Category Archives: Center on Halsted

Sean Chandler and David Leeper’s At The Flash, Opens this Week in Chicago

Pride Films and Plays is thrilled to announce that Sean Chandler and David Leeper’s At The Flash, winner of PFP’s Great Gay Play and Musical Contest in 2012, will have its world premiere at Center on Halsted’s Hoover-Leppen Theatre on November 17. 
The production will be PFP’s first Jeff-eligible show, and will run in the 150-seat theater through December 16. 
 At The Flash is a fierce and funny show that condenses LGBT history into the story of five characters – a closeted man in the 1960s, a black drag queen in the 1970s, a club kid in the 1980s, a budding lesbian activist in the 1990s, and a family man/entrepreneur in the 2000s.
 David Leeper stars under the direction of PFP Executive Director David Zak.
At the Flash will preview on November 16 at 7:30, and open on Saturday, November 17 at 7:30.
 Performances thereafter are Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 and Sundays at 3:30 through December 16 (closing day). There are also 7:30 performances on Wednesdays and Thursdays November 28, 29, December 5, 6, 12, and 13. Please note there is no Friday performance on December 7. 
 Preview tickets for At The Flash are $15. Thereafter, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday performances are $25, and Wednesday and Thursday are $21. Portions of each ticket sold support programming at Center on Halsted.
 Sean Chandler and David Leeper, legally married since 2008, reside in Woodland Hills, CA. Together and separately their scripts include At The Flash (Winner of 2012 Pride Films and Plays Great Gay Play and Musical Contest), Radical Morality (PFP Great Gay Screenplay Contest Semi-Finalist, Creative World Awards Semi-Finalist, Nicholl Fellowship Quarter-Finalist, Square Magazine Screenplay Contest Finalist), Kissing the Frog Prince (Scriptoid Festival, All Access Screenwriters Competition & The Screenplay
Festival Semi-Finalists) and The Pack (Creative World Awards Semi-Finalist). Works in progress include Everyday Joseph, Make Mine a Double, Benji
Boomer – Life Coach and Grand Matriculation. and 
Since it was founded in 2010, Pride Films and Plays has become an international center for the development of fresh work for the stage and screen, while re-examing classic gay texts.
 The season of full productions this year includes At The Flash and the musical Under a Rainbow Flag, both discovered in PFP’s 2012 Great Gay Play and Musical Contest, and a 20th anniversary revival of Jonathan Harvey’s coming-of-age classic Beautiful Thing, running January 17 to February 17 at Luna Central, 3944 N Clark. 
 Pride Films and Plays is now offering Premium Play Passes and Play Passes for its 2012-13 season. Premium Passes are $50 and include one ticket for each of the three full productions, plus 6 free tickets to the Gay Play Weekend, Gay Screenplay Weekend or Women’s Work Weekend. The names of Premium Pass holders will be also be listed in the season’s programs. This is a $120 value!
Play Passes are $40 and include one ticket for each of the three full productions and three tickets to the Gay Play Weekend, Gay Screenplay Weekend or Women’s Work Weekend. This is a $90 value.
Students and seniors over 60 can save $5 when purchasing either the Premium Pass or Play Pass.

Chicago Gay Film Weekend of Queer Shorts Oct 18-21

Screenplay Finalists!  AND  Short Film Program! 



$10 Individual Tickets

$45 Weekend Pass

Pride Films and Plays’ Gay Film Weekend will feature enhanced staged
readings of the Five Finalists in the Great Gay Screenplay Contest,
panels on the history and creation of LGBT film, and a Queer Shorts Film
Program guest curated by Indie Boots Film Festival.

Tickets for the screenplay readings and Queer Shorts Film Program are
each $10. The panels are both free. A Gay Play Weekend Pass allowing
admission to all events is $45. Tickets for individual events can be
purchased at, or calling 1 800 838 3006. Weekend passes can be purchased at 773 250 3112 or

The schedule for the weekend is:

Thursday, October 18

– 7:00pm – A Friend Of Dorothy’s, directed by Chuck Berglund

– 9:00pm – Opening Night Reception

Friday, October 19

– 7:00pm – Barrio Boy, directed by Kyra Morris

Saturday, October 20

– 3:00pm – Fr. Frances, directed by Sarah Ballema

– 5:00pm – Panel “The Evolution of LGBT Cinema”

– 7:00pm – Visalia, directed by John Nasca

Sunday, October 21

– 2:00pm – Snowmen, directed by Alex. St. John

– 4:00pm – Panel “Making LGBT Films in a Changing World”

– 5:00pm – Queer Shorts Film Program

– 7:00pm – Closing Night Reception

Each screenplay reading, and the Queer Shorts Film Program, will be followed by a discussion. 


Cyon Flare and Center on Halsted SHOUT Rooftop benefit Aug 19


Center on Halsted offers many Transgender focused and HIV Programs

July at the Center on Halsted….

July 2nd, 2012 – Charm School

       7:15 to 8:30 PM

       Charm School is hosted by Mamma Gloria and topics include transgender image, etiquette, and charm. This event is open to all young, transgender persons.


July 3rd, 2012 – Intersex Chicago

       6:30 to 9 PM

       Are you intersex? Have you ever felt you fall between the male and female check boxes? Intersex people physically differ from the “standard” male and female. These differences might be genetic, hormonal, or genital.  We have features typical of both male and female at once or may have no clearly defined sexual features at all.  There are many different kinds of intersex people.

       Intersex Chicago is a peer-led casual conversation group for those who identify as intersex or think they might be.  It is also open to significant others, family, friends, allies, or anyone with questions.

       Meet other intersex people at Intersex Chicago. Make new friends. Find out more about intersex.  Explore and celebrate your difference.

July 3rd, 20102 – Bisexuality Discussion Group

       7 to 9:30 PM

       An evening for bisexuals, bi-curious and bi-allies to form community, share ideas and connect with peers


July 4th, 2012 – HIV+ Support Group (22-34)

       6 to 7:30 PM

       For anyone living with HIV regardless of length of diagnosis, we offer HIV+ Support Groups. Our support groups run on 10-week cycles and are age-specific. The groups are facilitated by a mental health professional with extensive training in HIV and STDs and are a safe, confidential space for people who are living with HIV to share their experiences, to learn from each other, and to find support from others who may be going or may have gone through similar circumstances. Pre-registration required.


July 4th, 2012 – GenderQueer Chicago

       6:30 PM

       GenderQueer Chicago is a grassroots, peer-led group that works to create safe spaces for all of us to talk about, think about, explore, and express gender. Meetings are intended to be a safe, encouraging and supportive environment. They are open to those who wish to talk and think about gender!



July 6th, 2012 – Trans Amor

       6:30 to 9 PM

       A peer-led, casual conversation group open to current partners of gender non-conforming/transgender identified individuals, as well as those considering entering a relationship with someone who is gender non-conforming/transgender. T-Amor is always open to individuals of any gender identity/sexual orientation.

