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Braves fans come ‘Out in the Stands’

Ben Cohen

The Braves will host the third annual “Out in the Stands” LGBT fan night June 18 when the New York Mets come to town.

Like last year, this year's event will double as a fundraiser for Ben Cohen's StandUp Foundation, which promotes LGBT equality in sports through public awareness campaigns, grants and other advocacy projects. Cohen's foundation is headquartered in Atlanta.

Cohen is most famous for being a former professional rugby player and Rugby World Cup winner with his native England.

Last year's event drew some 300 people to Turner Field. This year's format is slightly different, however. There will be another patio reception, but no VIP box experience.

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Big events on tap as Stonewall Month winds down in Ga.

2012 East Point Possums show

As cities around the nation celebrate LGBT Pride the last weekend in June, Atlanta’s Stonewall Month winds down with several Pride-themed events. From sports to festivals and even a “Sugarbutch” blogger, there is plenty to do before the month wraps up.

Pride festivals are traditionally held the last weekend in June to commemorate the 1969 Stonewall Riots, when patrons of the Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in New York City, fought back against police harassment in what is widely seen as a turning point for gay rights.

But after being celebrated the last weekend in June in Piedmont Park for most of its history, Atlanta Pride was forced to move in 2008 when a record drought booted all large festivals from the park. After an unpopular July 4 festival in 2009, Atlanta Pride organizers announced future festivals would be held in Piedmont Park to coincide with National Coming Out Day, Oct. 11.

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Stonewall: LGBT Braves fan night to benefit StandUp Foundation

Atlanta Braves LGBT fan night

The Atlanta Braves will host the team’s second annual “Out in the Stands” LGBT fan night on June 27. The game is a Wednesday night clash against the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Proceeds from special tickets will benefit the StandUp Foundation, an anti-bullying advocacy organization founded by English rugby star Ben Cohen.
Based in Atlanta, the StandUp Foundation works to raise awareness of bullying, with an emphasis on gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender youth. It is also dedicated to decreasing homophobia in sports.

Tickets to the game range are available in several packages. The upper box package is $20 and includes one drink ticket at the pre-game patio party. Outfield tickets go for $35 and include two drink tickets. VIP tickets are $200 and include two drink tickets and a meet-and-greet with Cohen in a catered party suite. A portion of every ticket sale, regardless of cost, includes a donation to the StandUp Foundation.

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Atlanta Braves bring back ‘Out in the Stands’

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The Atlanta Braves will host their second annual “Out in the Stands” event for LGBT fans of the summer classic during a Wednesday night showdown with the Arizona Diamondbacks on June 27.

This year's game will benefit Ben Cohen's StandUp foundation, an anti-bullying advocacy group based here in Atlanta. Cohen will attend the game and host a meet-and-greet session with fans, the Braves said.

The event was first organized in 2011 after Atlanta Braves pitching coach Roger McDowell was accused of using gay slurs toward fans at a game in San Francisco.

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Atlanta Braves debut anti-bullying video during ‘Out in the Stands’

Out in the Stands with the Atlanta Braves and Georgia Equality

The Atlanta Braves won in a dominant fashion on Tuesday night, and for the approximately 200 supporters of LGBT equality who bought special tickets benefiting the state's largest LGBT advocacy organization, Georgia Equality, last night was a chance to watch their hometown team beat up on a division rival in the company of other like-minded baseball fans.

For many of the gay and lesbian fans in attendance, the highlight of the night was not Brian McCann's homerun in the sixth inning that secured a win for the Braves, but instead a short public service announcement focusing on raising awareness for anti-bullying efforts in schools.

The video was displayed on the massive outfield Jumbotron during the pre-game warmups and featured several of the team's big names, including game-winner McCann, speaking about combating youth bullying.