Thursday, October 7, 2010

Community get-together

The program at our next meeting of PFLAG-Olympia will be a community get-together. It will be a casual and friendly meeting at which representatives of local GLBT and allied organizations will have a chance to promote their groups and where we can all talk about how to more effectively network.

If you are a representative of a GLBT or allied organization in the Olympia area and have not received an invitation, please contact us at or

The meeting will be at the usual time and place: First United Methodist Church, 1224 Legion Way, SE, Olympia, from 2-4:30 p.m.

There's more information on our website .

Friday, September 17, 2010

Transguys Calendar

New charity project offers hope, support for the Transgender community

A new calendar project to benefit transgender men is currently under way – and they need your help! Born from one person’s desire to help her friend raise money for sexual reassignment surgery, the 2011 Transguys Calendar Project is a labor of love designed to provide financial assistance to transgendered individuals who need help funding sexual reassignment procedures.

The calendar will feature twelve gorgeous female-to-male models at various stages of transition. 100% of the proceeds from calendar sales will be donated to transgender individuals in need of financial assistance for medical costs associated with transitioning.

According to Project Coordinator, Maegan Beard, the goal is to raise at least $10,000 in the first year and to continue the effort annually to help as many people as possible. “Eventually we’d like to be able to expand the project to include an annual Transgirls calendar as well to benefit people transitioning from male to female,” Beard says. “My ultimate goal is to turn this project into a charitable foundation and provide a central resource for people looking for help with funding trans medical costs – everything from hormones to binders and other devices.”

Volunteers are already lining up for the 2012 edition, and in a few short weeks the project has garnered nationwide support from individuals, corporations, celebrities, and LGBT organizations. Calendar pre-orders and donations are currently being accepted through the group’s website, Advertising space on the calendar and website will contribute to printing costs, and sponsorship and volunteer opportunities exist for interested individuals and organizations worldwide.

Maegan Beard
113 Radford Street
Winston-Salem, NC 27106
Ph: (828) 243-5350

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Our PFLAG Candidate Forum on Sept. 12 was exciting. Candidates and some of their supporters pictured here are: Chris Reykdal (State Representative 22nd. District), Debbie Mealy (Sheriff), Steven Drew (County Assessor), Karen Valenzuela (County Commissioner #3), Shawn Myers (Treasurer), Hillary Hunt, representing her dad (Sam Hunt, 22nd District). Thank you to these candidates for taking the time to talk to our LGBTIQQTSA Community! And to the ones who marched with us at the Parade!!! Thanks to Gloria Aton for taking the picture.

Friday, August 20, 2010


for Thurston County High School Support Groups known as Pizza Klatches


This is one of the most fun and relaxed auctions ever.  So, the Pizza Klatch Board has decided to do it again.  The auction raises money to continue the highly successful GLBTQQ  Support Groups at local high schools.

Here’s the great news:  We don’t need tons of money.  We need enough to buy pizzas for the seven weekly groups at four Thurston County high schools and enough to give a stipend to the facilitators.  We’re talking about $7,000.

Here are a variety of ways you can help …

1.      DONATE MONEY (anywhere from $10-$1,000 will help).  Make a check out to “PFLAG Olympia” and in the memo section write “pizza”.  Send it to:  PO Box 12732, Olympia, WA 98508-2732

2.     ATTEND our relaxed and totally fun Auction at Lynn Grotsky and Lisa Brodoff’s house on Hick’s Lake (2419 Carpenter Rd. SE, Lacey), Saturday, September 11 at 2 pm.  Lynn and Lisa will supply appetizers and other food to eat.  Come yourself, and if you can, bring a friend or two. The auction will be both silent and live.. (Please try to RSVP so Lynn and Lisa have an idea of how much food to make.)  Questions? 360 412-1319 or email them at There is no cost to attend the auction. (Consider bringing a dessert with you that we will also auction off.

3.      DONATE ITEMS and/or SERVICES  yourself (see attached pages for ideas and a donation form) and, if possible, get 2 or 3 others to donate too. If possible, please donate in the next few days and email us back the form.  This helps us be more organized! 

4.      Forward this email to others who you think might enjoy the auction or who might like to donate  money or an item to support the high school GLBTQQ support groups.