July 6th, 2012 – Man Cave

       A peer lead, casual conversation group, for those 18 and older, who identify as female to male, transgender individuals, or are female bodied and are questioning their gender. First and third Fridays of each month.


July 7th, 2012- HIV+ Support Group (22+)

       12 to 1:30 PM

       For anyone living with HIV regardless of length of diagnosis, we offer HIV+ Support Groups. Our support groups run on 10-week cycles and are age-specific. The groups are facilitated by a mental health professional with extensive training in HIV and STDs and are a safe, confidential space for people who are living with HIV to share their experiences, to learn from each other, and to find support from others who may be going or may have gone through similar circumstances. Pre-registration required.



July 9th, 2012 – Charm School

       7:15 to 8:30 PM

       Charm School is hosted by Mamma Gloria and topics include transgender image, etiquette, and charm. This event is open to all young, transgender persons.


July 10th, 2012 – The Confident Modern Family

       5:30 to 7:45 PM

       Join us for wine and hors d’oeuvres to learn how to create the modern family. There will be a panel discussion on the emotional, legal and financial complexities that LGBTQ families face. In addition, we will also give an overview of adoption and surrogacy options.

July 12th, 2012 – Parents of Transgender Individuals

       7 PM

       A peer lead, conversation and support group for those who are the parents of individuals, who identify as Transgender, or are questioning their gender.



July 12th, 2012 – HIV+ Support Group (35+)

       6 to 7:30 PM

       For anyone living with HIV regardless of length of diagnosis, we offer HIV+ Support Groups. Our support groups run on 10-week cycles and are age-specific. The groups are facilitated by a mental health professional with extensive training in HIV and STDs and are a safe, confidential space for people who are living with HIV to share their experiences, to learn from each other, and to find support from others who may be going or may have gone through similar circumstances. Pre-registration required.

July 14th, 2012 – 3656 Trans Ave

       6:30 PM

A series of seminars and workshops of interest to members the broad Trans community, including,  those who identify as female to male, male to female, as well as, gender queer as well as, their significant others, family members, friends, and allies.


The Legacy Project Chicago Rooftop Party June 30

GET TICKETS   ONLINE  NOW        (use  Internet Explorer please)


Civil Unions in Illinois and Estate Planning May 16


 Robert Iverson, an attorney at Lavelle Law, Ltd. will give a seminar at the Center on Halsted entitled, “Civil Unions:
 Important Estate Planning Considerations.”

The seminar will take place on Wednesday, May 16th from 6:30 -8:00 p.m. The Center on Halsted  3656 North Halsted.

The Illinois Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Union Act became effective on June
1, 2011. The law recognizes a new legal relationship that is in many ways similar to marriage,
but with certain limitations. Iverson will review the law and explain the rights and benefits of
Illinois citizens with Civil Union status. The seminar will include information about obtaining and
dissolving a Civil Union in Illinois, inheritance rights, the right to renounce a partner’s will,
factors involved with making important health decisions for an incapacitated partner, as well as
issues such as filing a joint state income tax return. “The new legislation is a big step for Illinois,
but it is important that partners fully understand what their union means legally,” said Iverson. “I
hope that, after the seminar, participants will have a clearer picture of the rights afforded by the
law, and how to best move forward with their legal relationship.”

Following the lecture, Iverson will make time for questions and an interactive discussion
about the law and its impact on those present.
Iverson focuses much of his practice at Lavelle Law on Estate and Tax Planning, Trust
and Estate Administration, Trust Controversy Litigation, and Contested Decedents’ Estates.
While attending John Marshall Law School, Iverson earned the CALI Excellence for the Future
Award in Taxation of Trusts and Estates and served as a Staff Editor of the Law Review.

Space is limited for the event, so pre-registration is required. To register for the event,

email with the event title in the subject line or call 773-472-6469 ext436.



GLBT Travel Expo May 1 at Center on Halsted

GLBT  TRAVEL  EXPO!    –   May  1st –  FREE Admission!

The 2012  Travel Expo Tour is an exciting event where
you can learn about new travel destinations, rediscover old ones, find
glbt friendly travel providers and get information to plan your next

Cruise lines
Car Rentals
Exotic Destinations
Convention & Visitors Bureaus
Travel Magazines

Attendees will be able to get the latest travel information, get
special travel packages and great deals from the very best travel
providers as well as win great prizes.

Tuesday – May 1, 2012 – Center on Halsted.  4-8pm.



Chicago Gay Play Weekend April 13-15

Gay Play Weekend at Center on Halsted

Features Enhanced Staged Readings of Four New Plays  and One New Musical!

Pride Films and Plays announces that five finalists have been named in the 2012 Great Gay Play and Musical Contest, as PFP continues to explore “What’s New and Who’s Next” in LGBT film and theater.  The finalists are:

  • At The Flash, by Sean Chandler and David Leeper, Woodland Hills, CA
  • Lost in History, by Adam Siegel, Maplewood, NJ
  • Hello Norma Jeane, by Dylan Costello, London, UK
  • Mr. Teddy, by George Smart, Quincy, MA
  • Under A Rainbow Flag, a new musical, by Leo Schwartz, Chicago, IL


All five finalists will be performed as enhanced staged readings in the Gay Play Weekend April 13 to 15 at Center on Halsted, 3656 North Halsted. The readings use some stage movement, sound, and costuming to create the world of the plays.

PFP fosters excellent writing for the stage and screen that speaks not only to the LGBT community, but is essential viewing for our friends, family, and co-workers,” says Executive Director David Zak. “And it is the range of these pieces that will make our Festival Weekend of staged readings extraordinary.”


Hello Norma Jeane, a comedy about Marilyn Monroe, and Mr. Teddy, a very provocative look at a long-standing three-way role-playing relationship, are both so entertaining and thought-provoking. At The Flash is destined to be a classic solo tour-de-force performance piece illuminating 50 years of gay history, while Lost in History is a beautifully personal story about parents, aging, and much more. And our first musical to be named a finalist, Under A Rainbow Flag, is a charming real-life story of a WWII naval corpsman who still lives in Evanston, Illinois.”

Thanks to the support of Center on Halsted, Gay Play Weekend is April 13 to 15 with the following schedule:


  • Friday, April 13, 7:30 – Lost in History, starring Artistic Ensemble Member Patrick Rybarczyk, and featuring Fred Tumas and Jerry Miller.


  • Saturday, April 14, 4:30 – Mr. Teddy, starring Artistic Ensemble Members Jude Hansen and Mark Smaglinski, and featuring Kyra Morris, Teddy Boone, Mark Boergers, and Alex Wolking.   


  • Saturday, April 14, 7:30 – Hello Norma Jeane, starring Artistic Ensemble members Kris Hyland, Michelle McKenzie-Voigt, Chad Ryan, and Kelli Walker, and featuring Rachel Payne and David Geinosky.      


  • Sunday, April 15, 1:30 – At The Flash, starring Artistic Ensemble member Lee Wichman.  
  • Sunday, April 15, 4:30 – Under A Rainbow Flag, starring Artistic Ensemble Members Tom Chiola and Kris Hyland, and featuring Bobby Arnold, Jon Landvick, Meghan Murphy, Colin Sphar and Nick Stockwell. Robert Ollis is Musical Director. 

