Hagerstown Hopes Presents Hagerstown Pride 2019!

Happy Pride from all of us at Hagerstown Hopes! As you may know, 2019 commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. It was the Stonewall Riots that began our community’s long journey to where we are today. Along the way we fought, and won, battles for equality and civil rights. Every member of our community has a different relationship to these events. Some were pioneers, leading the movement; others were born into a more progressive, accepting world created by those who came before them. It is our history and culture that connects us, and that’s cause for Pride and […]

The Perks of Pride

This seems to be the year of Pride. Over the last few years we’ve been seeing more and more small towns and communities celebrating Pride. Only a few years ago it seems that only major cities celebrated Pride; now, Pride is everywhere, and I couldn’t be happier about that. Every town has its own personality, made up of all the folks who call it home. This means that every Pride is different and is a reflection of the wants and needs of the community. Having attended several Prides already this year (with more to come), I’m happy to say that […]

How Lizzo is Bringing More than an Award Show’s House Down

My wife and I watched Lizzo’s performance from the MTV Movie and TV awards a combined 30 times this week. My YouTube now has a row entitled “Watch Again,” which consists of just that video. I have at least a dozen albums that are not a part of our music subscription’s licensing that I enjoy playing along to, and an unhealthy and longstanding obsession with The Lonely Island’s videos, and the only video that has ever prompted this new category is Lizzo. I love both the homage to Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit. Alli is far less a […]

Why Are We Like This?

My young friend came out to his parents today. It was his own Independence Day. He sat them down and told them in no uncertain terms. His mother cried. His dad was silent. He was scared. That scenario plays out in so many households. It’s a shame that in this day and time we have to worry about what people think about our sexuality. It’s a shame that our young people still think they need to live in a closet. It’s a worse shame that there are some places where closets still keep people safe. Our children should be able […]

Karen Kendra Holmes: My Journey

The question you may be asking is “Who is Karen Kendra Holmes?” To start things off, I am an advocate for the transgender community. But let me take you back to the time before I became an advocate for my fellow sisters and brothers in the community. I recall as early as 13 years of age when I started dressing in clothes designed for women. I wasn’t sure why or when I decided to do that, but I felt right within myself to wear women’s clothing and I was more comfortable with myself when I did. For years I purchased […]

Hagerstown Hopes Gears Up for Hagerstown Pride!

Happy Pride from all of us at Hagerstown Hopes! This is one of our favorite times of year, a season of community, fun, and celebration for the LGBTQ community. We’ve been hard at work planning and making preparations for Hagerstown Pride. Along the way, we’ve been fortunate enough to have the opportunity to add a few events leading up to the Hagerstown Pride festival, scheduled for July 13th from noon to 6 pm in the Central Parking Lot in downtown Hagerstown. We hope you’ll join us to celebrate Pride season! Pride season begins with our Pride Kickoff Night Out at […]

The Banner

Having been in marching band for six years, I’m no stranger to parades. My school participated in all kinds of parades, celebrating virtually every holiday and local festival imaginable. It wouldn’t be a stretch to say that we would march and play to commemorate the opening of an envelope. I thought I’d seen it all, then I marched in the Baltimore Pride parade and realized my years of middle and high school band had not prepared me for a Pride parade. At all. When I was asked to march in the parade, I immediately said yes. After all, I knew […]

Late Night Dates and Nostalgia

Every night is the same in my life. After we put the pup to bed in his crate for the night, we head upstairs for our own nightly unwind before bed. Usually, since I work until 11, we are also scarfing down our dinner as we slowly transition. Part of our ritual is vehemently searching for something to watch. Currently, we are caught up on most everything we watch and until our summer shows begin again, we are usually watching “Judge Judy” videos on Youtube while my wife suggests literally anything else. Usually she suggests movies, which is a quagmire, […]

Time for Rodeo School! Calling all wannabe cowboys & cowgirls

So what’s a rodeo school? A rodeo school is a play-day event that’s dedicated to learning how to perform the events in a gay rodeo. At a gay rodeo, you’ll find traditional rodeo events such as barrel racing, bull riding, and calf roping. Gay rodeos also add in some fun crowd-pleasing camp events that even those who don’t know how to ride a horse or have never been around livestock can do. The three added camp events that you’ll find at a gay rodeo are goat dressing (a team relay race to put underwear on a goat), steer decorating (a […]

Who Makes the Rules?

I am so tired of parent shaming, I might have to explode. What gives someone the right to criticize other people’s parenting styles? Who makes these rules that people seem to want to enforce at random? I’ve never seen the list and I’ll bet you haven’t either. Today was one of those days when the parent shaming statements were too loud to ignore. Someone didn’t like the way a four year old was dressed. His parents must be horrible. I saw the kid wearing shorts, shirt, socks, and shoes. He was dressed. End of discussion. Someone else didn’t like that […]