Project of the Quad Cities rolls out June full of events

MOLINE — The Project of the Quad Cities, which serves 40 counties throughout Iowa and Illinois, has announced a packed June with four events — and two of those have early-bird registration deadlines coming in April or May. Most of the events are free, and for those with registration, proceeds go to fund TPQC’s work in providing LGBTQ health care, AIDS/HIV testing and prevention, STD testing and prevention and harm reduction services. Here’s a rundown of all the fun and community planned:

  • June 1: Opening Reception for “Your Village Pride Collection 2022” in collaboration with St. Ambrose University. Artwork of all kinds from high school and college students will be on display at St. Ambrose University from June 1 to July 15. To be considered, submit your artwork at this link by May 1; artists to be featured will be chosen by May 9. Artists will receive awards for Awards given for Best in Show, 1st, 2nd and People’s Choice.
  • June 12: TPQC hosts its first-ever run/walk/roll. Deadline for discounted early bird registration of $15 to $30 is April 24; regular registration through June 12 is $25 to $40; click here to learn more.
  • June 18: Pride at Bass Street Landing returns. This event started last year at this popular downtown Moline spot, featuring drag, vendors, live music and more. Admission is free.
  • June 25: The Red Ribbon Gala, TPQC’s biggest annual event, returns with a theme of “A Village For Tomorrow.” This black-tie event features a live band and multi-course meal along with cocktails, and presentation of the annual Louis Katz Award for above and beyond service to prevent HIV and AIDS. Early-bird tickets are available for this big event through March 31 for $70; full tables are also available for $650. You can find more information about the Red Ribbon Gala, and TPQC, here.
Call for art from Quad Cities high school and college students
You can enroll by May 1 at qrco.de/villageart for this show happening June 1 through July 15 at Davenport’s St. Ambrose University, in collaboration with Moline’s The Project of the Quad Cities.

In addition, The Project participates in all the other Pride events happening throughout the Quad Cities in June, and September. To learn more about becoming a sponsor, volunteer, attendee or registrant for any of TPQC’s June events, contact Tyler Mitchell at [email protected], or see The Project’s website or Facebook page.

Quad Cities Pride Festivals, Iconic hold all ages drag show April 2

ROCK ISLAND — Come out for an all-ages drag show, and help raise money for Quad Cities Pride Festivals, at The Iconic Event Venue April 2. This show will feature current and former drag “royalty” kings and queens from the Quad Cities area, including Dizmuh Stratton, Frank Lee Overit, Sinclaire Snaps, Lucas Blewz and Ginger Snaps. The event is at 1725 2nd Ave., and admission is $5, or $3 for children 12 and under. For more information email [email protected]

iconic and quad cities pride festivals april 2
This event, suitable for all ages, helps raise money for Quad Cities Pride Festival, taking place June 4 at Schwiebert Park in Rock Island for the first time ever.

Joliet taxpayers foot $93,000 bill for mayor’s settlement in BLM case

JOLIET — A $93,000 settlement agreement has been reached between Joliet’s mayor and two men, following a clash involving the three at a Black Lives Matter rally in late May 2020, reports The Patch. The online publication reports that the settlement agreement covers both Joliet Mayor Robert O’Dekirk and the Joliet Police Department, and comes from taxpayer funds. O’Dekirk is alleged to have shoved the two men into a crowd of police officers, triggering a “pile-on” by the officers that led to the men’s hospitalization, reports The Patch.

Transgender rally, Night of Noise, and Pride in the park for Carbondale

CARBONDALEThe Rainbow Cafe has a month of visibility coming., with a string of events starting March 31 and continuing through April 24. In addition, this Carbondale-based LGBTQ community center is also starting to hold satellite gatherings, with its first in Anna-Jonesboro High School about a half-hour south of Carbondale. Anna-Jonesboro is where a flyer was circulated in October that included homophobic slurs, and Rainbow Cafe begins holding a monthly support and social group for teens on April 5. For all of Rainbow Cafe’s big events coming March and April, read on:

  • March 31: Transgender Day of Visibility Rally at the Carbondale Pavilion
  • April 22: Night of Noise for young people, at the Carbondale pavilion, featuring karaoke, live music and more.
  • April 24: Picnic in the Park Pride edition. An outdoor celebration at Attucks Park featuring games, drag, food and more.
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The Rainbow Cafe LGBTQ Center joins with Southern Illinois University to recognize the Transgender Day of Visibility March 31.

Full-fledged Pride festival returns to Springfield May 21

SPRINGFIELD – Illinois’ state capital is holding its first full-fledged Pride festival in two years on May 21. Springfield Pride Fest has been known to attract up to 20,000 people for its big event in downtown Springfield. The event is coordinated annually by the Phoenix Center, an LGBTQ community center in downtown Springfield. This year’s event also helps celebrate Out on Adams, a new retail and resource center for the Phoenix Center. Organizers are seeking sponsors, food vendors, and volunteers; early bird rates are available through April 15. For more information, go to phoenixcenterspringfield.org, or contact Jonna Cooley at [email protected] or 217-528-5253.

Springfield Pridefest
Vendors can register for Springfield PrideFest, happening May 21, for the early-bird fee through April 15.

Illinois House approves workplace protections for cannabis users

ILLINOIS — In Illinois’ ongoing legislative changes to adapt to being a “fully legal” state, the House passed a bill that would ban employers from firing employees because of cannabis use. The bill makes exceptions for trades that involve operating machinery and other public safety accommodations, reports Marijuana Moment. Illinois became the first state in the country to legalize cannabis through legislation rather than a voter initiative in 2019; bill sponsor State Rep. Bob Morgan (D-Highwood) described the iegislation as giving people chances to “make good choices” and enjoy individual liberties outside of the workplace. The bIll now heads to the Illinois Senate for consideration.

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