Tickets for each reading are $10  at

For more information visit


Judy Shepard in Chicago for H.E.R. March 10th

Join Center on
for the Largest Women’s Event of the year!

 H.E.R. Day is an
afternoon of workshops dedicated to Women’s health, education, and
recreation. The day will start with a lunch sponsored by a Parent IVF,
and continue on into a diverse selection of workshop topics for female
identified individuals. Your $12 H.E.R. Day ticket
will give you access to all the days events, lunch sponsored by aParent
IVF and a special keynote address from activist and mother Judy Shepard
at 11am.

In October 1998,
Judy and Dennis Shepard lost their 21 year-old son, Matthew, to a murder
motivated by anti-gay hate. Matthew’s death moved many thousands of
people around the world to attend vigils and rallies in his memory.
Determined to prevent others from suffering their son’s fate, Judy and
Dennis decided to turn their grief into action and established the Matthew Shepard Foundation to carry on Matthew’s legacy.

In her continuing
role as board president, Judy  travels across the nation speaking to
audiences about what they can do as individuals and communities to make
this world a more accepting place for everyone, regardless of race,
religion, ethnicity, sex, gender identity and expression, or sexual

Don’t miss  HER  day – Center on Halsted, March 10th.

3656 N. Halsted Street  |  Chicago, IL 60613  |  773.472.6469



Monda Guerra Talks at Center on Halsted Dec 2

Fashion designer, reality TV star and public advocate Mondo Guerra is coming to Center on Halsted in honor of World AIDS Day.

He will be speaking Dec. 2 (the day before World AIDS Day) at 7pm in the 3rd floor theatre, followed by a meet and greet.

Mondo is perhaps most famous from Project Runway, where his designs won him critical praise and a spot as runner up on season 8. He also made headlines by coming out as HIV-positive on the runway, becoming one of the few reality TV stars in history to do so. 

Last year, in commemoration of World AIDS Day, he designed a limited edition of
T-shirts, one with a Day of the Dead sugar skull and one with a tree of
life. These shirts were sold on

For each shirt sold, $20 was donated to amfAR.In his statement to Fox News Latino for his motivations in doing this,
he said, ““The Day of the Dead is celebration of our loved ones who have
passed. When I was thinking of World Aids day I wanted to create
something very true to who I am, and what I know. Who I’ve known and
miss and those people in my life that still fight this disease. It’s
about love and continuation.”


Center on Halsted presents Mondo

7:00pm, December 2nd  

(Cash bar and light hors d’oeuvres 6:00pm – 7:00pm, event follows directly after)

3rd floor theatre

3656 N. Halsted Street

Free and open to the public

Seating is Limited!

Please RSVP to


Michael Leppen to Host Benefit Nov. 14th

Michael A. Leppen Hosts A Benefit for      Pride Films and Plays That Is
                                       SIMPLY SENSATIONAL!
Pride Films and Plays is pleased to announce that    Michael A. Leppen is hosting a benefit on November 14, 2011, featuring the best talent in Chicago in music, dance, comedy, and theater!
Tickets for the evening – which includes appetizers, a complimentary beer and wine bar, desserts, and the program – are $50 for VIP, and $25 for General Admission.     

VIP tickets include reserved seats, program recognition, and one ticket to PFP’s current comedy Love Sucks! (running through November 26). Tickets may be purchased online at  Brown Paper Tickets  or calling 1 800 838 3006.
The evening begins with cocktails and appetizers from 6:30 to 7:30, when the performance begins.
Desserts will be featured at intermission.   
Performers for the evening include singers Tom Michael, Natalie Myre, and Honey West, comedy from ThoraBurch, opera from Daina Fisher, dance from the Crush Dance Collective, performances by Pride Films and Plays Artistic Ensemble, and a scene from Rob Mersola’s Love Sucks!  For the most complete line-up, visit our Facebook Page.

Michael A. Leppen is a philanthropist, fund-raiser, and he has provided leadership and financial support for a large variety of nonprofit organizations in the Chicago area and elsewhere, many of them serving sexual-minority communities with regard to concerns such as HIV/AIDS, lesbian health, youth work and mass media. For years, Michael  has given leadership and financial support to a large variety of non-profit organizations in the Chicago area and elsewhere, many of them serving sexual-minority communities. His contributions have been made unselfishly, without regard to faction, and with a focus on the positive effects of actual work being done.

 Monday, November 14 · 6:30pm – 9:30pm
 Location Hoover-Leppen Theater of Center on Halsted
3656 N Halsted      Chicago, IL

Pride Films and Plays, based in Chicago, links an international network of writers with professionals working in film and theater.  
PFP fosters excellent writing for the stage and screen that speaks not only to the LGBT community, but is essential viewing for our friends, family, and co-workers.  Using stories with gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender characters or themes, Pride Films and Plays develops human stories that become a cultural bridge to understanding.  
Through readings, contests, classes, screenings, and full theater productions, PFP engages artists and audiences in the full developmental process needed to make great artistic experiences.
 For more information visit  



Adam Guerino…LGBT Homelessness to Comedy

Adam Guerino
is a writer in Chicago who works nationally as a stand-up comedian, mc/host, columnist, cartoonist and producer.
He created Queer Comedy at Zanies as well as Laugh Track at Sidetrack and Beauty Parlour: Comedy Never Looked So Gorgeous.

Adam has been featured in Timeout Chicago‘s “Joke Of The Week” and played at comedy clubs in Chicago and New York including ZaniesLincoln LodgeLakeshore Theater and The Edge Comedy Club in Chicago and Shock Therapy and Happy Hour at Bartini in New York City. 

As a producer, he has produced three seasons of the multimedia comedy show The Sarcastic Squad, two seasons of the performance and networking independent art event Art Haus, the sexy spectacle variety show Nightcaps as well as written and produced the full-length comedic play Mattress Matters and producing the short movies, I’m GayEverybody Is Having Sex But Me and Glitter Party.

He says, “I believe a good storyteller retells a journey and a great storyteller takes you on a journey with them. My first stories I told had little to do with my life—they were escapist and fantastical, sending me far away from my town of 4,000 people in Iowa. Beginning in my parents’ basement, I created epic sagas with a huge cast of action figures accompanied with character development, back stories and subplots. By middle school I was committing stories to paper with convoluted, over-wrought science fiction novellas.

I moved to Chicago for college and was a student for two years before dropping out and moving to Hawaii with no job or promise of a place to stay. Friends and family were confused as to how someone with so much passion would quit school, but I figured if I was going to have a hobby it might as well be an exciting one.

