What’s New in Queer Louisville, Kentucky

Author: , December 18th, 2017

Queer Louisville

It’s 2 A.M. on a Thursday night, and I’m at Nowhere (1133 Bardstown Rd. Tel: 502451-0466. www.nowherelouisville.com) in Louisville’s Highlands neighborhood. It’s ironic, though, because “Nowhere” feels decidedly “somewhere”—particularly in today’s gay landscape. I’m struck by the LGBT diversity: genders and sexual identities, along with race and age, seem to have fallen by the wayside. I wonder if it may be my Bourbon-colored glasses that are tinting my impression of Derby City. Cocktails flow freely around nearly every corner, and Bourbon culture is deeply embedded in the city’s roots. But so are equal rights and corporate citizenship, which have positioned Louisville as a go-to destination with Southern charm and progressive values.

Named after France’s Louis XVI for his support of the fledgling US during the Revolutionary War, Louisville has been ahead of the curve since its founding in 1778. It was the nation’s first city to introduce the secret ballot to deter voter fraud, served as an important military hub for the Union Army during the Civil War, and was Kentucky’s first state to implement zoning laws to strategically shape urban growth. Today, Louisville is the state’s only city to achieve a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign’s municipal equality index that rates LGBT laws, policies, and services.

Much of the recent momentum stems from Mayor Greg Fischer, whose stalwart support of the LGBT community has rippled through Louisville’s residents. “A compassionate city is an inclusive, diverse, and tolerant city—period. You don’t turn people away; you embrace the diversity,” says Mayor Fischer, who has held the position since 2011. “We’re proud of our 100 percent score on the Human Rights Campaign’s Equality Index for the second year in a row, because we know that to maintain our forward momentum as a city, we need to work to ensure that everyone—everyone!—has the ability to reach their full human potential.”

By Matthew Wexler – Full Story at Passport Magazine

Kentucky Gay Travel Resources

Has the World Changed for Queer Travelers?

Author: , October 14th, 2017

aul J. Heney and partner in Rio de Janeiro

Over the last few years, the acceptance of LGBTQ people has improved a great deal in most of the Western world—including the legalization of same sex marriage across the United States. But there are always pockets of greater and lesser acceptance in different regions, countries and cities.

We asked some frequent travelers what their experiences have been.

Keenan McGarvey, a 25-year old teacher from Seattle, believes the world has changed in regard to the LGBTQ community, and his experiences have been positive.
“In my experience that [positivity] is reflected more in the other travelers I meet than in the places I go to visit,” he said. “As a gay man, I already have the tendency to choose travel destinations where I am not going to be scrutinized too closely for busting out a pair of short-shorts. But I also feel that in general as a tourist, most places do not investigate your sexuality during your visit. What I have noticed is that I feel much more comfortable being myself and dropping pronouns about my exes in conversation with other travelers I meet than I maybe would have five years ago.”

Valerie and Jessi are married travelers who describe themselves as nomads. They have visited a new city or state every 2-4 weeks for the past 9 months. They see “immense” changes, at least in the U.S. “As a lesbian couple traveling from our safe harbor of San Francisco, not once did we face the discrimination we once faced when coming out 10 years ago,” they explained. “With that said, we are also white, cis-gendered, and have feminine energies that often present ‘straight.’ Our perspective is limited to our experience, but we came out to a lot of people all over the USA and never once had a mean remark, snarky look, nor a negative response. Did we get lucky? Probably. But we were surprised how warm and accepting people were.”

By Paul Heney – Full Story at Travel Pulse

LOCATION Gay Travel Resources

Queer Phoenix – New Now Next

Author: , August 10th, 2017

Phoenix - Pixabay

Phoenix gets more than 330 days of sunshine per year. I live in Pittsburgh, which is officially one of the most overcast cities in America. So when I was presented with an opportunity to spend six days in Phoenix at the start of spring, I jumped at the chance.

The Phoenix area also sees highs of well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer — but it’s that delicious, famously “dry heat” that evaporates the sweat right off your skin. Coming off the end of a long, snowy winter, the desert heat was nothing short of transformative for me — it offered the perfect excuse to wear as little clothing as possible, find my way to a pool during the day, and keep an ice cold drink in my hand after dark.

This queer, sunshine-loving traveler’s guide covers when to go, where to stay, where to eat and drink, and what to do to make the most of your adventure in greater Phoenix.

Go to Queer Phoenix

The Sonoran Desert offers sun and heat most of the year, but November through April generally offer the most temperate weather — clear skies and average temperatures in the high 60s, 70s, and low 80s. That said, you may want to avoid going in March — there’s a huge spring training baseball event, so airfare and hotel prices skyrocket and everything is more crowded than usual. April is LGBT Pride month in Phoenix, and the city’s Pride organization goes all out with events, including a festival, parade, and pageant.

Stay in Queer Phoenix

Both Scottsdale and Phoenix (including downtown Phoenix, for those who prefer to be amid the hustle and bustle) have no shortage of LGBT-friendly accommodations in every price range. Scottsdale, Phoenix’s immediate neighbor, reportedly has more spas per capita than any other US city—and many of them are among the most scenic in the world, thanks in large part to the stunning desert views available from their picture windows and soaking tubs.

By Kristina Marusic – Full Story at New Now Next

Phoenix Gay Travel Resources