Queer as Folks

Two Cities, One Love

On the heels of Twin Cities Pride was this year’s Black Pride, August 1-3, organized by Color CoordiNation, which states that it “connects, cultivates and sustains lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities of color.”

Black Pride at Minnehaha Falls Park. Photo by Sophia Hantzes

On Friday, a kickoff at Pi Bar & Restaurant was a festive night of food, drinks, and dancing. The activities moved to Minnehaha Falls Park on Saturday, where everyone involved enjoyed a barbecue, games, and even more entertainment including an open mic. Ending on a high note Sunday, the finale was a roller skating party at The Roller Garden that featured a mix of music from oldies to hip-hop and soul.

Color CoordiNation thanks its Pride Partners for a successful Black Pride that connected more than 3,000 people at the partnered events.
Laura Smidzik. Photo by Sophia Hantzes

Smidzik Is New Project 515 Executive Director

Laura Smidzik is the new Executive Director of Project 515, a nonprofit organization seeking to change the more than 515 laws that specifically deny same-sex couples the same rights and considerations as straight couples under Minnesota Law. She is the former Executive Director of Rainbow Families.

According to a Project 515 statement, “Smidzik brings advocacy, education experience to the organization’s efforts to highlight benefits and obligations denied to same-sex families.”

Project 515 board member Susan Cogger added, “Project 515 is very fortunate to have Laura serve as our Executive Director. Her nonprofit leadership experience and high standing in the community are wonderful assets for our growing organization.”

For more information, visit www.project515.org.
Lynx Go Pink at Target Center. Photo by Sophia Hantzes

Lynx Go Pink

Pink is the new green, as the Minnesota Lynx held the first Lynx Go Pink on July 31 in support of the Jean Stankoski Scholarship Fund and the Minnesota Lynx Foundation. Lynx players were on hand to greet fans, and help boost support for both beneficiaries. For as little as $25, everyone was able to enjoy carnival fare from corn dogs and cotton candy (pink of course!) to favorite carnival games staffed by Lynx players and coaches.

The Minnesota Lynx Foundation supports breast cancer research programs in Minnesota. The Jean Stankoski Scholarship Fund provides postsecondary education scholarships to Minnesota students directly impacted by breast cancer in their immediate family. The fund is in memory of Jean Stankoski, a Lynx and Timberwolves employee who lost her battle with breast cancer in 2006, and was an advocate for postsecondary education opportunities for all.

For more information, visit www.wnba.com/lynx/team.

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