The third annual LGBT Law Symposium, presented by the University of Mississippi School of Law, will be held on Friday, March 22nd from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Ole Miss' Robert C. Khayat Law Center.
The event features presentations and panels on law topics related to LGBT issues, including pro-bono advocacy and community involvement, HIV/AIDS, challenges and triumphs in the transgender community, diversity in the law profession, family law, and estate planning.
The symposium includes breakfast, lunch, and a cocktail party reception. An after-party will be held at 9 p.m. for those who wish to stay. The event is open to the public, and admission is free. To register, go here.
Members of Mid-South Pride and the LGBTQ community will be carrying a giant rainbow flag in this year's St. Patrick's Day parade along Beale Street on Saturday, March 16th at 3:30 p.m.
But once the parade is through, the party continues with a Rainbow Pub Crawl and Pot of Gold Poker Run. The crawl starts at the Pumping Station at 5 p.m. with a cookout. Then it moves to Dru's Place at 7:30 p.m. for games and karaoke. The crawl ends at Club Spectrum at 10:30 p.m. for drink specials and the drag show.
As part of the poker run, participants will receive a card with every drink purchased during the crawl. The player with the best hand at the end of the night wins. No word yet on what the prize is.
For more information, check out the event's Facebook page.
The annual Cherry party for lesbians and their friends will have a vintage Vegas theme this month, and it doubles as a birthday celebration for party host Julie Wheeler.
Set for Saturday, March 16th at Cafe Society, Cherry will feature a burlesque show with Kitty Wompas, Kissame Suga, and Anne Tag-A-Knee. After the show, Foxy Fairmont will perform an outdoor fire show. DJ Carol from the former Madison Flame will be spinning tunes, and chef Cullen Kent is offering a special light-night menu.
Bonus: One lucky winner will take home a $50 credit toward a tattoo at Underground Art.
General admission is $10 and VIP seating is $20.
For nine consecutive years, the Tennessee Equality Project has dedicated a day to lobbying state lawmakers in favor of bills that advance equality and against bills that take away equal rights or promote discrimination.
On Tuesday, March 12th, the Shelby County Committee will be joining other TEP committees from across the state in Nashville for Advancing Equality on the Hill Day.
The event begins with a light breakfast and policy briefing at the Rhymer Gallery in downtown Nashville at 8:30 a.m. At 9:30 a.m., the group will head to Legislative Plaza for individual appointments with lawmakers.
There's also a TEP Foundation and Clergy for Justice anti-bullying prayer breakfast from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. in the Legislative Plaza cafeteria. Clergy and other guests will hear presentations on school bullying issues to help them advocate for safe schools in Tennessee.
TEP will hold a press conference at 1 p.m. at the top of the escalator in Legislative Plaza to discuss important legislation and to make public the Tennessee Human Rights Statement, which provides a contrast to discriminatory legislation filed this session.
For more information, see the event's Facebook page.
Mid-South Pride is planning to march in the city's annual St. Patrick's Day Parade on Beale again this year.
But they need at least 60 walkers to carry their massive rainbow pride flag. The parade kicks off at 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 16th.
To volunteer, RSVP on the event's Facebook page.
Ever considered being a foster parent?
Youth Villages is hosting a presentation on how to be one this Tuesday, February 26th at 7 p.m. at the Memphis Gay & Lesbian Community Center. The session is free.
The Memphis Gay & Lesbian Community Center is located at 892 S. Cooper.
This weekend, Club Spectrum is hosting two days of sumo-style drag queen wrestling battles.
The preliminary fights will be held on Friday, February 22nd, and the championship battle goes down with reigning champion Demonica Santangelo on Saturday, February 23rd. Both events begin at 8 p.m.
Memphis-area professionals are invited to a meet-and-greet for corporate employee resource groups, business owners, entrepreneurs, LGBT and ally professionals, and their family and friends.
The event takes place on Thursday, February 21st from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Owen Brennan's (6150 Poplar). Professionals can use the opportunity to network with one another, learn about the programs and services at the Memphis Gay & Lesbian Community Center, and learn how to build a more engaged LGBT and ally community.
Professionals from the following companies are anticipated to attend: AutoZone, Baker Donelson, Delta Airlines, FedEx, First Tennessee Bank, Harrah's, Hilton Worldwide, International Paper, Medtronic, McDonald's, Merck, Methodist LeBonheur Healthcare, NIKE, ServiceMaster, Smith & Nephew, St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital, city governments, local universities, non-profit organizations and more.
