Monday, August 24, 2009

Swing Out Tuesday

Involvement Opportunity: Stonewall Democrats will hold our monthly meeting Thursday, August 27th at 6:00 pm at DPA HQ. Kyle Simon will be our guest speaker. Kyle currently serves as Arkansas State Director for Organizing for America, a project of the Democratic National Committee. OFA's mission is to organize grassroots support for President Obama's policy agenda and build a sustainable grassroots network in all 50 states. Prior to joining OFA, Kyle worked on the Florida Attorney General's race, and before that served as Arkansas Field Director for President Obama's campaign and has worked on two gubernatorial campaigns in Florida and Delaware.

Faces of HIV/AIDS: Members from Central City's Brotha's and Sistas are in attendance of the CDC's 2009 HIV Prevention Conference in Atlanta in an effort to retrieve the latest updates and information on this health crisis. While at the convention the attendees will be able to hear from former National Basketball Association player Earvin "Magic" Johnson whom gave Sunday's opening address of the convention according to the Southern Voice blog "The Latest" reports. He "spoke frankly about being HIV positive for nearly 20 years," and discussed the impact black religious leaders have on addressing HIV/AIDS in the black community, according to the blog. Johnson said, "We now have a major problem in urban America, in inner cities -- the face of AIDS has changed from a gay white man's disease to a black and [Hispanic] disease. And if we don't get the black church involved, there is no way we can bring these numbers (of new HIV cases) down." The Magic Johnson Foundation "is working to partner with black churches ... because African-Americans are disproportionately impacted by the disease," according to the blog. Johnson said, "We all have to get black churches involved. If we do, we will see change quickly. One constant in the black community is the church" Locally, the dilemma of getting churches and clergy involved has been marginal to none despite statistics that cite the increase of the disease in the African American community overall. As a positive statement, wouldn't it be an interesting premise if a group of local Ministers stepped up to be tested and speak openly about this issue. I wonder if this were proposed, just how many would be ready to do so. More than 3,000 public health, medical and AIDS community leaders are in Atlanta through Aug. 26 for the National HIV Prevention Conference. I salute those B &S members who took the challenge to access and network within this conference. It's vitally important that our local organizations connect to these types of venues where innovative and progressive mindsets are providing valuable resources.

BARWATCH: I finally went to the source about what's really going on with the launch of PULSE nightclub. Norman Jones himself offered myself a pre walk through of his latest venture and openly spoke about it's development. " It's been a work in progress, but after some delays PULSE will offically open to the public on September 2." The night spot adjacent to OffCenter will feature a stylized foyer lounge with cushy seating, distinctive bar, and both staging and dance area. " We will be open on Sunday's with a Beer Bust and the club will have spotlight shows in conjunction to shows featuring Whitney Paige and Breanna Braxton. I think it will be good mix including the 18 to 21 crowd." Even though the new site is not a cavernous as the Backstreet Complex, I believe that it's chic boutique feel will adequately fullfill another niche in the 7th Street corridor mash up. Especially those of us who miss dancing which I use to do much of in the past. It's a great means to getting the weight off and moving those muscles that haven't been in motion for some time. There will be a invitiation only "soft opening" 9.1.09 and this forum has made the guest list. Stay tuned... Meanwhile, there's still speculation swirling about the impending or whatever about Club SWAY from the Marcus empire which is making it's way through the ABC maze. As yet, there's been no formal anything that I can determine and I've found no access to Mr. M himself for comment. The site is proposed for 301 Center, a former print shop that in my estimate will take a serious tear out and revamp to make it viable. As I stated before, Mr. M will have to "bring it" to really compete for the minds, ears, and pockets of the community. And finally, Speakeasy Supper Club & Piano Bar is in the home stretch toward completion despite some setbacks and delays. The proprietors are enthusiastic and expressing a "go for it" attitude as they prepare for their opening in mid September. According an in house flier, "there will only be a cover charged very occasionally on Saturday nights for out town acts..." Also the flier states that their will be a SpeakEasy Revue, Jazz & Acoustic Nights and future Sunday classical/ Jazz brunch. I've seen the menu, the venue and met some personnel and I'm waiting with great anticipation for the grand unveiling. It should be interesting to say the least.

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