Diner event a deal breaker
CHARLOTTE — The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Carolinas has announced its first 2009 Gala “Let’s Make a Deal” Diner event to be held on Aug. 26 at Alley Cat, 314 N. College St., at 7 p.m. This soirée will help launch the theme of “Imagine.”

For two years, the HRC Carolinas Dinner Committee has presented the HRC Diner, a lower cost fundraiser for the Gala. The Diner event will feature dinner, drag and a DJ. The theme will be a spoof of the late ’70s and early ’80s game show, “Let’s Make a Deal.” Roxy C. Moorecox will serve as the hostess. DJ Edward Jones will be spinning the tunes.

For those too young to remember the show, check out clips on YouTube. And, for those old enough to remember, dust off those costumes, grab some random stuff from the junk drawer and come prepared to win some fabulous and not-so-fabulous prizes.

Tickets for the HRC Diner event will be sold at the door. The cost is $25, which buys a meal and non-alcoholic beverages. A cash bar is available. Students can receive a $5 discount with a valid student ID. Doors open at 7 p.m. with DJ music. Dinner is at 8 p.m. and the show begins at 8:30 p.m. After the show, the DJ will continue to play for those wishing to dance the night away.

For more information, visit

Chorus season begins
SALISBURY — The Salisbury-Rowan Choral Society, an open and affirming chorus, is accepting new members through Sept. 9.

No audition is required, however the director will listen to candidates in a group setting to ensure proper voice placement.

The Society has been providing a wide variety of music for almost a century. It is under LGBT leadership, including the new director, Damien Evans, and accompanist, Daniel Sloop.

A meet and greet was held on Aug. 12 followed by a first rehearsal on Aug. 19 at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 200 W. Innes St.

The first concert, “A Holiday Tapestry,” will be held on Nov. 30. In March, listen to a masterworks concert celebrating the passion of 20th and 21st century choral composers. Then in June, spend an afternoon enjoying folk, pop and broadway favorites with a twist with the Spring Pops event.

For more information, call 704-224-7148, email or visit

RAIN and MAP make CBS appearance
CHARLOTTE — RAIN (Regional AIDS Interfaith Network) Founder, President and CEO, Rev. Deborah C. Warren and Metrolina AIDS Project (MAP) Executive Director Ann C. White and Associate Director Bob Oltz were interviewed by New York-based CBS News Correspondent and journalist Randall Pinkston. The story was shown during the weekend of Aug. 16-17. The interviews took place from Aug. 6-7.

News crews spoke with and interviewed staff members, pastors and others about their role is educating and serving the Southern region.

Warren stated: “The South needs more. This is a critical time to raise awareness of community and political leaders. Together we can influence policies that provide medial treatment and supportive services for our neighbors who need it most.”

“We are a professional team with a mission, and we are committed to honoring that mission as the largest HIV/AIDS service organization in the region,” White said.

Pinkston, a winner of five national and local Emmy awards, also served four years as the White House correspondent for CBS News.

The interview took place during the regular broadcast of CBS Evening News.

The focus of the interview was on the AIDS epidemic in the South and how African-American churches were responding to the increase in HIV positive cases in the African-American community.

For more information, visit and

Sing it out!
CHARLOTTE — One Voice Chorus will begin its next season’s rehearsals on Sept. 9 at Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte, 234 N. Sharon Amity Rd., at 7 p.m. They have extended an invitation for music loving community members to join them to continue the mission of increasing understanding and acceptance of LGBT people.

The Chorus traveled to Miami in July for the GALA Choruses Festival 2008. The full Chorus performed under the direction of John Herrick and Sotto Voce was directed by Dawn Broom. One Voice has said that there has been an outpouring of accolades from across the country on their performance.

New Artistic Director Gerald Gurss (pictured), along with the planning committee have been preparing for the upcoming concert season.

Gurss has traveled the globe, performing in many choral and chorus groups. He strives for the best sound and performance possible, with themes inspired by poetry. He is ready to bring his voice to the Queen City.

Albert Camus has inspired the season. He stated: “In the depth of Winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible Summer.” The holiday performance, “Depth of Winter,” will take place on Dec. 5 and 6. Each concert will reflect a portion of Camus’s passage.

For more information, call Pam Young at 704-650-9849 or visit


Dive in!
NEW BERN — Ever wanted to become a Jaques Cousteau (or Jackie!)? Then here’s a great chance.

A small group of women from Crystal Coast Family are looking for others who already know how to scuba dive, those who need to recertify and, even better yet, those diver wannabes just hankering to learn, to join them in the deep blue sea.

