Come OUT, come OUT, wherever you are

Talk About It! - National Coming Out Day Oct. 11

Compiled by Dawn Wolfe Gutterman

Have you always wanted to come out, but didn't want to take that step alone? Never fear - on Tuesday, Oct. 11, LGBTs will be coming out all over on National Coming Out Day. The theme for this year's NCOD is "Talk About It."

Being out to family, friends and co-workers is one of the most important steps LGBT individuals can take to dispel the myths that lead to discrimination. Several Michigan organizations have planned events to help make that step even easier and more visible, helping LGBTs "Talk About It."

The following is a sampling of Michigan events in observance of National Coming Out Day. For more information about NCOD follow the Coming Out link on the Human Rights Campaign's Web site at http://www.hrc.org. For more information about NCOD activities in Michigan visit Between The Lines' calendar at http://www.pridesource.com or call your local LGBT community center.

Affirmations Lesbian and Gay Community Center will host the 4th Annual Speak OUT on Oct. 11 in collaboration with HRC. Events will include publicly-told coming out stories, music by One Voice Chorus, Agape & Stephanie Loveless, information from TransGender Michigan, HRC and the Horizons Project, and refreshments on the Troy Street Patio at Affirmations from 5:30-7:30 p.m. For more information call 248-398-7105.

Triangle Foundation Community Lobby Day Oct. 11. From 9:30-11 a.m. participants will sign in and there will be introductions and a crash course lobby training. Then folks are set free to lobby. Please make an appointment with your legislator first. Find your legislator with your zip code at http://www.tri.org. Training location: Room 424 of the Capitol Building in Lansing. Maps and Directions at: http://www.michigan.gov/documents/gethere_14067_7.PDF

Apotheke, a shop specializing in bath products, herbs, books, and other specialty items, will donate 10 percent of its sales on National Coming Out Day, Oct. 11, to the Washtenaw Rainbow Action Coalition. Apotheke is located at 50 E. Cross Street in Ypsilanti. For more information call 734-484-3489 or visit http://www.shopapothekeonline.org.

Affirmations will hold their annual Come OUT & Laugh event featuring Kate Clinton at Mark Ridley's Comedy Castle in Royal Oak on Oct. 19. Showtime is 8 p.m. with tickets starting at $25. For tickets visit http://www.GoAffirmations.org or call 248-398-7105.

Eastern Michigan University's OutWeek has a full schedule of events. For more information see p. 20 of this issue.

The Kalamazoo Gay/Lesbian Resource Center will continue its Coming Out Proud Film Festival on Oct. 6 with "No Secret Anymore: The Times of Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon," "My Summer of Love," and "Dorian Blues" on Oct. 7, and "Producing Adults" and "Adam & Steve" on Oct. 8. For more information call 269-349-4234 or email kglrcnews@aol.com.

Western Michigan University's OUTSpoken group has a series of events planned from Oct. 11-15 including a poetry and music night, NCOD demonstration, movie night and a trip to Diversions in Grand Rapids. For more info visit http://www.rso.wmich.edu/outspoken.

Michigan State University's Alliance of LBGT Students will host several events, beginning with a photo exhibit by queer photographer and MSU alum Nip Dendron from Oct. 4-18. The exhibit will be held at the Barista Cafe in Case Hall. Hours are Monday - Friday 7:30 a.m. - 11:30 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 3:30-11:30 p.m. The Alliance will also sponsor a performance of "Moral Obligations," a play by Todd Heywood presented by Sunsets with Shakespeare on Friday, Oct. 7 at 7 p.m. by Beaumont Tower or at 128 Natural Science in the event of rain, with a discussion following the performance.

Additional events include participating in MSU's Sesquicentennial Parade Oct. 8, the " Fruit Bowl," a queer sporting event on Oct. 8, a Bar-B-Que on Oct. 9, tabling by the Stonewall Democrats and a Two-Spirit discussion on Oct. 10, a workshop by Colin Kennedy Donovan on Oct. 11, and other events through Oct. 15. LGBT allies can get involved on Oct. 16 during the Alliance's LGBT Ally "Safe Zone" training from 2-5 p.m. in Room 13 of the Student Services Building. For more information visit the Alliance's website at http://www.msu.edu/~alliance/upcoming or contact Patrick Collora at 517-353-9520 or lbgtc@msu.edu.

The University of Michigan/Ann Arbor's Office of LGBT Affairs will host performer, author, and editor Anna Camilleri in a one-woman, multi-media performance on Oct. 11 at 8 p.m. Camilleri is the author of "I Am a Red Dress: Incantations on a Grandmother, a Mother and a Daughter" (Arsenal Pulp Press, 2004), editor of "Red Light: Superheroes, Saints and Sluts" (Arsenal Pulp Press, 2005), co-author of "Boys Like Her: Transfictions" (Press Gang Publishers, 1998), and co-editor of "Brazen Femme: Queering Femininity" (Arsenal Pulp Press, 2002). The Camilleri performance will be held in the Henderson Room of the Michigan League. For more information about the event contact Jennifer Almquist at 734-763-4186 or almquisj@umich.edu.

The UofM LGBT Affairs Office is also beginning a weekly coming-out support group on Oct. 12. The group will meet on Wednesdays from 5:30-7:30 pm. This eight-week group will help participants explore a variety of coming-out issues. Before joining, all participants must arrange to have a brief pre-screening meeting with Kevin Correa. To set up a meeting, contact Kevin at kcorrea@umich.edu or 734-763-4186.

Wayne State University will host National Coming Out Day activities for students, providing information and resources from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the student center on Oct. 11. Events will include the kick-off for the GLBT Student Union's Take Action campaign to get an LGBT Resource Center at Wayne State and free HIV and syphillis testing by the Detroit Health Department. WSU LGBT-inclusive student groups will each have a space to pass out flyers and answer questions about their organizations. Affirmations staff will be present at this event as well. For more information contact the Wayne State GLBT Student Union at gaywayneinfo@yahoo.com.

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