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Fall Preview: Atlanta Pride, plus much more to fill your community calendar

Atlanta Pride festival

As the temperature falls from the high 90s to the low 80s, Atlanta’s social calendar picks up with some of the biggest LGBT events of the year.

The season offers a bit of everything, from huge outdoor events like Atlanta Pride and AIDS Walk Atlanta, to smaller fundraisers, Halloween galas, and even somber occasions like Transgender Day of Remembrance and World AIDS Day.

Fall is so crowded with LGBT gatherings that two garden party fundraisers will overlap with each other. Both the Health Initiative and Lambda Legal will hold garden parties in Midtown on Sept. 23.

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UPDATED: Jane Lynch calls out Atlanta Pride over annual Aquarium party

Jane Lynch

Actress Jane Lynch this week sent a letter to the Atlanta Pride Committee urging the APC to change the venue of its now-annual Pride Kickoff Party at the Georgia Aquarium over concerns for the animals' well-being.

"These parties are supposed to be loud and boisterous—it's a celebration!" writes Lynch in a letter to APC's acting Executive Director Buck Cooke.

"However, animals shouldn't have to suffer for the sake of a party,” Lynch continued. “Many of the marine mammals at the aquarium are extremely sensitive to sound, and large parties create an even more stressful environment than they already endure in captivity. … Since the kickoff party sets the tone for all of Pride, will you please consider moving it to one of the many alternative venues that Atlanta has to offer?"

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PHOTOS: ‘Like Pride and Halloween mixed together’ at Dragon*Con


Another Dragon*Con is in the books, and thousands of gays turned out over Labor Day weekend to watch or join in the spectacle of one of the nation’s largest costumed conventions.

“It’s one of the largest events in the world and so it’s great to come down and see people go crazy in that regard. It’s like Pride and Halloween mixed together,” said Mike Dillers of Cobb County, who came down for the weekend.

The convention draws roughly 50,000 people from across the country for a five-day celebration of everything geeky. From sci-fi to fantasy to horror, actors, authors and producers mingle with fans who often show off costumes or hunt autographs.

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Big bucks raised at Big Gay Game Show — but more needed to help homeless LGBT youth

Big Gay Gameshow

The monthly (every third Wednesday) Big Gay Game Show raised approximately $1,000 for Lost-n-Found during its "fifth episode" on Aug. 15 at Jungle with more than 200 people in attendance donating $5 each.

The evening of raucous and raunchy (and very gay) takes on such shows as  "Let's Make a Deal" hosted by Bubba D. Licious and Ian Aber; "The Newlywed Game" hosted by the continually resurrected Wild Cherry Sucret; "Match Game" hosted by Rory Evans; and "Family Feud" with Chandler Bearden asking the questions (but, unfortunately for contestants, no inappropriate smooching).

This month's episode was extra special with a guest appearance by none other than Jonny McGovern, "The Gay Pimp." Seems gay pimps prefer flannel over feathered fedoras.

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Renaissance Fest opens gates Sunday to second annual Gay Day

Mother Redempta and Sister Philomena

The Georgia Renaissance Festival is again opening its doors to Atlanta's LGBT Tudor enthusiasts for a specific Gay Day with a discount that can be used throughout the 16th century flashback's 2012 season.

Sunday, May 6, is the festival's second annual Gay Day. Discounted tickets are available at Enter the promo code "david" to save $4 on adult tickets and $2.95 on tickets for the little knights and ladies.

Sarah Peterman, director of sales and marketing for the Georgia Renaissance Festival, says the second annual Gay Day reaches an important target audience that enjoys the festival as much as the general public.

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Our top 25 photos of the year

In 2011, we uploaded more than 5,500 photos from dozens of parades, festivals, protests, press conferences and nightlife events. Here's our picks for the best photos of the year.

Players of the Knoxville Woodpeckers softball team put their cleats in with an empty cleat to honor a deceased teammate at the Big Peach Softball tournament hosted by the Hotlanta Softball League. (Photo by Dyana Bagby)