Dress for the event is business casual, and attendees are encouraged to bring business cards. There will be a cash bar and light snacks. Those who attend will receive a free 30-day pass to exercise classes, fitness equipment, an indoor swimming pool, tennis courts, and more at the Memphis Jewish Community Center.
February is Eating Disorder Awareness Month, so Dr. Earl Donaldson of the University of Memphis's Career and Psychological Counseling Center will be presenting "Eating/Body Image: An LGBTQ Perspective" at the Memphis Gay & Lesbian Community Center (892 S. Cooper) on Thursday, February 21st from 7 to 9 p.m.
Donaldson will discuss how sexuality, gender identity, body image, unhealthy eating habits, culture, and self-concept affect the incidences of eating disorders in the LGBTQ community.
The Lez Go lesbian social club is hosting an outing to watch a matinee performance of "75 Rotations: Celebrating Maxine Strawder's Passion for Dance" on Sunday, February 17th at 2 p.m. at the Evergreen Theatre.
The dance performance pays tribute to local dancer Maxine "Silverbird" Strawder with choreography by Project: Motion. There will be live music, poetry, and special guest performances in this salute to Maxine on her 75th birthday.
The Lez Go group will meet outside the theatre at 1:40 p.m. There will be a group dinner at India Palace after the show. The cost is simply a donation made at the door, but seats must be reserved through Project: Motion in advance.
For more on "75 Rotations," read Chris Davis' blog post on Intermission Impossible.
The monthly installment of Cherry, a party for lesbians and their friends, is dedicated to love this Saturday, February 16th at Cafe Society.
There will be a dating game with a free date as a prize. Plus, Kitty Wompas, Anne Tag-a-Knee, Foxy Fairmont, and Passion Fruit will offer a burlesque performance. And host Julie Wheeler will surely crack a few jokes and sing a ditty or two.
Plus, there's complimentary hors d'oeuvres, $5 drink specials, and post-show dancing. Doors open at 9 p.m. and the cover is $10.
GenQ, the Memphis Gay & Lesbian Community Center group for college-aged LGBT people and their straight allies, is hosting "Dinner for the Hill" on Friday, Feb. 15th at MGLCC (892 S. Cooper) from 7 to 9 p.m.
The Mom Corps will be cooking recipes from my cookbook, Cookin' Crunk: Eatin' Vegan in the Dirty South. Donations will be collected at the door to help GenQ pay for an upcoming trip to Nashville where they'll be participating in the Tennessee Equality Project's "Advancing Equality on the Hill" Day.
During "Advancing Equality on the Hill," equality advocates meet with elected officials to discuss concerns and voice support for LGBT-friendly legislation.
After the Hallmark cards and boxes of chocolate have been exchanged, couples looking for something a little deeper will have a chance to get away this weekend for a Weekend Gay and Lesbian Couples Retreat.
Held at the Nelson Woods Retreat Center in Millington from February 15th through the 17th, the event will be led by Elaine Blanchard, the city's resident "master storyteller" and spiritual retreat leader. There will also be workshops on breathing, stretching, and relaxation techniques led by Leah Nichols of Evergreen Yoga.
For more information, email Elaine.
The annual Tennessee Equality Project Gumbo Contest and Mardi Gras Celebration will be held this Sunday, February 10th from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Earnestine & Hazel's.
The $10 entry fee makes you a judge in the People's Choice contest. You can sample gumbo from each of the 13 teams and vote for your favorite. A panel of judges will also rate the gumbos.
Judges this year include Patricio Gonzalez of Youth for Youth, Memphis City Councilman Lee Harris, Memphis-Shelby County School Board Commissioner Tomeka Hart, Cafe 1912 owner Glenn Hayes, and Rizzo's Diner chef/owner Michael Patrick.
Funds raised in the competition benefit Tennessee Equality Project's work to advance and protect the equality of LGBT people and their families in Tennessee.
Full disclosure: I'm entering my vegan tempeh gumbo in the contest. It's probably unethical for me to be writing about this, but hey it's all for a good cause.
The city's LGBT cycling club, the Rainbow Riders, will host another combination biking and lunch event this Saturday, February 9nd. An event was held on February 2nd, but many were unable to attend due to threats of winter weather.
The group will gather at Republic Coffee at 10 a.m., ride to Shelby Farms along the greenline, and then lunch at Cheffie's on the way back. The trip should be about 15 miles, and cyclists will be traveling at around 10 mph.
The event is free and open to the public. Bring your bike. For more information, check out the event's Facebook page.