THANK  YOU! More info and donation forms on the Pizza Klatch website.

Pizza Klatch (High School LGBTQ support groups) is a partner and supported by PFLAG, Stonewall Youth, PiPE, St. Benedict's Episcopal Church and Olympia, Tumwater and North Thurston School Districts. 

Friday, August 6, 2010

The Laramie Project 10 years Later - may we never forget

Last night we went to South Puget Sound Community College to see “The Laramie Project: Ten Years Later.” I went as a critic; my review will appear in The Olympian and The News Tribune next Friday. I also went as a member of PFLAG, because PFLAG is tabling the event. And I went as one might go to the grave of a loved one because “The Laramie Project” is a memorial to Matthew Shepherd and to all victims of anti-GLBTQ hate crimes, and we lost our son to anti-GLBTQ violence in 1995, three years before Matthew’s death. Our son Bill was 17.

On October 6, 1998 Matthew Shepard was beaten and left to die tied to a fence in the outskirts of Laramie, Wyoming. He died six days later. A month after the murder members of Tectonic Theater Project traveled to Laramie and conducted interviews with the people of the town. From these interviews they wrote the play “The Laramie Project.” The “characters” in the play were the actual members of the Tectonic cast talking about their experiences and the citizens of Laramie they interviewed. Every word was taken directly from the transcripts of their interviews.

Ten years later, Mois├ęs Kaufman and members of Tectonic Theater Project returned to Laramie to find out what has happened over the last 10 years, resulting in this new play.

As a critic, I thought the play was too didactic. Kaufman should have edited out much of the lecturing that was done by the Tectonic cast members and the citizens of Laramie. But as a human being living in a world that is still far from safe for people who are not members of the privileged majority – meaning not only gays, lesbians, bi-sexuals and transgenders but also racial and ethnic minorities and those whose religion or culture is different than the so-called norm – I believe the lessons implicit in the production are important and the events depicted should never be forgotten.

It is not my purpose to review the play here. Rather, I want to make a few remarks about the implications of the play. The major questions posed are can Laramie be seen as representative of the whole country – in other words, are they just like us, and have we progressed in our attitude and our laws since Matthew Shepherd’s death. Cast members and the people of Laramie repeatedly bemoaned the fact that after 10 years the federal government had still not passed federal hate crimes legislation that includes GLBTQ persons as a protected class. They pointed out that hate crimes have not lessened but have increased, and like a town full of ostriches a large part of the population of Laramie has embraced a kind of popular cover-up of the crime saying it was a drug-induced robbery gone sour and not a hate crime at all.

Since the play was first presented we have at least made one improvement. Federal hate crime legislation has been enacted into law and signed by President Obama. The bill was named after Matthew Shepherd and James Byrd Jr., a black man who was chained to the back of a pickup truck in Jasper, Texas, and dragged to his death. My wife and I were lucky enough to be on the guest list at the White House for the celebration of the signing of the hate crimes law. While there we talked to Matthew Shepherd’s family, his parents, Judy and Dennis, and his brother, Logan. For them as for us the events of more than a decade ago are as fresh as if they happened yesterday. It was a proud and momentous occasion, but not necessarily a signal of major advances in civil rights. There is hope, however. Just this week a federal judge overturned as unconstitutional the dreaded Proposition 8 in California, which outlawed same sex marriage. But the federal Defense of Marriage Act, which does for the nation what Prop 8 did for California, is still the law of the land; gays still cannot serve openly in the U.S. military; hate crimes have not abated in the least, and every time GLBTQ rights have been put to the vote anywhere in the United States the majority of voters have voted against our rights. We still have a long way to go.

The play included an interview with one of the murderers, Aaron McKinney, who complained that after 10 years Judy Shepherd should just "shut the fuck up." Let us hope Judy Shepherd will never shut up.

- Alec Clayton

Saturday, July 31, 2010

The Laramie Project 10 years Later

Be sure to see "The Laramie Project: Ten Years later" at South Puget Sound Community College.

What is the "Laramie Project?"

A month after the 1998 murder of Matthew Shepard, the members of Tectonic Theater Project traveled to Laramie and conducted interviews with the people of the town. From these interviews they wrote the play The Laramie Project, which has become one of the most performed plays in America in the last decade. The company later made the play into a film for HBO. The play and the movie combined have been seen by more than 50 million people around the world.