Certification courses are usually available at any dive shop. One such place is Divin Dogs. Classes can be worked around life schedules. Initial start up gear, i.e., snorkle, fins and mask, is fairly inexpensive and costs between $80-$100. Bouyancy compensators (BCD), tank, weight and air can be rented, but is usually covered in the cost of the class which runs around $165 with textbook about $50.

Certification is required to rent equipment from any reputible dive outfit not to mention the knowledge keeps one safe 80 feet down.

Other dive venues are located in this coastal area.

For more information, email


Join the campaign
GREENSBORO — The Guilford Green Foundation (GGF) has launched its 2008 Straight Ally Campaign and wants others to join its movement.

GGF says that unity and fairness aren’t beliefs held just by the LGBT community, but by straight Greensboro residents as well. They encourage everyone to speak out and join a movement of individuals who value unity and fairness regardless of sexual orientation.

By donating to become a straight ally in this year’s campaign, contributors’ names will appear in an ad slated to appear on Oct. 13 in The News & Record.

The Foundation is also calling for nominations for this year’s Straight Ally.

A straight ally is someone who is not gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender (LGBT), but personally supports fair treatment of LGBT people. Straight allies are some of the most effective advocates for the LGBT movement because their voices are often heard when others are not.

This year we are asking the community to play a role in who will be featured in the Straight Ally Campaign Ad in The News & Record. Has a straight ally made a difference in your life or a difference in the local LGBT community? Let GGF know.

Send the Foundation a description of how this straight ally has made a difference and why they should be featured in The News & Record.

For details on how to make a contribution or nominate someone, visit


Scouts’ honor
CHAPEL HILL — An LGBT-led family is interested in forming a Daisy/Brownie troop, with an interest meeting slated for the first week of September.

Daisies are grades Kindergarten and 1. Brownies are grades 2 and 3.

They plan to meet in Chapel Hill.

The organizing family has a small group of interested families so far and would love to welcome others who are interested in joining.

For more information, email and your interest will be forwarded to the organizing family.


HRC Carolinas announces theme
CHARLOTTE — The Human Right’s Campaign (HRC) Carolinas on July 25 released the theme for the 2009 HRC Carolinas Gala Dinner. Transformed by recent successes, engaged as one community and inspired by greater potential, HRC Carolinas has chosen “Imagine” as the theme for its annual fundraising event. The symbol for the Gala is a pinwheel, reflecting back to one’s youthful imagination.

The theme serves to instill a sense of wonderment, diversity and ideas. HRC Carolinas hopes it will challenge one to go further than what HRC achieves by its mission. It’s hope is to demonstrate that the LGBT and straight-supportive community is one of a unified people that share a strong belief in equality.

The 2009 HRC Carolinas Gala Dinner will be held at the Charlotte Convention Center on Feb. 21, 2009, beginning at 6 p.m. The 2008 Gala event boasted nearly 1,200 attendees. For this fifth and final run in the Queen City, prior to moving to Raleigh in 2010, organizers expect record numbers will again attend. In recent years, the HRC Carolinas dinner was second in size only to the HRC National dinner in Washington, D.C. The Charlotte Westin will serve as host hotel.

Sign up to be a Table Captain and motivate nine friends to join you at your table. Visit the website to learn how.

The HRC Carolinas Dinner is not by invitation only. It is open to anyone who purchases a ticket. The Gala ticket price is $175 through Jan. 31, 2009, and $225 thereafter. Price includes a one-year membership in HRC and a subscription to the quarterly HRC magazine. Tickets to the event are available online by visiting

S.C. ‘queen’ reigns over ‘America’s Got Talent’
STATEWIDE — Dorae Saunders (pictured), a former Miss Pride Charlotte and star in the movie “Trantasia,” has been chosen among the top 40 contenders in NBC’s “America’s Got Talent.”
The third season of the show will return with live episodes to whittle down the crowd of contestants after NBC’s broadcasts of the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Saunders, a Columbia native, was recognized for accomplishments this past winter by the Carolinas Black Pride Movement and is most widely known for her performance of Tina Turner. The gig has managed to land her a slot on the upcoming “AGT” finals.

Stay tuned to Q-Notes as Miss Della posts updates on Saunders’ adventures in Hollywood.

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Lainey Millen

Lainey Millen was formerly QNotes' associate editor, special assignments writer, N.C. and U.S./World News Notes columnist and production director from 2001-2019 when she retired.