The Austin Chronicle

Qmmunity: Memories of Queers Past

Plus, QTBIPOC dance party Fuego turns up the heat and more queer events

By Beth Sullivan, September 3, 2021, Columns

Yours truly has been around for only a small fraction of the Chronicle's 40-year odyssey. But what I lack in memories of the paper's Eighties and Nineties folklore, I've been fortunate enough to make up for (or at least fill in) with the stories of the many Austinites who have played a part in our city's storied history, some of whose work and efforts have been covered in these very pages, particularly our LGBTQIA community. The ones that stick out to me the most come from my interviews in 2019 for my and former Qmmunity Editor Sarah Marloff's feature on Austin's queer history ("The History of the LGBTQ Movement in Austin," News, Aug. 9, 2019), including longtime LGBTQIA rights advocate Janna Zumbrun. As I've mentioned here before, Zumbrun was the first gay person I'd ever met who'd lived through the Stonewall Riots era, but what struck me the most was her volunteer work as a "buddy" for Austinites living with HIV/AIDS to help them carry out day-to-day to tasks, like renewing their driver's license at the DMV when they were either too sick or wanted to avoid the stigma associated with the visible symptoms of the disease. The same can be said for artist Sharon Bridgforth, who in the early Nineties helped organized HIV outreach and early intervention efforts in queer communities of color and East Austin's communities of color, despite scarce support from local health officials. They helped me realize something I think we sometimes find easy to forget in hindsight: Progress isn't inevitable but often the product of one person, a community, a city realizing that doing the right thing and the hard thing are usually the same.

2 to Do

Fuego Austin's monthly QTBIPOC dance party-meets-artist market turns up the hotter-than-hot queer heat. Don't miss out on a 15-plus vendor market; music from DJs Chorizo Funk, Kickit, Famemade, and La Morena; and performances by Tatiana Cholula, Natasha Capri, and Arinna Dior. Fri., Sept. 3, 8pm. Cheer Up Charlies, 900 Red River. $5-10.

aGLIFF Closing Weekend Close out Austin's queer film fest with D'Arcy Drollinger's high-camp sendup of Seventies sexploitation films, Shit & Champagne. Post-screening Q&A with Drollinger, plus a drag show curated by Austin's Nadine Hughes. Sun., Sept. 5, 7pm. Pioneer Farms, 10621 Pioneer Farms Dr. Included with badge; GA, $20-40.

Q'd Up

aGLIFF: Prism 34 Badges and all the nitty-gritty at Through Sept. 6.

UnBEARable Mascara Rivers, Chique Fil-Atio, and Bulimianne Rhapsody. Thu., Sept. 2, 10pm. The Iron Bear, 301 W. Sixth.

aGLIFF Happy Hour Not your momma's Tupperware party, this is. Fri., Sept. 3, 5pm. Online. GA, $15.

It's Britney, Bitch Inspired by the life of Britney Spears, a rotating cast of performers – directed by Amy Knop and Dylan Garsee – come together from Austin's arts and comedy scenes (sketch, stand-up, acro, drag, and more) to humorously explore themes of empowerment, fame, mental health, the role of media, and the absurdity of our own participation in pop culture. Note: A portion of ticket sales will go to the Lilith Fund for Reproductive Equity. Through Sept. 25. Sat., 7pm. Fallout Theater, 616 Lavaca. $15-20.

Kink Bingo Don your gear. Sun., Sept. 5, 4-7pm. Oilcan's, 211 W. Fourth.

QueerBomb General Meeting Catch up with Austin's DIY, alt-Pride celebration. Sun., Sept. 5, 7-9pm. Online.

RAM Gear Party DJs Paulo and Jamey Boozer bring the underground NYC beats to Highland. Sun., Sept. 5, 9pm. Highland Lounge, 404 Colorado. $30-60.

Plunge Pool Party Fresh pool looks for a day party with DJ Dan De Leon. Mon., Sept. 6, 1-7pm. Rio Austin, 601 Rio Grande St. $30-50.

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