Lauren, Annie, Donny, Haley, Bebe, Melanie, and LaDiva at The Silver Lining

Lauren, Annie, Donny, Haley, Bebe, Melanie, and LaDiva at The Silver Lining

Happy summer! If our springtime activities were any indication of how busy we will be in the summer, then it’s going to be jam-packed!

On April 19, the Imperial Court of Rhode Island held their annual Coronation event at the Biltmore Hotel, showcasing the final bow for Empress Jealousy Jonz and Emperor Ryder Hard after a successful year’s reign. They passed the torch—or  should  we say “crown”— to Empress XXIII Angela Soprano-Butana. The fantastic costumes and elaborate tiaras adorning drag royalty from near and far sparkled during the many spectacular song-and-dance numbers. The event’s Honorary Co–chair, Olympic figure skater Michelle Kwan, was presented with a special tiara and she and husband Clay Pell graciously posed for with guests.Trust us, you need to get to this entertaining event next year!

We found  ourselves  in Newport on April 24 as chaperones of Channing Interweave’s Born This Way Prom for LGBTQ youth and their allies.The perfect weather and gorgeous Easton’s Beach Rotunda welcomed young people from all over the state to have the night of their lives. We got goosebumps  seeing so many of them dance and express themselves without feeling persecuted or worried about being bullied. DJ Butch Taylor kept the dancers on the floor all night, but it was never more packed than when famed Drag Queens Vi’let Laboss, Jacqueline DiMera, Gia Devaroux, and Angela Soprano–Butana took to the dance floor to perform as the kids excitedly cheered. Pam Goff, the driving and enthusiastic force behind the prom, took to the microphone to ask how many youth were attending for the first time; attendance had doubled since last year. Everything about this prom depicts how society and life should be: welcoming, enthusiastic, loving, embracing, and fun. For an amazing volunteer experience, get in touch with Channing Memorial Church in Newport to help make the magic happen next spring.

AIDS Care Ocean State (ACOS) held its 25th Anniversary Gala, The Silver Lining, at the ornate Providence Performing Arts Center lobby on May 2, and the many silver-attired guests enjoyed a perfect night.This moving event not only showcased 25 years of ACOS services, but also honored several humanitarians who fought to make a difference in the lives of those infected and affected by HIV/AIDS, including Paul Carpentier and Dennis Delsignore, Alicia Brock, and the late Sister Anne Keefe. Congratulations to Stephen Hartley, board members, and the entire  team  at  ACOS on 25 years of dedicated service and support to our community!

Summer will be heating up with lots of fun activities. We recommend you mark your calendar for upcoming events such as Pride Karaoke on June 7 at The Village; Boston Pride Parade & Festival on June I3; Drag Bingo: Peace, Love & Understanding on June 18; and, of course, Rhode Island PrideFest and The Illuminated Night Parade on June 20. Please remember to donate to Rhode Island Pride to ensure successful festivals for years to come. Come out, be seen, and be part of the community!