World AIDS DAY

December 1 of every year is World AIDS Day.

It is an occasion to look back at the horrors of the early days of the HIV epidemic, when systems ignored and failed some of society’s most vulnerable and marginalized people just when they needed help the most. Whole communities of young gay men were killed, and communities of color suffered huge losses, as well. This day honors the memories of people that some in society let die alone and almost forgotten. Every World AIDS Day, we make sure they are not forgotten.

It’s also an occasion to look back with pride on what humans can accomplish when we work together towards a common good. There still is no proper “cure” that can be widely practiced, but a few patients seem to have been permanently “cured” through extreme experimental treatments. There is still no vaccine, after four decades of trying. But there is effective and constantly-improving antiretroviral therapy that can extend the lifespan of an infected person to generally match the lifespan of the general population. And Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) is now widely available to help HIV- individuals stay that way.

There is still work to do: it’s a near-constant political fight to maintain and expand the funding necessary to accomplish the health and quality-of-life objectives that define a successful response to HIV in communities. Too many people still don’t have access to the medicines they need, or to housing resources—or, they don’t know that such resources are available to them. 

It used to be said that if the cure for HIV were a glass of clean water, there would be places on earth we couldn’t reach everyone with that cure. So World AIDS Day is also an opportunity to reflect on the other challenges that accompany and worsen HIV: hunger, lack of safe drinking water, insufficient housing, lack of sex education. All this and more goes into the fight against AIDS, but in 40 years of battling this virus, humanity has never been better-positioned to finally win that fight than right now.

On this World AIDS Day, we at To Proudly Go honor the lives of those who lost the fight, we celebrate the good health of those thriving on effective antiviral treatment, and we gratefully give credit to the activists, healthcare workers, researchers, and others who worked so hard to bring us to this point.

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To Proudly Go Nominated by Broadway World for Best Recurring Show

We are very excited to announce our 2022 Broadway World Cabaret Awards nomination for Best Open-Mic, Variety or Recurring Show for To Proudly Go’s #Star Trek Viewing Parties and Fundraiser Benefiting shows at 6pm Saturdays at the legendary Barracuda Lounge in New York City.

Since August 2021, To Proudly Go has been dedicated to creating a safe and supportive space for the LGBTQIAplus community to enjoy each of the five new Star Trek series’ and The Orville. Each week has been dedicated to supporting important community causes and organizations, raising close to $6000 collectively for 7 different charities to-date.  

Since the beginning, each show has been filled with Star Trek trivia, 2-4-1 drinks, prizes and giveaways, To Proudly Go merchandise available for purchase and special Star Trek themed drag performances by Trek’tastic drag performers Heather Wood, Flippe Kikee, Stella D’oro, Godiva Romance, Kailee Rose, and guest drag queens Jackie Cox from RuPaul’s Drag Race, Junior Mintt and others, and live performances by Lawrence Neals, Adam Sarette and more!

Thank you to all the performers and volunteers who have helped make this show a Trek’tastic success! Please consider voting for us in the 2022 Broadway World Cabaret Awards nomination for Best Open-Mic, Variety or Recurring Show and joining us 6pm Saturday!

Vote Here

Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations

These words are what we celebrate when we enter that bar, when we stand on that stage, when we lift each other up. Our queer spaces are our sanctuaries, and we stand with Colorado Springs and Club Q in the wake of this senseless, violent attack on our community.

Maybe you didn’t go to Club Q on Saturday because you had a silly argument; maybe, across the country, you were with us at Barracuda but are now struggling to hold your head high again and are afraid of being in our sacrosanct places. We will be here to help you heal.

We stand for diversity, for hope, for love—and our hearts are with you.

If you or anyone you know is struggling in the aftermath of this hate crime, there are people who can help. Consider calling The Trevor Project at 866-488-7386, call 988 for the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline, or go to your nearest emergency room.

We can make the world a better place.

Author:

Sonyl Nagale

Chief Technology Officer

To Proudly Go

Join To Proudly Go the Finale of Lower Decks and the Premiere of Prodigy

Join us for the season 3 finale of Star Trek Lower Decks and the Season 2 Premiere of Star Trek Prodigy 6pm Saturday, October 29 at Barracuda Lounge!

Join the To Proudly Go crew for the season 3 finale of Star Trek Lower Decks and the season 2 premiere of Star Trek Prodigy! Hosted by Heather Wood, Flippe Kikee and Godiva Romance with DJ T.K. This Trek’tacular night will feature costume contest with the winner recieving free drinks and a monthly MTA metro card, special Star Trek themed drag performances, 2-4-1 drinks, and more! Help us support Impac+NYC, a social support community of queer, gay, bi, and trans men living with HIV.

Be sure to join us for a good cause at the legendary Barracuda Lounge Star Trek: Prodigy every Saturday at 6pm!

