Retreat proposals form open

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Freedom Center for Social Justice has announced that its Transgender Faith and Action Network Retreat call for proposals form is live.

The retreat will be held from Aug. 16-19 at the Montreat Conference Center, 401 Assembly Dr., in Montreat, N.C. The event affords an affirming space for participants to network, decompress, heal, engage and collaborate together.

“We are looking for trans educators, artists, healers and more to join us in leading (and participating in) workshops, panels and cultural programming,” center program coordinator Sam Poler said. One does not have to be a professional. Volunteers are welcome to provide a movie night, read queer love stories together, give manicures, discuss Holy text, host a makeup tutorial session, take selfies in the forest and more.

“The retreat is all about intentionality this year. We want this space to be by and for trans folks. What do you want to do? What do you want to experience? What do you want to feel, learn, teach, witness? We’re not looking for conference-style sessions, we’re looking to hold space for the varied offerings that you bring,” Poler added. The retreat also needs conference sessions and submissions are encouraged.

For more information, email Poler at


Tri-Cities nets new LGBTQ org

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. — TriPrideTN, which was formed in October 2017, is gearing up for its first annual TriPride Parade and Festival on Sept. 15, Go Tri Cities reported.

The event will be the culmination of volunteer efforts to bring a more inclusive, visible presence to the area. It “aims to celebrate the LGBTQ community and welcome their allies, supportive non-profit organizations, faith congregations and local businesses.”

The TriPrideTN name includes the Tri-Cities area (comprised of Johnson City, Kingsport, Tenn., Bristol, Tenn., Bristol, Va., in addition to Southwest Virginia).

Go Tri Cities reported that after taking a look at the LGBTQ Pride festivals and progress made in Nashville, Knoxville and Asheville, N.C., founder George Chamoun asked, “If they can do it, why can’t we?”


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Does your organization or special interest group have events or great information to share with our readers? If so, be sure to send in your information to In the upcoming months, we’ll feature one of you in our news notes section in each issue. Are you a part of a Meetup, Yahoo or Google group and do you do something that’s really newsworthy? Do you provide a service for the community or hold fundraisers for worthy causes? Do you educate the public about LGBTQ issues or concerns? Of course, this is only a sampling of things we are interested in. It’s the aim of these pieces to inform, enlighten and educate our readers about what we’re doing here in the Carolinas to champion LGBTQ rights, as well as offer resources for those who may be interested in what your group is doing.

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.