GayCalgary® Magazine [copy]

Wild Gay West

Letter from the Publisher

Publisher's Column by Rob Diaz-Marino (From GayCalgary® Magazine, August 2005, page 5)
This year we came to the realization that you haven’t fully experienced the ARGRA weekend until you’ve camped out. Last year we popped up to Symon’s Valley Ranch for some of the main events (thanks to More Better Buses who were shuttling people back and forth), but this year we got a great deal on renting an RV. So, we proudly sported our GayCalgary banner on the front of our vehicle, even though we were only able to get a campsite in overflow. Needless to say, Steve and I don’t get out much, so the weekend was a pleasant change of pace – a chance to get to know new people and spend time hanging out with friends. Don’t get me wrong, we still had work to do taking photos and manning our booth, as well as other general public relations. Man did it rain though! At one point we literally had a river running through the merchant tent. I shudder to think what the competitors and spectators must have gone through! But, in the end it all panned out – the sun came out, things dried, and everyone was happy. Except for one poor guy to whom, I started giving a back massage later that evening, not knowing he’d injured his shoulder…ouch, SORRY!!

Our July issue certainly went like hotcakes with ARGRA and the Calgary Stampede. It was the MCC Conference that caught us off guard though. Imagine our surprise when out of nowhere they request magazines to supply to the 1000+ people that were expected to be attending the conference. To meet their quota, we needed to tuck into some of our back issues; otherwise we wouldn’t have had enough July issues to tide us over to the end of the month!

We had a phenomenal time at the Calgary Stampede this year. For Steve and I, it was our first time attending a Grand Stand show. Though we weren’t lucky enough to find room in the rush seating area, we were able to get a spot up at the front, leaning on the corral fence. The show was exceptional, and coupled with the fireworks, it totally blew us away. Plus, we didn’t know A-Channel’s Dave Kelly could sing so well! The four hours we spent on our feet were certainly worth it…we’re just sad we didn’t make it on the ‘cuddle cam!’ Well, there’s always next year.

Now we’re onto August which is usually a slow month for Calgary in general, since a lot of people are out of town. We found it mildly surprising that the necessity arose for us to expand to 64 pages this issue. Oh well, call us ‘pain pigs’, but we’ve got to roll with the punches.

In the News

Are you sick of reading about gay marriage yet? It’s certainly a topic that’s getting hammered to death in the media these days – though that’s a good thing because there are still a lot of thick skulls out there that need it.

As we already mentioned, the Metropolitan Community Church (MCC) had a HUGE conference in Calgary this month where they performed a whole slough of marriages for gay couples from the US. You’re probably thinking “of all places in Canada, why would they choose Calgary?” The whole ‘red-neck factor’ doesn’t exactly make our city seem like the most welcoming, but in actual fact they told us that they chose Calgary specifically for that reason. They knew they could make the most impact in Canada’s most reputably conservative city. Check out the Letter to the Editor that MCC Media Coordinator Ian Taylor wrote to us on page 38 – from the way it looks, Calgary’s not that bad after all.

Highlights this Month

“The Queens are Back” at Detour! They’ve brought back their drag shows every Sunday at 11pm and 12:30am. In addition they’ve re-introduced their popular “Girlz Night” event on the first Friday of every month.

Twisted Element launched their version of the Newly Wed Game every Wednesday – coincidentally it started the day after the gay marriage laws were officially passed. The game is geared toward gay, lesbian, and even straight couples, however close friends are also welcome to participate…and trust me, with some of those questions, you’d better be close!

There’s a ton of stuff happening at the bars this upcoming September long weekend! For more information take a look at Detour’s ad on page 47, Metro the Club’s ads on page 20 and 37, and Twisted Element’s ads on page 11 and 63. You know that we have to try and be at them all right? (Sigh…)

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