Why did they want to return in 2008?

The murder of Matthew Shepard had such seismic impact on this small town in America, that the company wanted to try to observe what, if any, were the long lasting effects of such a crime. How does a town look like 10 years after an episode of this magnitude? Have the attitudes changed? The mythologies? Has change occurred that's concrete and lasting?

For those reasons, the group returned to re-interview past participants, conduct new interviews with Laramie residents and most dramatically, interview Judy Shepard and Aaron McKinney (Matthew Shepard's murderer).

SPSCC Production

The South Puget Sound Community College is doing a student production under the direction of Don Welch. The show runs August 5-7 and August 12-14 at 8:00pm and August 8 and 15 at 2:00pm at the Kenneth J Minnaert Center for the Arts at SPSCC campus. Doors open at 7:00 pm, and PFLAG-Olympia will be tabling at the event before each performance except the Aug. 8 matinee when we'll be having our annual picnic in Priest Point Park.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Picnic update

What are you bringing to the picnic?

Here's what we have so far:

Gloria - cake
Catherine - potato salad
Virgil - condiments, ice soft drinks
Alec & Gabi - corn tortillo casserole
Bill - cheese & crackers, finger foods selection

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Our annual picnic Aug. 8

Yahoo! It's time for our annual picnic. It a pot luck picnic in Priest Point Park kitchen #3 (see our website for a map)from 1-4 p.m. Everybody's invited. Bring friends and family members.

Nobody has to bring food, but if you can, please do. We will not be using the grill, so we ask those who bring food to bring dishes that don't have to be cooked -- casseroles, desserts, snack food. To avoid the possibility of everybody bringing the same thing, we ask that you let us know what you're going to bring and we will post a list on our website of who's bringing what and what we need. That way you can check to see what others are bringing. We'll update the list immediately when we get notices from you.

For starters, we will need covered dish meals of any kind -- pasta, salads, etc. -- desserts, bread or rolls, disposable dishes, silverware, and napkins.

If you have questions or want to let us know what you can bring, email or newsletter and watch this blog and the website for updates.

Note: The picnic takes the place of the regular monthly meeting.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Anyone and Everyone

Please join us at the next meeting of PFLAG-Olympia for a screening of the film "Anyone and Everyone."

"Anyone and Everyone is a moving and beautiful portrayal of the love between parents and children, and the work some parents are willing to do for the sake of that love."
--Bent Lens Cinema

"... a moving documentary of American families' most heart-wrenching and heartwarming moments."
--Keith York, KPBS Director of TV Programming

Connected by having a son or daughter who is gay, parents across the country discuss their experiences in the documentary "Anyone and Everyone." In it, filmmaker Susan Polis Schutz, depicts families from all walks of life. Individuals from such diverse backgrounds as Japanese, Bolivian, and Cherokee, as well as from various religious denominations such as Mormon, Jewish, Roman Catholic, Hindu, and Southern Baptist, share intimate accounts of how their children revealed their sexual orientation and discuss their responses.

The parents also talk about struggling with the pain of their sons and daughters dealing with not being accepted by relatives or friends, and being ostracized by religious congregations.

PFLAG-Olympia meets every 2nd Sunday at First United Methodist Church in Olympia. Our next meeting is Sunday, July 11 from 2-4:30 p.m. We will start the film at approximately 3:15. (It's 57 minutes long; that will leave us about 15 minutes for a post-film discussion.) Guests are welcome to attend the entire meeting or just come for the film and discussion. For more information, visit out website at For more on the film visit

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Pride events

We hope you will stop by the PFLAG booth at the Capital City Pride festival Saturday, June 12 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Come and march with us behind the PFLAG banner in the Pride Parade Sunday, June 13 and join us again at our regular PFLAG-Olympia meeting Sunday after the parade from 2-4:30 p.m. when our guest speakers will be representatives from Gender Alliance of South Sound.

Yes, Pride is a two-day event this year.