Hosted by Heather Wood, Flippe Kikee, and Godiva Romance, with DJ Cameron Cole. These Trek’tastic events will be filled with Star Trek Trivia games, special Star Trek themed drag performances, special guests, 2-4-1 drinks, fabulous Star Trek prizes, and merchandise. Each viewing party is dedicated to supporting To Proudly Go’s mission of celebrating SciFi, promoting the LGBTQIAplus community and supporting important community causes and organizations. Come support a good cause!

About Impac+ NYC

Impac+ NYC is a social support community of queer, gay, bi, and trans men living with HIV living in New York together. Formed in 2009, Impac+NYC has expanded to include activities like dinners, brunches, volunteer activities, fundraisers, picnics, arts walks, beach trips, river cruises, house mixers, and periodic trips to other cities. Learn more at: www.impacnyc.org

Join To Proudly Go for Star Trek Lower Decks Season 3

To Proudly Go invites you to join us at the legendary Barracuda Lounge starting August 20 for our Star Trek: Lower Decks Season 3 kick-off even with new episode viewings each and every Saturday starting August 27th at 6pm.

Hosted by Heather Wood, Flippe Kikee, Godiva Romance and special guests, with DJ TK. These Trek’tastic events will be filled with Star Trek Trivia games, special Star Trek themed drag performances, special guests, 2-4-1 drinks, fabulous Star Trek prizes, and merchandise. Each viewing party is dedicated to supporting Impac+NYC which is a social support community of queer, gay, bi, and trans men living with HIV living in New York. Come support a good cause!

About Impac+NYC
Impac+ NYC is a social support community of queer, gay, bi, and trans men living with HIV living in New York together. Formed in 2009, Impac+NYC has expanded to include activities like dinners, brunches, volunteer activities, fundraisers, picnics, arts walks, beach trips, river cruises, house mixers, and periodic trips to other cities. Learn more at: www.impacnyc.org.

About To Proudly Go
To Proudly Go is a 501c3 nonprofit organization formed for the purposes of creating safe and supportive spaces that celebrates science fiction, promotes the LGBTQIA+ community and partners with important community causes to empower and foster a kinder and better world.

Join To Proudly Go at Flame Con!

Join the To Proudly Go crew for its ‘Live Proud and Prosper’ drag show at 4:30pm, Saturday, August 20th on the main stage at Flame Con held at the Times Square Sheraton. ‘Live Proud and Prosper’ features NYC drag queens Heather Wood, Flippe Kikee and Godiva Romance! This Trek’tastic event will showcase the very best of Star Trek themed cosplay drag in NYC. Tickets are available for Flame Con here.

What is Flame Con?

Flame Con is the world’s largest queer comic con created by Geeks OUT. Flame Con features a two-day comics, arts and entertainment expo, showcasing creators and special guests from all corners of the LGBTQ fandom. It features thoughtful discussions, exclusive performances, screenings, cosplay and more! Learn more about Flame Con and the 2022 event schedule here.

About Geeks OUT

Geeks OUT is a 501(c)(3) non-profit that seeks to rally, promote, and empower the queer geek community. Learn more here.

Remembering Nichelle Nichols

As you’ve surely heard by now, the great Nichelle Nichols has died. 

We celebrated what would turn out to be the last birthday of an incredible woman here, in this space, just about eight months ago. She was a pioneer, a great talent, and a trailblazer in human history. 

Her family released this statement yesterday:

Dear Friends, Fans, Colleagues, World,

I regret to inform you that a great light in the firmament no longer shines for us as it has for so many years.

Last night, my mother, Nichelle Nichols, succumbed to natural causes and passed away. Her light, however, like the ancient galaxies now being seen for the first time, will remain for us and future generations to enjoy, learn from, and draw inspiration.

Hers was a life well lived and as such a model for us all.

I, and the rest of our family, would appreciate your patience and forbearance as we grieve her loss until we can recover sufficiently to speak further. Her services will be for family members and the closest of her friends and we request that her and our privacy be respected.

Live Long and Prosper”

Kyle Johnson

Nichelle made a place in history not just for herself, but for the countless people who have benefited from and will benefit from the life she lived and the trails she blazed. She did not inherit that place in history—she made it. And she shared it, and she paid it forward, and she changed the trajectory of the human experience through the way she chose to live her life. While rightly mourning her passing, we at To Proudly Go also celebrate her extraordinary life.

Please join us for extra special tribute to the legendary Nichelle Nichols with a special viewing of Woman In Motion and fundraiser for the NAACP at season finale of The Orville: New Horizons Viewing Party 6pm Saturday, August 6 at Barracuda Lounge. Click here for complete event details.

Pride Month: Looking Back, Looking Forward

As Pride Month comes to an end and we kick off the summer travel and party season, To Proudly Go has a lot to celebrate: a beautiful day marching in Brooklyn Pride, led by the extraordinary Flippe Kikee; thousands of dollars raised to uplift vulnerable members of the queer community; a stable and established social home for nerdfolk to connect every Saturday at Baraccuda; and of course a thriving and growing community of people drawn together by our love of Trek and our membership in (or allyship of) the LGBTQ+ community.