I lived in Hawaii for less than six months and in that time went from sleeping on the beach to working at one of the best restaurants in the world. I did interesting things and wrote the entire time

His situation fell apart in Hawaii. After moving back to Chicago within the year, he decided to have more stable, trustworthy living accommodations and moved into a college friend’s studio apartment for the last two months of her lease while she lived with her BF down the block. After a few weeks, the landlord thought Adam was party to an unofficial sublease and he was asked to leave. He didn’t tell any of his old college friends that he had no other place to stay and even told his BF at the time that he was going to go for a walk after a date and would stay up all night at diners, fill journals with stories on residential stoops or go home with strangers for a place to stay.

Within a month, Adam celebrated his 21st birthday asking people to buy him food instead of shots and still maintained his homelessness as a secret. Eventually, he began asking for help from friends–seeing if he could stay on their couches etc. After losing many friendships and his relationship because of his uncomfortable lack-of-living situation, Adam slept on a friends couch, found a job and has been gainfully employed and sheltered ever since. Although Adam mostly blames his homelessness on being stubborn, impulsive and stupid about money, he can appreciate the utter terror of homelessness and how it feels to be treated like a second class citizen because of unfortunate events.

COMEDY   saved him.You’re funny, you should do stand-up,” a friend of a friend said to me at a bar. I thanked her. “No, really, I run the comedy night here,” she insisted.

Within a week, I delivered thirty minutes of stand-up material. For those who aren’t familiar with stand-up, a comedian usually goes a year before collecting thirty minutes of material. My process of rapid writing and delivery became a staple of my style—sometimes writing material the day of a show to make sure my material was quirky, confident and raw. That confidence came from jumping head first into comedy.

Wednesday, August 31st –
Adam will perform at Center on Halsted!

We Are Halsted
is presented and hosted by Adam Guerino with the support of Center on Halsted and the Lakeview Safety and Inclusion Coalition and features music by gender bending belter Vallerie Dolls (Night of 100 Drag Queens), Manny Capozzi and Kyle Greer (Fatally Cool), comedy by Latina lesbian stand-up comedienne Gwen La Roka (Zanies, Amigas Latinas) and dance by a Jerri Blank celebrity impersonator.

We Are Halsted was created for everyone as a sensational, fabulous and affordable variety show. With $5 tickets, volunteer performers, raffle tickets and inexpensive donated beverages, We Are Halsted is a grass-roots fundraiser and an way to support our community’s homeless youth.

There are more than 15,000 + homeless and unaccompanied youth living in Chicago, and according to the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, more than 20% identify as LGBTQ.  It may come as a surprise to many that with so many youth facing these challenges there are only 189 shelter beds specifically provided for youth across the entire city.

We Are Halsted is a one-time special event created to bring our community together, to raise awareness about the challenges LGBTQ homeless youth face and to help support organizations doing such good work.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011     7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Center on Halsted (Hoover-Leppen Theatre)

7pm – 8pm – We Are Halsted pre-party

The We Are Halsted pre-party will take place outside on the rooftop overlooking the city. The pre-party will feature inexpensive donated cocktails and beer and will provide a casual setting for socializing and networking before the start of the show. This portion of the evening is limited to those who are 21+ years of age. IDs are required and will be checked at the door.


 Details  online



Center on Halsted Artist Reception Aug 19th

Join us for the opening of two exciting art galleries at Center on Halsted!  Brian Hofmeister will present his collection, titled “free/ not free,” in the second floor gallery with Ron Reason displaying his collection, titled “Everything’s Going (to turn out just fine),” in the third floor art gallery space.  Both shows will run from August 19th to September 27th.

EVENT DATE     Friday, August 19, 2011     7:00 PM – 9:30 PM   $5  donation

For Free / Not Free, (left,  by  Brian Hofmeister)  “the pieces I’ve created consist entirely of works on panel, utilizing the media of oil painting, screen print and collage. The intersection of the imagery in this work, specifically birds and either corsets, text or nature, reveal for me an allegory of my exploration of beauty and my attempt to capture it.”

Everything’s Going (to turn out just fine) Ron Reason (right)

The exhibit will give a glimpse into the unusual experience of art, music, survival, fashion and fun the two Chicago residents shared at the annual Burning Man festival. (This year’s installment of Burning Man, the first ever to sell out, begins one week after this exhibit’s opening.) The festival is a unique, impromptu experiment in creating art, culture, and community, whereby an ad-hoc “city” of 45,000 pops up for one week each year, inhabiting campers, tents, and RVs in harsh federal desert land in Nevada. The by-products of the interaction of daring souls from around the world are some of the most unusual art, music and fashion seen anywhere.  

Find out More online about the artists and the event!


2 Events at Center on Halsted August 8th & 10th

     H.E.A.L. Ourselves
Monday, August 8, 7:00pm Center on Halsted

Two great performances on one great night. ‘The Faggot Who Could Fly’ stars KOKUMO, a 22 year old intersex/trans woman of color who uses her life of sexual and mental abuse as catalysts for personal and communal change. KOKUMO’s story is about realizing her gender identity in relation to domestic violence and societal oppression.

And ‘No Gender Left Behind’ stars Rebecca King who was fired from a teaching position for being a transgender woman. The experience left her wondering what America is teaching its children – and its adults – about gender, conformity and being just a little bit different. 

Free community event. To reserve seats, RSVP by  email :

Self-Defense Class


starting August 10, 6:00pm
Center on Halsted

Gain the skills you need to recognize and avoid danger in this new self-defense class taught by internationally certified Taekwondo instructor Matt Cowell!  Learn how to protect yourself with basic hand and foot strikes, “See, Stand, or Breathe” techniques, and improvised weaponry.  Above all, empower yourself with skills that will improve your self-confidence, self-discipline, and self-respect. 

$10 community discount price. For more info,  email :


Center on Halsted ROOFTOP Alfresco Dining Returns July 13

Intimate dining experience on the Richard M. Daley Rooftop at Center on Halsted!
Led by celebrity chef Dan Smith of The Hearty Boys, sixteen burgeoning chefs enrolled in the Center’s Silver Fork Culinary Arts Program will present two weeks of fantastic four-course al fresco dining. Each week will focus on a different regional cuisine and feature dishes from guest celebrity chefs.

The Silver Fork Program at Center on Halsted is a twelve-week vocational training program for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and allied young adults and adults (ages 18+), especially those who are unemployed or underemployed. 

During each session, 16 participants receive hands-on training in the culinary arts and job readiness training. Graduates of the program leave with BASSET (Beverage and Alcohol Sellers Servers Education and Training) Certification and State of Illinois/City of Chicago Food Safety and Sanitation (FSS) certification, along with the knowledge and skills to be successful placed in the hospitality and restaurant industry. COH also provides case management services to participants to link them to needed resources, and support them through the training, job search, and employment process.

 The Dining on the Rooftop series is an opportunity for Silver Fork participants to showcase their new knowledge about fine cuisine and front-of-house dinner service. Potential employers will be in attendance at the dinners to discuss employment opportunities with the new graduates.

The Schedule:

Wednesday, July 13 and Thursday, July 14; 6PM

Italy Under the Stars

In our first week of the Dining on the Rooftop series, our young chefs will explore the savory and bold flavors developed over the centuries in the rolling hills of Italy. Expect refreshing appetizers, hearty pasta dishes, and tasty sweets from the birthplace of the Renaissance. Wine lovers should consider bringing a Chianti or a Cabernet Sauvignon to compliment tomato sauces. Beer lovers will prefer an American blonde ale or light lager for the evening.

