was known as a bridge builder and a fighter for equality.
“Throughout her political career, Congresswoman Meng has supported the many causes of the LGBTQ community. We look forward to her continued advocacy on a national level” said Queens Pride Co-Chair Hank Krumholz.
Hill is a health professional and public policy advocate, and she serves as the chief executive officer of Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC). GMHC is the world’s first and leading provider of HIV/AIDS prevention, care, and advocacy. Building on decades of dedication and expertise, GHMC understands the reality of HIV/AIDS and works to empower a healthy life for all.
“It is important to remain vigilant about the HIV/AIDS crisis both in terms of the progress we have made and for the spirit of the many we have lost,” added Andrew Ronan, the organizer of Winter Pride.
The GMHC organization offers counseling, health care, educational, and other support programs to patients, family, and friends of HIV/AIDS and works vehemently to end the HIV/AIDS crisis. Their annual AIDS Walk in Central Park is the city’s largest fund-raising event for the HIV/AIDS support, research, and education. The GMHC continues to pioneer HIV prevention, care and advocacy.
Out Astoria organizes the LGBT community in Astoria and Long Island City, providing its members with a way to get to know each other and support our community. The organization was founded in 2006 and began as an informal dinner group for LGBT locals. It has since expanded into one of the largest LGBT organizations in Queens.
“Out Astoria represents the important grassroots efforts of individuals to connect our community,” says Chris Calvert, co-chair of Queens Pride. “Through their organizing efforts, the LGBTQ community of Astoria is active, strong, and probably the fastest growing of anywhere in New York City.”
Out Astoria identifies LGBTowned and LGBT-friendly businesses in our neighborhoods and forges partnerships with their owners to plan events for the gay and lesbian community. Out Astoria also provides a vehicle for the gay and lesbian community to connect with others to improve our neighborhoods for all residents.
“Twenty years of Winter Pride celebrations in Queens has helped to build a strong lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) movement in the borough,” said City Council Member Daniel Dromm, who founded the organization in 1992. “When I first started this celebration, only one or two elected officials attended. Now it has become the most important “political” non-political event. It is a must-show for every elected official in the city if they are looking for support from the LGBT communities. Winter Pride has helped create a sea change in public opinion about LGBT issues. I congratulate the Queens Lesbian and Gay Pride committee in having another successful event.”
Queens Pride continues its efforts to support and celebrate the LGBTQ community of Queens. The 21st Queens Pride Parade and Multicultural Festival will take place on Sunday, June 2 in Jackson Heights. The group continues its efforts of outreach throughout the year with a film series and social and educational programs.