Saturday 11 a.m.-5 p.m. in Sylvester Park

1 p.m. - headliner entertainment by Kimya Dawson
2 p.m. - Captain Smartypants, the comedic ensemble from the Seattle Men's Chorus

Other local and regional entertainers, food and information booths all day in the park

Sunday family picnic in Sylverster Park 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Parade from the Capital to the park starts at noon.

PFLAG meeting from 2-4:30 p.m. at First United Methodist Church, 1224 Legion Way SE in Olympia
Introductions, announcements, group discussion, snacks and social time from 2-4:30, program featuring guest speaker Rachel Welkin (and probably others) from the Olympia chapter of Gender Alliance of the South Sound from 3:30-4:30 p.m.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Play about homophobia opening in Olympia

Prodigal Sun Productions in Olympia is producing "Stop Kiss" by Diana Son.

Here's the description from Wikipedia:

"It focuses on the touching story of friends-turned-lovers, Sara and Callie, who are assaulted for kissing. The story is centered around a hate crime that is a direct result of homophobia.

"Sara and Callie are walking through New York City's West Village, when they share their first kiss. This leads to a vicious attack by a angry bystander, in which Sara is horribly injured. She falls into a coma, which becomes one of the major subjects of the play. George, Callie's good friend, tries to help with the situation, but there is little he can do. Peter, Sara's boyfriend from St. Louis, comes to help nurse her back to health. Throughout Stop Kiss, relationships are explored, formed, and even ended. Diana Son elaborates on the depths of human emotion and compassion in this play.

"The story is told out of chronological order: alternating scenes take place respectively before and after the assault, which is not shown onstage."

The show features Raychel Wagner as Callie, Katie Driscoll as Sara, Dennis Rolly as Detective Cole, Brian Jansen as George, Jon Tallman as Peter, and Bonnie Vandver as Mrs. Winsley.

What: Prodigal Sun Productions presents the play STOP KISS by Diana Son
Directed by Elizabeth Lord
When: February 12-13, 18-21, 25-27, 2010
Special "Pay-what-you-can" performance Thursday February 18.
Showtime: 8:00 PM for all dates.
Doors open at 7:30.
Where: The Midnight Sun Performance Space 113 N. Columbia St. in downtown Olympia
Tickets: $12.00 available at the door night of show, or online:
Pay-what-you-can on Thurs. February 18th.

More info: go to or telephone 360-250-2721

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Correction: date of PFLAG meeting

If you saw yesterday's post about the showing of Brother Outsider at the next meeting of PFLAG-Olympia, please note there was an incorrect date. It will be Sunday, Feb. 14 -- that's Valentine's Day.

More info on the PFLAG-Olympia website

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Brother Outsider

We are really, really excited to show "Brother Outsider" at the next PFLAG meeting this Sunday, Valentine's Day, Feb. 14 from 2-4:30 p.m.

About Brother Outsider: The Life of Bayard Rustin -- A leader in the Civil Rights movement who was kept under wraps primarily because he was an openly gay man, Rustin was a mentor to Dr. Martin Luther King and the prime organizer of the March on Washington. This film is a fascinating look at the life of a little known but very important leader. There will be a short discussion after the film viewing.

Our usual meeting format will be adjusted to allow for time for the film and discussion.

The viewing of this film is part of a larger diversity outreach project. about which there is more information in the January-February newsletter.

Note: Our usual meeting room, The Gathering Room, is being used by the church so we will meet in room 221-222 down the ramp to the right as you enter the front door. Watch for signs.

PFLAG meets at First United Methodist Church at Boundary and 5th Ave., Olympia.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Brother Outsider

Here's a heads-up on a special program planned for our February PFLAG meeting scheduled for Sunday, February 14, 2-4:30 pm.

Brother Outsider

We will show the wonderful film Brother Outsider: The Life of Bayard Rustin. A leader in the Civil Rights who was kept under wraps primarily because he was an openly gay man, Rustin was a mentor to Dr. Martin Luther King and the prime organizer of the March on Washington. This film is a fascinating look at the life of a little known but very important leader. There will be a short discussion after the film viewing.

Our usual meeting format will be adjusted to allow for time for the film and discussion.

The viewing of this film is part of a larger diversity outreach project. about which there is more information in the January-February newsletter.

Location and directions for PFLAG meetings on the website at