Wednesday, July 20 and Thursday, July 21; 6PM

Une Nuit a Paris

In the second week of our series, our chefs will make Julie and Julia blush as they master the art of French cooking. Traditional and modern techniques will be employed to achieve the refined flavors of several regions of France. Guests should consider bringinga Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc to balance the French flavors, or sneak across the French border by pairing with a tasty Belgian beer.

Tickets are $25, and reservations can be made online at The rooftop will be open for seating at 6pm, and dinner will begin promptly at 6:30pm. “Dining on the Rooftop” is BYOB, and drinks will be chilled and filled throughout the night. Artisanal iced teas and water will also be served. Please be sure to note all food allergies and dietary restrictions on the online registration form to ensure a positive dining experience. Vegetarian dishes will be available.


H.E.R. Day (Health, Recreation, Education) LGBTQA Women June 11

H.E.R. Day (Health, Recreation, Education)
is a day-long symposium of exciting programs and workshops for LGBTQA women. 

Facilitators from Howard Brown Health Center, the Chicago Women’s Health Center, Northwestern University’s Department of Psychology, and other organizations will lead health seminars, a cooking class, and recreation classes like self-defense, yoga, and salsa throughout the day.

Keynote speech will be given by Jessica Halem, comedian, activist, and former  Executive Director of the Lesbian Community Cancer (now Care) Project. Jessica will also close the event with a special performance of her one-woman-show, “Bad Feminist” in the Hoover-Leppen Theater at 7pm.
$15 admission to H.E.R. Day (including the “Bad Feminist show) or $20 tickets to “Bad Feminist” at 7pm.

Seminars and workshops include:

“What I Learned from Cancer
,” Jessica Halem
Sex Ed 101 for L/B/T/Q Women, presented by the Chicago Women’s Health Center

Women, the Media, and Beauty Ideals, presented by Renee Engeln-Maddox, Ph.D. and senior lecturer at Northwestern University

Healthy Cooking Class and Demonstration, presented by Chef Toni Rivera

Tickle Your Fancy: Female Sexuality, Orgasm & What Toys Can Do for You! Presented by Searah Deysach from Early to Bed

Transgender Health, presented by Lois Bates from Howard Brown

Intersex People: What you Should Know and Why You Should Care! Presented by Dr. Veronica Drantz and intersex spokespersons Alex and Mugsie

Salsa dance, instructed by Heidi Landgraf, She-She Salsa Instructor at Edge Gallery

Self Defense, instructed by Matt Cowell of Cowell Martial Arts

Yoga, instructed by Kerri Noto of Tejas Yoga

In Vitro Fertilization for LGBT couples, presented by Colleen Wagner Coughlin, Laboratory Director and Embryologist of aParentIVF

Saturday, June 11, 10AM – 4PM
$15 admission to H.E.R. Day (including the “Bad Feminist show)
or $20 tickets to “Bad Feminist” at 7pm.


Chicago Bulls NBA Player Joakim Noah Shouts ‘Faggot’

WHOOPSIE!  Homophobic Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah was caught on camera shouting “f**k you, faggot” to a fan seated behind him at a Miami Heat basketball game tonight.
He used the slur while sitting on the bench after arguing a call with a referee. –  You know he will say “I’m Sorry…..” –  yeah, sorry for being caught on camera!

CBS Sports reports on the episode and the comparisons from some members of the media to last month’s incident with Kobe Bryant.

Noah then appeared to yell a string of profanities and finished with what appears to be the exact phrase that Bryant was fined for using. The only difference: Noah was not addressing one of the officials.

Immediately, NBA analysts and media members took to Twitter to predict that Noah would be fined by the NBA league office. “Because the NBA fined Kobe, you think they’ll have to fine Noah,” CNBC’s Darren Rovell tweeted. “But it’s really the luck of the draw whether you’re caught on TV.” “No question he said exactly what Kobe said,”’s Zach Lowe added. “Get that $100k ready, Joakim.”

Where does that $100,000  go exactly?  They should donate it to a LGBT rights group!

“I got caught up in the moment,” said Joakim Noah, his explanation for why he used an anti-gay slur during a game on Sunday. Mr. Noah apologized for the outburst, and that’s a start. But the fact that Mr. Noah immediately and instinctively turned to anti-gay language when he was angry and frustrated speaks to a larger, more dangerous undercurrent.  Hate language is more than a bad word – it has real, tangible consequences, and we must hold our role models accountable.

CENTER ON HALSTED said, “We have invited Mr. Noah and the Chicago Bulls organization to get involved in the work we do to provide young people, many of whom are homeless and the victims of hate violence,  a safe place to participate in sporting activities, where they can learn the value of teamwork, leadership, and healthy lifestyles.”


The Right Side of Forty…Increasing Happiness for Gay Men May 26th

New York-based psychotherapist, Bob Bergeron, LCSW, leads a 90-minute workshop on aging for gay men, at the Center on Halsted. May 26th.

 With over two decades of clinical experience working with gay men, Bergeron provides insight into how being gay impacts comfort with aging.  All ages of gay men welcome, and for gay men over forty – even decades over forty – this workshop is for you!

Right now is an unprecedented moment in our gay history.  Today: we are the first large group of openly gay men to deal with the issues of getting older.  How is that possible?  The earlier generation, the Stonewall men: were decimated in numbers by AIDS in the 80’s and early 90’s.

“Think about how monumental that makes what we are going through now.  I turn forty-nine this year and I cannot even imagine the added security and comfort I would possess with getting older if I saw packs of older gay men in their sixties, seventies and eighties.  If they were still around, it does not guarantee I would be inspired by how they were aging.  But because there would be so many examples of older gay men: it would assist my decisions building my own list of the do’s and the don’ts with getting older.  I am painfully aware that I am forced to figure out my version of success and failure being older without this help.”

The Right Side of Forty: The Complete Guide to Happiness for Gay Men at Midlife and Beyond is the first book on aging for the gay men of the twenty-first century that are struggling through this watershed moment.  With its release in January, my book mobilizes us for taking on our next crucial assignment: helping each other’s aging.  There’s a role for you to make a difference, my book is filled with thirteen chapters of options on how to get involved supporting other gay men while increasing your happiness about your own aging.”

This workshop is presented at Center on Halsted   3656 N Halsted, Chicago
Thursday, May 26, 2011 – 7:00 PM – 8:30PM         $5 suggested  donation
Get a sneak peak online.

