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Team Friendly, Atlanta Sisters host ‘Kites, Kids & Just Because’ in Piedmont Park Sunday

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Atlanta's Team Friendly and Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence will host a family-friendly outing to Piedmont Park on Sunday, April 21, from 1 - 4 p.m.

The event, called “Kites, Kids & Just Because,” is not specifically a fundraiser but an opportunity for an inclusive gathering, Randy Prophater, chair of Team Friendly, said today by phone.

“We decided, as opposed to having events, specifically eating or bar events, we wanted to do something inclusive,” Prophater said. “People can show up with their families and friends and have a fun day.”

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AIDS Walk Atlanta set for Oct. 20

AIDS Walk Atlanta

The 23rd annual AIDS Walk Atlanta & 5K Run will take place Sunday, Oct. 20, at the traditional Piedmont Park location, event organizers announced today. Last year's event raised $940,000 to help support several local HIV/AIDS organizations.

Some 10,000 walkers and runners are expected to participate in this year's event, billed as the largest HIV/AIDS fundraising event in the Southeast.

“AID Atlanta is excited to embark on our 23rd annual AIDS Walk Atlanta & 5K Run campaign,” Cathy Woolard, interim executive director of AID Atlanta, said in a prepared statement. “The event brings a diverse group together in support of those living with HIV/AIDS, education and prevention to reduce new infections and a forum to remember those we have lost to the disease. We are most grateful to those who raise funds to support the campaign; the funds make it possible for us to continue our necessary work in metro Atlanta where the rate of HIV infection continues to rise.”

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AIDS Walk Atlanta still hopes to raise $1 million for local organizations

AIDS Walk

The 2012 AIDS Walk Atlanta and 5K run drew thousands to Piedmont Park Oct. 27 in hopes of raising  $1 million to fund several HIV/AIDS organizations.

As of Nov. 6, the event had raised more than $850,000, but donations will be accepted until the end of November. Last year, AIDS Walk Atlanta raised close to $1 million, surpassing 2010’s total by $82,000.

The agency still seeks a new executive director after Tracy Elliott resigned from the position in June after serving five years at the helm. Jon Santos, development director at AID Atlanta, resigned shortly after Elliott to take a position with Jerusalem House.

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[Photos] Starlight Cabaret closes Atlanta Pride in drag splendor

Starlight Cabaret

The best drag performers from Atlanta, Decatur, Marietta and even Athens took the Atlanta Pride stage for Sunday evening’s Starlight Cabaret, closing out the annual festival in a fitting finale of wigs, glitter and glamour.

The show opened with the Armorettes, the camp drag troupe that recently celebrated raising $2 million for the fight against HIV, and closed with all of the performers and Pride volunteers on stage for “Seasons of Love.”

In between were dozens of drag queens and kings who strutted, posed, twirled, shimmied and shook to tunes ranging from hip-hop to country, with plenty of dance divas in the mix.

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[Photos] Indigo Girl Amy Ray rocks hometown crowd at Atlanta Pride

Amy Ray of the Indigo Girls

Hometown favorite Amy Ray, best known as one half of the beloved folk duo Indigo Girls, brought her edgier solo show to the Atlanta Pride stage on Sunday evening.

Backed by the Butchies, Ray rocked through a set that opened with her striking “Rural Faggot” and closed with her mandolin-driven ode to standing up against religious hate, “Let it Ring.”

Ray spoke from the stage about the significance of playing Atlanta Pride and dedicated a song to her partner, Carrie. To hear more from Ray about her experience of coming out personally and in her music career, please read our full interview here.

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[Photos] Erasure’s Andy Bell brings star power to Pride’s Saturday stage

Andy Bell

Erasure front man Andy Bell closed out Atlanta Pride’s stage on Saturday evening, following British pop songstress Rita Ora, who already had the crowd packed to the stage and ready to dance.

Bell, who has also had a successful solo career, treated fans to a set of favorites including Erasure hits like  “Chains of Love.”

Appearing alone on stage, Bell began his set in suit jacket, then tossed it aside to dance and twirl in a sleeveless t-shirt. He also thanked his partner, who he is soon to marry, who was standing to the right of the stage during the show.

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AIDS Walk Atlanta aims for biggest year ever

AIDS Walk Atlanta

Organizers have set an ambitious goal for this year’s AIDS Walk Atlanta, which would make the annual fundraiser the largest in the event’s history.

The walk routinely attracts 10,000 walkers and runners who last year combined to raise $1 million for only the second time in the event’s history. This year organizers hope to build on that success and raise $1.25 million for the eight participating agencies.

“For these organizations this is how they find money for extra HIV tests; this is how employees are paid,” AIDS Walk Office Manager Billy Jones said.

The 2012 AIDS Walk steps of Sunday, Oct. 21, from Piedmont Park.

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Pride: Starlight Cabaret ends Pride on glamorous note

Starlight Cabaret

The Starlight Cabaret ends Pride weekend on a particularly high note, closing out the Coca-Cola stage at 7 p.m. Sunday evening.  For many, it is one of the highlights of the entire weekend of activities, as Atlanta’s drag queens and kings bring out their best performances for their largest audience of the year.

Tony Kearney, who handles programming for the Atlanta Pride Committee, has been involved in putting the cabaret together for the last five years.  It’s the largest celebration of its kind in the Southeast and retains much of the day’s crowd.

“It’s amazing to see how many people are still in the park after Pride,” Kearney said. “Last year there were around 5,000 people enjoying the show.”