Step on stage
CHARLOTTE — The Carolinas Black Pride Movement (CBPM) is opening casting and audition calls for its March play, “Before it hits home.”
The play is directed by Jermaine Nakia Lee and jointly produced by CBPM and the Afro-American Cultural Center.

A synopsis of the play reads, “Wendal Bailey is an African-American bisexual male in his early 30’s. Examined in this drama are Wendal’s two worlds; one which revolves around his love life, the other based in the home of his extended family — his mother, father, “aunt,” brother and 12-year-old son. After nearly dying of complications from AIDS, Wendal comes home to regain his strength and find comfort, but a festive evening celebrating his return turns disastrous. As events unfold, the only support and love he finds as he lies in a bed of uncertainty comes from an unexpected source.”

The play is written by Cheryl West.

Auditions will be held Jan. 10 and Jan. 11. More information is available via Jermaine Nakia Lee, 704-777-8208.

The play will be presented March 6-7 at the Afro-American Cultural Center, 401 North Myers St. Tickets are $12 and may be purchased through the Cultural Center’s box office at
“Before it hits home” will be presented during the Black Church Week of Prayer for the Healing of AIDS.

Book club finds home
CHARLOTTE — The Lesbian & Gay Community Center, 820 Hamilton St., Suite B11, has announced that the newly formed Lesbian Book Club will start its meetings there on Dec. 30 from 6-8 p.m. Coordinator is Amber Shockley. The first book selected for discussion will be “Backslide” by Teresa Stores. The book should be secured before the meeting.

The club is open to the entire LGBT and ally community, but will focus on lesbian literature. Participants may bring a snack to munch on, as well as a beverage.

For more information or directions to the Center, call 704-333-0144 or email Amber at

PrideSisters rings in new year
CHARLOTTE — Join PrideSisters to welcome in 2009 at family-friendly Steamer’s Sports Pub, 1513 Pierson Dr., on Dec. 31.

Enjoy the big bash that includes a toast at midnight and traditional party favors. There is no cover charge.

For more information or directions, call 704-568-9273, email or visit

Time for a date?
CHARLOTTE — An all-girls speed dating event will be held on Jan. 7 at 7 p.m. at Cafe Room and Lounge, 1250 Lucky Penny St.

Spend time meeting and mingling with other single ladies for the purpose of business networking and possible relationships.

Cost is $15 and includes food, drink specials and live music.

Participants must be 21-years-old or over. Pre-registration is required.
For more information, call 704-492-0069 or email

‘L Word’ premiere
CHARLOTTE — The final and sixth season of the critically-acclaimed “The L Word” will jump into action on Jan.18 at Club Alive, 2909 N. Davidson St., in the Highland Mills Lofts at 9 p.m.

Enjoy chocolate covered strawberries, food, giveaways and more.
VIP seating, including a personal tray of strawberries, no waiting in line and up front seating, is available by calling 704-649-9889.

Admission is $6.

Party after the show to the music of DJ Jes.

The season will continue at this location with starting time at 8 p.m.
The event is sponsored by Razz Berry Chocolate Berries, Two Partners Travel & Events, RealEyes Bookstore, RedFrog and Zoe Nail Salon and Spa.

For more information, email

Rent it!
CHARLOTTE — Join Out on The Town for a post-show party immediately following the 7:30 p.m. performance of “RENT” on Jan. 29, 2009, at Ovens Auditorium, 2700 E. Independence Blvd.

The show stars Adam Pascal and Anthony Rapp.

Enjoy free food and drinks as you mingle with some of the cast and crew from this Tony Award-winning musical. This party is only open to those that have purchased tickets, so make sure to get them early. “RENT” cast and crew have been invited but there are no guarantees regarding which member(s) will attend the party.

To attend, email your RSVP to Danny Knaub at
For ticket information, visit


Pour on a new year
GREENVILLE — Greenville AQUA (Greenville NC Area Queer Anouncements List) has announced that it is planning a gathering at Tipsy Teapot, 409 S. Evans St., on New Year’s Eve from 8 p.m.-12:30 a.m.

The event will be a potluck-styled one. Participants are asked to bring a favorite dish or snack to share. Wine and beer will be available for sale at the bar.

For more information, email

Hanging out at the White House
GREENVILLE — NC Family member Holly Garriott recently designed an ornament that is now adorning the White House Christmas tree. Hers was selected from about 400 submitted from across the U.S.

She was on hand on Dec. 2 when she got to see the ornament on the tree as well as being greeted by First Lady Laura Bush.

U.S. Rep. Walter B. Jones selected her to craft the piece on behalf of his district. She works annually alongside Jones to organize the Congressional High School Art Competition.

Garriott is executive director of Emerge Gallery and Art Center and is on the faculty at East Carolina University.

The decorative piece includes a cardinal, Hatteras lighthouse, dogwood, pottery and a tobacco leaf. It is done in a red, white and blue motif.