Registration required –  call Zach Zimmerman, SAGE Special Projects Coordinator, at 773.472.6469 x 437


New Theater Classes from Center on Halsted

Announce New Co-operative
Venture in LGBT Acting
and Writing Classes
New theater classes will explore LGBT issues on stage. The acting class on Mondays is for working actors regardless of their sexual orientation who are interested in exploring great same-sex scenes in LGBT literature. The class on Tuesday is for LGBT writers, performers, and community members interested in creating performance pieces that tell their own story. The classes are a part of Center on Halsted’s ActOUT program
Honesty and Authenticity in Same-Sex Scene Study

This class is for working actors of all ages and types regardless of their sexual orientation who are interested in exploring great same-sex scenes from both classic and new LGBT theater.  Work for honesty and authenticity through great scenes from The Children’s Hour, Boys in the Band, Angels in America, and great contemporary scripts. The cost is $300 for an 8-week session that runs from Monday, April 18 to Monday, June 6, from 6:30 to 9 pm.  The class will culminate in a free, open performance on Monday, June 13 in the Hoover-Leppen Theater at Center on Halsted. The class is taught by PFP’s Executive Director David Zak, and will have a maximum of 12 students.

Tell Your Own Story And Shape It For Performance

This class is for LGBT performers, writers, and community members who are interested in creating theatrical work meant for performance. These works could be audition-length or longer works, and could be performed by the author or another performer. Students will work on developing their own written material in their unique “voice,” and then shape it for performance. The cost is $300 for an 8-week session that runs from Tuesday, April 19 through Tuesday, June 7, from 6:30 to 9 pm. The class will culminate in a free, open performance on Monday, June 13 in the Hoover-Leppen Theater at Center on Halsted. The class is taught by PFP’s Executive Director David Zak, and will have a maximum of 14 students.
All classes are at Center on Halsted, 3656 N Halsted.  

Register on line.    For further information email      PrideClasses  @


Center on Halsted Raises $50,000 from Oscars Party

people watched
 the Oscars this year!

Here in Chicago 300+ patrons raised $50,000 for Center on Halsted  programs and services, at their annual Oscar Extravaganza!

It was a first class production with Las Vegas style showgirls, televisions everywhere, delicious foods and drinks galore.

The rooftop at The Center was enclosed and heated to provide a very cool lounge type room. And a wonderful silent auction helped raise a lot of money!

Chicago has sure come a long way! 

Starting with Gay Horizons, founded in 1973 as a volunteer-run telephone helpline and meeting place for gays and lesbians, growing into The Center on Halsted, 175,000 square feet offering an abundance of services to the LGBT community . It is a world-class center we should be very proud of, and support any way we can.





May 14th  with  Wanda Sykes and 
Linda Eder at the Harris Theater.

Sure to be a great evening!


What Exactly Does the Center on Halsted Do?

I am really amazed when I talk to friends here in Chicago who really have no idea of what goes on at the CENTER ON HALSTED . They just think it’s a place to hang out and have no idea of what the Center has to offer!

Everyone should sign up for their monthy newsletter . And from time to time, we’ll provide a snapshot of some of the months highlights. There really is something here for everyone!

For March –

“When Romeo Was A Woman,” a presentation of the Out at CHM series
Thursday, March 10, Cocktails at 5:30 p.m. event at 6:30 p.m.
$12/ $10 students/CHM members

Charlotte Cushman, 1816-1876, was the nineteenth century’s most famous cross-dressing and woman-loving actress. Her performance of Shakespeare’s star-crossed lover was legendary, and she wowed male and female audiences alike at local theaters, like McVicker’s in Chicago, during her American tours. Join cultural historian Lisa Merrill for a behind-the-scenes look at how spectators and critics talked and wrote about sexuality on stage. Jill Austin, museum curator, will begin the program with a brief introduction to LGBT-related life and themes in mid-19th-century Chicago. About Face Theatre Artistic Director Bonnie Metzgar and the Laramie Project’s co-author Leigh Fondakowski will join the discussion to talk about how gender-bending pioneers continue to impact our stages.


Speed Dating for Men 21+

 Thursday, March 10, 7PM       $12 at the door
Looking to date, make friends or to meet that special someone? It’s time for some real-time, fun-time speed dating at Center on Halsted. You will have an opportunity to meet everyone and leave with contact information for your matches! Cash bar opens at 6:45 PM.

Civil Unions: What You Need to Know 
a conversation with Atty. Ray Koenig
Tuesday, March 15, 6:30PM FREE

Beginning this summer, Illinois will offer civil unions to same-sex couples. Hear from legal expert Ray Koenig about what this will mean for you—whether you have partnership arrangements or not.
Ray J. Koenig III, is a member in Clark Hill’s Litigation Practice Group in its Chicago office. He practices in the areas of probate litigation, trust litigation, fiduciary litigation, elder law and estate planning. Ray has represented individuals, families, financial institutions, medical institutions, and governmental organizations in all areas of his practice. Ray has extensive trial, appellate and mediation experience in state and federal courts.

 Ray is frequently appointed Guardian Ad Litem and defense counsel by judges in guardianship cases, and has been appointed Special Administrator in probate matters. Ray has also been appointed Special Assistant Attorney General in numerous matters. Ray served on a task force formed by the Commissioner of the City of Chicago Department on Aging to develop and draft legislation to significantly revise the Illinois Elder Abuse and Neglect Act.

Introduction to PowerPoint
Begins Thursday, March 17, 10AM (3-week series)        $15. Sliding scale available.
Call (773) 661-0730 to register. Pre-registration required.
This class is designed for the beginning PowerPoint user and includes: creating a presentation, working with text in slides, working with slides, using design templates, different presentation views, and printing presentations.


SAGE Early Bird Jazz Supper Club

Thursday, March 17, 6PM         FREE. Pre-registration required.
Interested in a night of fine dining, smooth live jazz, and apple martinis –and getting home by 10pm? Want an alternative to your traditional St. Patty’s Day celebration? Then come on out for the SAGE Early Bird Jazz Supper Club. Bring a date, rendezvous, or live on the edge and meet someone new! Come for the sumptuous cuisine prepared by Center on Halsted’s “What’s Cookin’” program and stay for our three sassy song stylists and apple martinis. Space limited to 36.

Bisexual Movie Night

Monday, March 21, 7PM (3rd Mondays)

A casual, FREE movie night with popcorn and refreshments.

SAGE Women’s Creative Writing

Thursday, March 24, 6PM (Thursdays weekly)

Experienced facilitator from Northwestern University will guide the group through expressions of self through poetry, fiction, and journal writing. Class is limited to 15; please call or e-mail (773) 472-6469 to register.

Speed Dating for Women 21+
Thursday, March 24, 7PM       $12 at the door
Looking to date, make friends or to meet that special someone? It’s time for some real-time, fun-time speed dating at Center on Halsted. You will have an opportunity to meet everyone and leave with contact information for your matches! Cash bar opens at 6:45 PM.

Legal Clinic at Center on Halsted
Tuesdays 4PM-7PM and Wednesdays 6PM-8PM   
(please call to make an appointment)

Center on Halsted’s free legal clinic allows LGBT and Ally people to speak one-on-one with a licensed attorney about their specific legal concern and receive appropriate information and referral options. There is no fee for this service. For more information or to make an appointment, please contact 773.472.6469, ext. 290.