With so much to celebrate, it does also seem appropriate to reflect on what Pride really means, and the work that lies ahead.

Each year, we celebrate LGBTQ+ identity for the month of June, and we mark the advances in equality that have expanded the rights everyone deserves: to be who they are, to marry who they love, and to receive the benefits afforded to everyone else. But it’s important to remember that the movement to secure our rights started with a riot after prolonged and regular harassment of gay people by the authorities. And in so many ways it felt like the work was done.

But we live in a dynamic and changing world, and there are forces arrayed against the values of the majority of Americans—forces which seek to, and have already succeeded in doing so, take away personal freedoms from the American people.

This year, with the reversal of Roe v. Wade two days before the seventh anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Obergefell v. Hodges decision to codify marriage equality, we very likely have another time of struggle ahead of us.

The radical court has already revoked a woman’s right to choose, and it is nearly certain that they will attack equal marriage rights in the next year. Some who sit on the Court have signaled that they also intend to pursue the re-criminalization of gay sex of any kind.

As we look back with pride on all we accomplished, it is important to prepare ourselves for the challenges to come. Maintaining our rights, and reestablishing a woman’s right to whatever healthcare she needs, will not be easy. We will need to show up for one another and for the people who will come after us. We will need to show up at the voting booth, and at protests, and in the inboxes of our elected officials. And we’ll need to show up however we can to spread the messages of love and equality under the law in places outside of our gayborhoods.

The statehouses outside of New York and California, and local elections, will be critical not only to the continuation of LGBTQ+ rights, but to the restoration of women’s healthcare rights, and possibly to the survival of democracy itself.

Looking back on Pride month, there is much to be truly proud of. But looking forward, we may find ourselves needing to tap into the defiant spirit of previous generations of LGBTQ+ people–the people who had to fight to get us here. 

We can take a moment and remember that Pride isn’t just a month. Pride isn’t only a parade. It’s a movement, a march through time, and the journey comes with ups but also with downs. Some downs are probably coming our way.

But we’re in this together, and our community has won against all odds many times before.

Trekkies: Engage!

🖖🏳️‍🌈🖖🏳️‍🌈🖖🏳️‍🌈

Join To Proudly Go Online for Pride!

To Proudly Go is taking its Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Viewing Party online for a one night only event hosted by Heather Wood and Flippe Kikee! Join us 7pm Saturday, June 25 at www.snwprideshow.torproudlygo.org for a Trek’tastic pride event featuring fabulous Star Trek themed drag performances aimed at benefiting Pop Culture Hero Coalition!

About Pop Culture Hero Coalition

Founded in 2013, Pop Culture Hero Coalition (PCHC) provides mental health and social emotional learning programs for children, teens, and adults. They work to end oppression in all its forms, including bullying, racism, misogyny, LGBTQIA+ bullying, and cyber bullying. By using evidence-based psychology in combination with relatable stories and characters, they work to stransform struggles into strenghts. Learn more at: www.popculturehero.org

About To Proudly Go

To Proudly Go is a 501c3 nonprofit organization formed for the purposes of creating safe and supportive spaces that celebrates science fiction, promotes the LGBTQIA+ community and partners with important community causes to empower and foster a kinder and better world.

🏳️‍🌈🖖🏳️‍🌈

March with To Proudly Go on June 11th

Join the To Proudly Go Crew for the Brooklyn Pride March on Saturday, June 11, 2022!

All interested individuals must fill out an interest form to walk in the Brooklyn Pride March with the To Proudly Go crew on June 11. 

Interest form link:

www.bkpridemarchsignup.toproudlygo.org

Schedule:

We will meet at St. John’s Place between 5th and 6th Avenue (more details to come) at 5:30pm, please be there on time. The parade will start at 7:00pm SHARP.

Questions:

Do you have questions about marching with To Proudly Go? Please contact Luke.Messina@toproudlygo.org

***Due to restrictions, we may not be able to accommodate everyone. We will reach out by June 5th to confirm marchers. Looking forward to an amazing march!!***

About Brooklyn Pride:

Brooklyn Pride is a 501(c)(3) wholly volunteer-managed, tax-exempt, non-profit organization working for and on behalf of all Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Brooklynites and all others who support the struggle for equality of this Community. In the spirit of Stonewall, Brooklyn Pride welcomes the participation of all the residents of Brooklyn and the outer boroughs, regardless of age, creed, gender, gender identification, HIV status, national origin, physical, mental or development disability, race, religion, or sexual orientation.

About To Proudly Go:

To Proudly Go is a 501c3 nonprofit organization formed for the purposes of creating safe and supportive spaces that celebrates science fiction, promotes the LGBTQIA+ community and partners with important community causes to empower and foster a kinder and better world.