Town votes to support marriage
CHAPEL HILL — Less than a week after the town council of Carrboro voted to support marriage equality for same-sex couples, the Chapel Hill Town Council unanimously approved a similar resolution.

Presented by Tom Greene, a teacher at Chapel Hill High School who moved to North Carolina with his partner, the resolution was adopted at the council’s meeting on Monday, Dec. 8. Openly gay Councilman Mark Kleinschmidt urged the council to immediately endorse it, instead of asking for advice from counsel.

Greene said he moved to Chapel Hill because he and his partner knew “in this town we would at least be treated as human beings.” Greene’s partner was recently denied coverage under Greene’s state employee health care plan.

The vote affirms the town’s long-standing vision for acceptance and equality. In part, the resolution asked the city to “endorse and support the rights of same-sex couples to share fully and equally in the rights, responsibilities and commitments of civil marriage.”

The resolution, like Carrboro’s, will be forwarded to state and federal legislators.

HRC Carolinas chairs sought
RALEIGH — Applications are now being accepted for co-chairs for the 2010 Human Rights Campaign Carolinas Gala Dinner to be held at the Raleigh Convention Center in February 2010.

Applications are due no later than Feb. 2, 2009.

To be considered, visit and download and complete an application and send to Joni Madison at

The steering committee is also seeking others who may be interested in serving in other capacities.

For more information, email Jessica Lamb at


Wafting scent
HICKORY — Aroma of Art (AOA), a month-long silent art auction, will take place the month of February 2009 at Taste Full Beans Coffeehouse and Gallery, 29 Second St. NW.

AOA benefits three non-profit agencies: AIDS Leadership Foothills-area Alliance, Humane Society of Catawba County and Women’s Resource Center. Conceived in 2003 by D.W. Bentley and Edgar Hernandez of Taste Full Beans Coffeehouse, the unique event raises operating dollars for the three diverse community agencies. The 2009 goal for AOA is $10,000, which will be evenly divided among the three non-profits.

Area artists are asked to donate to the auction pieces of art, pottery, handcrafted items, photography, jewelry and the like. Patrons of Taste Full Beans can bid on the auction items the entire month of February. Artists who wish to donate are asked to drop off their items on Jan. 15 from 5-6:30 p.m. at Taste Full Beans Coffeehouse.

Sponsors to date for the seventh annual event are WHKY-Radio; Delores Hammer, DDS; Pepsi of Hickory; and Ralph Doernberg. The Bidding Kick-off Wine & Coffee Reception is Jan. 30 from 5-7 p.m. The finale takes place Feb. 28 from 5-7:30 p.m., with bidding ending at 6:30 p.m.

The first nine artists that donate to AOA 2009 will be highlighted on the AOA blog.

For more information, contact Taste Full Beans Coffeehouse at 828-325-0108 or email

Prop 8 takes scene
BOONE — On Dec. 9-10, Appalachian State University (ASU) Faculty and Staff Opposed to Proposition 8 hosted an information table about California’s recent results in ASU’s Student Union. Boone Impact was co-sponsor. In November, California voted 52 percent in favor for a ballot initative to amend the California’s Constitution to restrict marriage to one man and one woman after several months of allowing same-sex marriage. The table acted as a distribution point for White Knots postcards addressed to President-Elect Barak Obama and information about marriage equality.

A petition calling for the repeal of DOMA to be sent to Obama resulted in dozens of names despite being held at the end of the semester.

White Knot is a national organization fighting for marriage equality. The group’s logo is a white ribbon, taking two traditional symbols of marriage — white and tying the knot — and combines them in a simple way to show support for the right of gays and lesbians to marry. They are working in partnership with Join the Impact and other activist organizations in the fight to end this discriminatory issue.

Directions for creating knots are available on the White Knot website, as well as artwork for T-shirts, blog and web ads and other resource materials.

For those who are interested in joining additional Boone Impact activities, email or The next event is slated for Jan. 10 at the Watauga County Public Library.

For more information, visit


The girls are back!
STATEWIDE — The Human Rights Campaign and Showtime present the Season 6 premiere of “The L Word” on Jan. 18. Join thousands of women across the country at a party for equality near you. Space is limited, so RSVP now. Attendees must be 18-years-old or over.

In Charlotte, jump over to the Actor’s Theatre, 650 E. Stonewall St. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the premiere begins at 6:30 p.m.
Visit to capture a seat.

In Greensboro, hop over to Q Lounge, 708 W. Market St. Doors open at 6 p.m. and screening is at 8 p.m.

Visit to reserve a place.

In Raleigh, skip over to The CC, 313 W. Hargett St. Doors open at 6 p.m. and screening is at 7 p.m. Federal Club members will have a private screening earlier that day. Doors open at 3 p.m. and the premiere is at 4 p.m.

Visit to secure a spot.

Suggested donation for tickets is $10. Reservations are due by Jan. 16 at 5:30 p.m.

info: Announce your community event in NC News Notes.
email: or fax 704-531-1361.

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.