This is just a small glimpse into the Center on Halsted. Every day more than 1,000 visitors, participants and clients walk through the doors of Center on Halsted. Come experience the richness of their  theatre, gallery exhibits and cultural programs. Take a class in  the Computer Technology Center or use the free wi-fi throughout the building. Be a part of The Center .



Center on Halsted’s Oscar Party Coming February 27th


Experience The Center like never before as they transform Center on Halsted into Chicago’s premiere Oscar Night hot spot.

Walk the Red Carpet and browse  auction items before lounging in the heated rooftop tent.

Enjoy cocktails and a buffet with friends while the Academy Awards stream live in their private theater and on monitors throughout the third floor.

Attire is fun & fabulous!

6pm: Red Carpet Pre-Show & Silent Auction

7pm: Academy Awards Telecast

Get your tickets for this fabulous annual party !

 Producer Tickets: $125 each.
Includes reserved cabaret seating in the theater and open bar table service throughout the night.
Cabaret tables can accommodate 4 guests each. Call Jacob Kosior, Director of Special Events, at 773.661.0788 for seating options if your guests are purchasing their tickets separately or require other accommodations.

Director Tickets: $75 each.
Includes Red Carpet access, buffet and open bar, with seating and viewing options throughout the third floor

Seating is limited.
Garage parking is available at 808 W. Addison as is street parking.
Parking will NOT be available in the underground Whole Foods parking facility.

Best Gay


Lesbian Comic Judy Gold in Chicago January 30th

Judy Gold
is an Emmy Award-winning actress, producer and comedienne whose credits include The Rosie O’Donnell Show, The View, The Joy Behar Show and her own hit Off-Broadway production, “25 Questions for a Jewish Mother.”

She can regularly be seen on Comedy Central, LOGO and HBO with her many comedy specials. Judy is currently starring in the Off-Broadway run of “Love, Loss, and What I Wore” and touring for her new stand-up show, “It’s Judy’s Show – My Life As A Sitcom.”

The 6’3″ lesbian got teased a lot in school, she admits,”Six foot three plus marching band equals unpopular. I ended up really kind of hating high school. I was teased incessantly, but I knew deep down inside, I was really cool!”

“I moved to NYC (my dream)… …and lived with a marijuana addicted opera singer and his cat. I started taking acting classes and got a job working at a company that sold ad space on behalf of military base newspapers. It was a riveting job. I can’t believe I ever left.

I met this girl named Sharon there and we became very close friends. After telling Sharon several times how I had done stand-up (I was trying to be cool), she said, “Either do it, or don’t talk about it anymore.” She might regret that she said that because she definitely created a monster. I started doing open mics. I would go onstage anywhere that they did stand-up and try to get on.”
“Performing at  clubs all over the country was exhausting and lonely, but there’s really no other way if you want to be a stand-up.”
Judy confessed.  “TV shows followed, then my first regular part on a sitcom, living in LA, an HBO special, a Cable Ace Award, a child, back to NYC, writing and producing, 2 Emmy awards, another child, and lots more stand-up and TV. I’m a lucky gal!”

Judy is in town this Sunday January 30th  7pm 
at the
Center on Halsted !       3656 N Halsted

$40 tickets can be purchased online or at the door. 
Seating is limited.

Garage parking is available at 808 W. Addison as is street parking.
 For more information,  call 773.472.6469 ext. 252.           Cash bar available.

Opening Act: Betty and Wilma: One Night Only!
Betty and Wilma are legendary recording artists, Broadway stars, and best friends. This is the very first time they’ve ever been on stage together, and possibly the last. This homage to stage divas was developed for the Annoyance Theatre’s Triple Feature Series. Starring Kellen Alexander and Wes Perry. Directed by Christina Boucher. Music by Charles Worth. Accompanied by Andrew Sinko.


Best Gay


HomeSharing Program at Center on Halsted – Innovative Program for Aging LGBT Community

Center on Halsted has
launched nation’s first
LGBT homesharing program!

From Beginner’s French to twice-weekly lunches, SAGE Center on Halsted  has a wide variety of programs and services for individuals 55 and older.

A $475,000 federal grant is allowing SAGE to carry out a number of special projects. From a groundbreaking survey of Chicagoland LGBT older adults to a new film on HIV prevention to exciting day trips, it’s a pretty special time to become involved with SAGE!

But even beyond SAGE, officials at the Center on Halsted recently unveiled the nation’s first LGBT homesharing program, matching up LGBT seniors with younger renters who can help with chores and other support services in exchange for reduced rent.

For a growing number of persons faced with losing their independence and struggling to keep housing costs within their budget, shared housing is an affordable and viable alternative. Shared housing offers companionship, affordable housing, security, mutual support and much more.

“I truly believe in this program,” said Britta Larson, homesharing manager at the Center. “We really have put a lot of time and effort into making sure this program is the very best it can be.”

DID YOU KNOW?  LGBT senior adults, are twice as likely to be single and three to four times more likely to be without children than their heterosexual counterparts? That lack of a family support makes it more difficult for LGBT seniors to continue living independently as they age, Larson said.

“Aging for the LGBT community is particularly challenging,” Larson said. “This community is facing financial hardships.”

Being lonely is hard for everybody, regardless of the gender or orientation. Loneliness is  a  huge problem for many LGBT seniors – a Chicago-based needs assessment survey ranked isolation as the No. 1 concern of LGBT older adults.

The Center’s role, which is provided free of charge, is to help match up potential applicants with each other.

Homesharing applicants who wish to rent space
must have a minimum of two bedrooms in their apartment, condominium or home.

Applicants who want to rent
must have an income of at least $750 per month and be willing to assist with household tasks.

The extent of the duties of the renters is negotiated between the two parties and will vary depending on the needs of the LGBT senior and other factors. Some seniors may need more help with household tasks than others, while some may just be looking for a few extra dollars a month to help pay off mortgages or other bills.

Homesharing has become increasingly popular but Larson said this is the first formal homesharing program in the U.S. to target LGBT seniors. It matches up applicants who wish to take on a renter with someone who is willing to live with an older adult and take on some household tasks.

The Center’s role, which is provided free of charge, is to help match up potential applicants with each other, thoroughly screen all applicants through reference checks and background checks and to provide ongoing support the homesharing matches.

“Each applicant has a really strong role in who they’re matched with,” Larson said. “There will be an agreement worked out between the two parties talking about responsibilities and things like shared space.”

For information on SAGE and the homesharing program go to  or call 773-472-6469


Older Adults – Gay and LGBT Seniors and Aging Research Being Done in Chicago


Face it!

Have you thought about it?

While many older adults suffer from health issues stemming from stig­ma, isolation and unequal treatment, aging dilemmas for gay men are even compounded by other than just medical issues.

Citing a 2009 study, a report noted that  lesbian couples’ Social Security benefits are typically 31.5 percent smaller and gay couples’ benefits are 17.8 percent smaller than are those of heterosexual couples.

Family members provide about 80 percent of long-term care in the United States, but that’s not the case with LGBT elders, since they are more likely to be single, childless and estranged from their biological families, said the report.

