Iowa City Pride, Chicago Pride Fest, Metro East Pride kick off new Pride wave under COVID’s shadow

Namoli Brennet at Decorah Pride, Two Bit Maniac and Robin S at Iowa City Pride, HoneyVox at Metro East Pride and Debbie Gibson at Chicago Pride Fest.

Iowa City Pride, Chicago Pride Fest and Metro East Pride are happening this weekend. Decorah Pride is coming Oct. 8-9, then Pride Orange City Oct. 15-17. The Fox Valley area holds a Pride Halloween party Oct. 23. And southeastern Illinois joins its neighbors for the 19th Annual Pride Prom Oct. 30.

Namoli Brennet at Decorah Pride, Two Bit Maniac and Robin S at Iowa City Pride, HoneyVox at Metro East Pride and Debbie Gibson at Chicago Pride Fest. Read More

A cozy, cool Saturday afternoon at The Blazing Saddle in Des Moines

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WHAT: Saturday Afternoon Bingo WHERE: The Blazing Saddle, 416 E. 5th St., Des Moines WHO: A packed house featuring a crowd of attendees playing bingo, watching TV, or hanging out. The weekly bingo events raise money for charity. WHEN: June 26, 2021 WHAT ELSE IS COMING UP THERE: Bingo today (starting 2 p.m.) and every Saturday; Gear Night for Iowa Leather Weekend tonight; The Graveyard drag show Sunday. (This photo gallery is part of Long Live Community, an ongoing showcase of community gatherings and events at LGBTQ-affirming, intersectional and progressive…

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“Letter to Lori:” transgender man reaches back in time to former self

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Dear Lori, I know things are rough right now. I know that every day carries such an overwhelming feeling of dread and confusion. I know you’re afraid to go to school, that you feel sick every morning and think it’s hopeless, like it’s never going to stop hurting. I know it seems like the taunts will never stop, the things other students, even teachers, say to you. Things like “Amazon,” dyke, freak, linebacker, or lezzie. Like they’ll never stop asking you things like,  “Why can’t you just stop trying to…

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Surviving and thriving: a new family within the Leather family

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I have been to quite a few away-from-home events over the last couple of years and often have seen my Leather family posting about their “event drop.” But I’ve never really experienced it. I thought maybe I was broken, or maybe didn’t have my heart in it. Maybe that was why I was completely fine upon returning home from most events, ready to go with house duties, mom duties, work, and “let’s get it done.” This time is different, so very different. This time, I was helping kick off a…

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LGBTQ pride in one of the ‘Trumpiest’ counties in Iowa

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WHAT: Humboldt Diversity & Inclusion Pride Celebration WHERE: The VFW Hall in Dakota City, Ia., pop. 843, town seat of Humboldt County, pop, 4,753, and a county that voted 73 percent in favor of Donald Trump in the 2020 Presidential Election WHO: About 200 residents, mostly allies plus a handful of LGBTQ people. Coordinated by Mark Henderson, John Grause, and Humboldt County Pride and LGBTQ Awareness. WHEN: June 25, 2021 PHOTOS BY: TRM Team

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REMINISCENCE: An I.C. Kings Photo Gallery, courtesy of Hugh Jindapants

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Amanda Green (aka Hugh Jindapants) helped co-found the I.C. Kings of Iowa City 10 years ago. Here, their decade of performing as Jindapants — a crass, showy, sneering display of toxic masculinity — is captured along with several highlight group shots of the I.C. Kings. Enjoy this stroll through the memories — then check out Green’s tribute to the groundbreaking drag king troupe, where they reminisced, shared some joy and pain, and encouraged fellow drag performers to use their voice to support social justice in the way their character and…

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Happy headspace, with or without a handler, is the heart of human pet play

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I have a pet. A Pup. His name is Pup Who, and I adore him. I’m not talking about a normal pet, like you might have. Though I also own the kinds of pets YOU might own (cats and dogs), I’m talking here about the pets in my kink and Leather world. I’m talking about human pets. Like your pets, they are beautiful, loving creatures. They want to play, to be stroked, to cuddle, to be mischievous, to be kept safe. They are loyal and often full of service for…

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