(left to right) Joshua Lancaster and Ron Keller net wins.

Run/walk nets funds

HICKORY, N.C. — The AIDS Leadership Foothills Alliance (ALFA) held it’s 6th annual AIDS awareness walk and run, Hike for Hope +5k, at Union Square on April 11.

The event has raised $16,194 to date. The funds will be used to assist with medical case management, education and outreach in ALFA’s nine-county western North Carolina service area.

The top individual fundraiser, Mark Bernard, of Hickory, N.C., raised nearly $1,000 of the event’s total. There were 50 participants.

Donald Keller of Hickory, N.C., was the winner of the 5k with a time of 18:49.3. Female winner was Agnese Barnett, Hickory, N.C., who finished with a time of 22:18.8. The youngest participant was 10-year-old Joshua Lancaster who finished the race at 29:45.1.

Belly dancing by Rhythm Essence, dance routines from Hickory Girls Fitness and a High Heel Dash helped to fill the day’s activities. The dash included, board president Leslie Cothren, treasurer Michael Bookout, case manager Bryan Gilliland and a number of other participants.

Preparations are underway for the 2016 Hike for Hope +5k.

Organizers want feedback on the event. Visit surveymonkey.com/r/8MT7HCK to participate. A drawing for two prizes, a five-class pass to Hickory Girls Fitness or a $25 Hickory Tavern gift card, will take place when the survey closes.

info: alfahikeforhope.org.

Author releases first novel

ASHEVILLE, N.C. — Tena Frank, a writer from North Carolina published her first in a series of novels last fall in the Tate Marlowe Mysteries entitled “Final Rights.” The freshman novel is set in Asheville’s historic Montford district.

Since then, she has been sharing her new foray into fiction to groups and others.

Her love of mysteries started when she was nearly 12-years-old when she stepped into a library for the first time. When she was in high school, she thought about writing. It remained a dream until now.

“Tate Marlowe presented herself to me in 1999 and just kept hanging around even though I often ignored her. I completed the rough draft of ‘Final Rights’ in November 2005 when I participated in National Novel Writing Month with a dear friend. I did very little with the story for several years, but I just couldn’t stop thinking about it,” she shared.

Author Tena Frank
Author Tena Frank

She added, “It’s true that Tate was born on a road trip! I was driving from New York to Florida for my grandniece’s third birthday. I rather casually said to the Universe that I’d like to write a story with a protagonist just like me. Within an hour, Tate emerged and her first story began writing itself. I’ve often said that Tate is me only taller and with better hair! Certainly, Tate and I have a lot in common. We share the same former career in New York, and we have many of the same life experiences. But as I wrote ‘Final Rights’ and began thinking about the next book, it became clear to me that Tate actually does have a life of her own. I expect our paths will diverge quite a bit as I write future stories.” She is planning a second novel that fully encompasses her initial revelation and creative spark to bring Tate Marlowe to actuality. Her first book took on a different storyline, but made for an introduction to her protagonist.

“In ‘Final Rights,’ the reader learns about actual events and places in Asheville’s rich history all woven into the fictional storyline. This will be the case in future novels as well,” she said. Tate’s next adventure takes her to Havre de Grace, Md., with a backdrop shaped by the town’s 19th century history and its role in U.S. history.

Frank came out at 32 years of age, saying that “coming out at that time felt risky and wildly adventurous, though it was not a difficult process for me.” She participates in two book clubs, one at Malaprops and one through a lesbian book club. He exposure to these outlets has helped shape her as a fiction writer.

info: tena-frank.com.

Youth group seeks vote

HICKORY, N.C. — King Law Office, 200 1st Ave. N.W., Suite 506, is gifting $1,000 to a non-profit in Catawba County and OUTright Youth of Catawba Valley wants to be the recipient.

In order to receive the contribution, participants are needed to cast votes for the youth organization through the month of May. Voting is available online at on.fb.me/1F0v4ae. The winner will be announced on Facebook on June 1.

info: outrightyouthcv.org.

Have news or other information? Send your press releases and updates for inclusion in our News Notes: editor@goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com.

Share your news with us
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 specialassignments@goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com. 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 LGBT 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 LGBT rights, as well as offer resources for those who may be interested in what your group is doing.

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.