That’s just the beginning of the cycle of discrimination. The stunning report cited “official policies, laws and institutional regulations” that offer same-sex partners few of the resources afforded to spouses and biological family members.


Center on Halsted  and AIDS Community Research Initiative of America (ACRIA ) are doing a survey to collect data on the health and psychosocial needs of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender older adults who live in Chicago.  This is only the 2nd survey of its kind to ever be done and the first in the Midwest.
Participants must be age 50 and over and identify as LGBT.   The survey  takes 45 minutes to complete and the participant will receive a $25.00 debit card as a “Thank you”.  All information is anonymous and confidential.  

THEY NEED PEOPLE NOW! The survey deadline  is  January 28th. PLEASE, if you are over 50, call for an appointment. It would be a HUGE HELP for the COH.
Researchers suggests LGBT older adults are more likely to rely on friends and family of choice than on more traditional caregivers such as family members and children.  As the family of choice network ages, there may be more of a reliance on formal support systems that may not be prepare to meet LGBT needs.
For those interested in taking the survey, please contact Betty at 1(773)472-6469 ext 448 or  to set up an appointment.

Best Gay


Civil Union Community Forum This Thursday at Center on Halsted

The second EQIL
Civil Union Community Forum
will be held this Thursday,
December 16 at 6:00pm
at Center on Halsted.

EQIL  CEO Bernard Cherkasov and Director of Public Policy Rick Garcia will be leading the discussion and question-and-answer session.

What: EQIL Civil Union Community Forum

When: Thursday, December 16 at 6:00pm

Where: Center on Halsted
(3656 N. Halsted Street–3rd floor auditorium)

If you have any questions,
please  call 773-477-7173.

We look forward to seeing you on Thursday!

*P.S. To celebrate the passage of the civil union bill, community forum attendees will receive discounted access (just $10) to Alien Queen, Scooty & JoJo’s audacious parody of Hollywood’s most terrifying sci-fi franchise, complete with enormous alien puppets, a  multi-talented genderbending cast, a laser light show, and a four-piece rock band covering the legendary songs of Queen. Alien Queen will take place at Circuit Nightclub, opposite Center on Halsted, at 7:30pm on Thursday.



Nathan Manske and I’m From Driftwood Arrive in Chicago

He’s HERE!   Nathan Manske has arrived in Chicago!

Nathan Manske is the creator and editor of the gay, true-stories and very popular blog I’m From Driftwood  . He is indeed from Driftwood, Texas, but has lived in Brooklyn, New York since 2003.

LGBT people have been submitting their stories online to Nathan for a couple years now. This year, he decided to go on the road, collecting more video stories, for a documentary. Chicago is on his stops this week, then off to Michigan!

Produced under his newly founded company, Crush Deviant Media, Marquise Lee serves as director and editor of the I’m From Driftwood original Video Stories.

MONDAY  November 22, they will be at the Center on Halsted from 5 – 6:30pm.

TUESDAY, November 23rd, they will be at Roscoes at 11pm hosting a little fundraiser to raise additional funds for the documentary.

Come out and show them some love!


Great Gay Screenplay Contest This Weekend November 20-21

This is it!

The Finale Weekend of the Great Gay Screenplay Contest is here, and we hope you will be a part of it!

Please join us at the Hoover Leppen Theater at Center on Halsted on November 20 and 21 as we present what our judges from across the country think are five of the freshest GBLT works submitted to us this year, in staged readings with a great cast directed by Artistic Associate John Nasca.

You can meet the writers, and vote for our “Audience Favorite” award.  The winner of the contest will be announced after Sundays performance.

Showtimes are 5 pm Saturday and 3 pm on Sunday. You don’t want to miss it!

Tickets are $10 for each program, or $15 for the whole weekend. Tickets can be purchased through Brown Paper Tickets , or in person at the Center on Halsted  one hour before each show time.

Thanks for supporting these new writers and their exciting new works!

David Zak
Executive Director
Pride Films and Plays


BEHIV’s 5th Annual Exhibition of Artwork – Opens November 19

BEHIV’s 5th Annual Exhibition of Artwork
 from Art Therapy Clients and Supportive Artists

Better Existence with HIV (BEHIV ) will host its fifth annual exhibition of artwork created by clients in its Art Therapy program, as well as supportive community artists, at the Center on Halsted, 3656 N. Halsted, from November 19 through January 4. 

The exhibition will be preceded by a fundraising reception on November 19,
from 6:00-7:30pm, in the Center’s Irving Harris Family Foundation Reception Hall. 

Tickets to the reception can be purchased on BEHIV’s website  

The exhibition itself is free to the public.

Art Therapy helps people explore issues related to HIV/AIDS, assisting them in coping with a range of emotions. Permission to create and learning to respect one’s own creations are cornerstones of the program. Verbal expression has its limitations, but acquiring a visual language offers powerful energy for change and healing.  Most of BEHIV’s clients have no formal art training, but their ability to work through difficult emotional issues through their art helps them lead more productive, healthier lives.
In the past, Art Therapy was funded by federal Ryan White CARE Act funds, but Art Therapy funding has been eliminated from that program.  BEHIV is committed to continuing the beneficial service and hosts the exhibition and reception annually to support the program, with reception proceeds and art sales benefiting the program. 

Sponsors of the 2010 exhibition (to date) include, Boi Magazine, Canon Solutions, Center on Halsted, Chicago Department of Public Health,, GRAB Magazine,, Northwest Speech and Hearing Center, Tibotec Therapeutics.

BEHIV annually educates more than 5,000 young people throughout Chicagoland about how to protect themselves, because HIV increasingly affects our youth houses more than 190 men, women and children impacted by HIV, who might otherwise be homeless
delivers case management, mental health counseling, art therapy and massage therapy services to more than 300 adults who need a lifeline to supportive services provides approximately 1,000 free HIV and sexually transmitted infection tests to our most vulnerable populations.

Best Gay


Dancing on the Deck III This Weekend, October 2nd!

As Summer fades and Autumn rolls in,
 Join us aboard the fabulous Kanan Cruise Ship!

We’ll depart from Navy Pier for a four-hour cruise along the Chicago Skyline. There will be an open bar, buffet, DJ and dance floor. Featuring DJ Alexis Rivera and DJ TEO. Enjoy live entertainment from some of Halsted Street’s most colorful personalities punctuates the evening, along with hot sailor boy dancers and sexy mermaids.

Saturday, October 2, 2010 – 9:00 PM – 1am     Navy Pier

*$150 tickets are available online at  or from Circuit Night Club or Rehab, a Cocktail Café, both at 3641 N. Halsted Street after 5pm daily.


*Pre-boarding check-in begins at 8:30pm on Navy Pier at the Kanan Cruise Ship on Saturday, October 2nd. Passengers may begin boarding the vessel at 9:00pm with a prompt departure time of 9:30pm. The Kanan will return to Navy Pier at 1:00am. Passengers must be at least 21 years of age with proper identification. This is a rain or shine event, no refunds.