Creating Vibrant Community
    by helping LGBTQ people along their way





  • instagram facebookicon twitter





    760.416.7790 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Hey there,
Change is swirling in the air – whether it's the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, transition of U.S. leadership today, or our own impending leadership transition here @ The Center, there’s no doubt we’re entering a different present and new futures.
How will you shape your own future? Who are the people who will be your side? If you're interested in your own personal change, come into community and see what awaits. Or help create the future for others by submitting a program proposal!
And speaking of programs, here's what folks have signed up for so far:
A big thank you for taking part in the survey and be sure to check out even more new programs we're adding this week. Two of the newest programs coming are about meditation and queer spirituality, and we're very curious and excited about them! So while we're prepping for them, let us know:
Do you have a spiritual or meditation practice?
Letter from a Director
I’ve never really believed in New Years’ Resolutions. When I was younger, I strongly believed that every new day – every new sunrise – is an opportunity to make a change in life. But as I get older, and maybe more indoctrinated in the Gregorian calendar, I can feel the new energy that January brings and I let myself be swept up by it.
Last year, that manifested into a one-word intention for the year, and I often found myself coming back to that word throughout the difficulty of 2020. This year, my one-word intention that I hope to carry with me this year is open. How am I opening myself up to new discoveries of who I am? Am I being open to others? Is my heart open? And, of course, when will things – places, locations, businesses – open?
I notice there’s a new levity I now feel that I didn’t during the strain of December 2020. I don’t know how long this feeling might last, or if it’s even completely real, but it’s here and I’m relishing it. Plus, it really helps that the sun was shining brightly last week.
So, whether you’re feeling weighed down, bright and sunny, or something in between, remember – we’re here for you.
Lex Ortega
Director of Community Engagement & Innovation
Upcoming @ The Center
Everything LGBTQ+ in the Coachella Valley
Pandemic or no pandemic the 4th Annual INFO-A-GO-GO will take place in 2021 with a new twist. INFO-A-GO-GO is a one-stop-shop for all thing’s LGBTQ+ in the desert. Our community has so many amazing activities to become involved with and this is an opportunity to explore them all in one place…virtually and safely!
Instead of our usual physical event, this January 26th and 27th we will provide folks the chance to connect virtually. We've divided our list of participants into categories and each day of the event specific groups will be highlighted. Details can be found here.
Virtual Online Event
January 26th and 27th 2021
for more info contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
To register click here for Jan 26th
Coming Next Week
Meditation & Intuition starts Monday
By finding our inner gifts and tools to access a quiet peaceful place using meditation techniques, we can better achieve our goals in life.
With this new 8-week program, Barbara Lippert will guide you to a peaceful place and access your own spiritual intuition and help better understand what can work best for you.
Starts Jan 25, 2021
Mondays 2:30PM - 3PM
Long-Term Survivors starts next Wednesday
A new 12 week, closed session (no drop ins) of the Long-term Survivors Support Group for Gay Men Living HIV and AIDS begins via HIPAA-compliant Zoom calls.
Starts Jan 27, 2021
Wednesdays 2PM - 3PM
To register, email
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
or call 760 416 7899
Explore the Backcountry in a 4WD next week
Where does this road go and what is out there? Take the road less traveled. Join us for a look at some of the nearby backcountry 4x4 routes and discover what you may find along the way. Buckle your seatbelt for a ride to some amazing places.
Wednesday, Jan 27 @ 7PM
Meeting ID: 842 4221 9520
The conversation on race continues next Thursday
Our virtual space for ALL of our LGBTQ community members to come together, talk with one another, and move through the conversation about race.
The space will be facilitated by Lex Ortega, Director of Innovation & Community Engagement here @ The Center.
This month’s topic:
White Supremacy
In February
Queer Spirituality starts next month on 2/1
This group provides a safe place to discuss all aspects of what it means to be queer and spiritual. We explore, learn and support each other on our individual spiritual journeys without judgement, fear or expectations.
Starts Feb 1, 2021
First and third Mondays
10AM - 11AM
Bereavement sessions
start 2/8
This new 12 week, closed sessions of Bereavement Therapy Group is offered via HIPAA-compliant Zoom calls.
The program is for those who have lost a loved one and want assistance in dealing with their loss and to talk with others who understand what they are going through.
Facilitated by a MFT Intern under the supervision of a licensed therapist.
Starts Feb 8, 2021
Mondays 5PM - 6:30PM
To register, email
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
or call 760 416 7899
50+ FIT with Lynn starts 2/2 on Tuesdays
Lynn Simonson is back with her popular "50+ FIT" training
program via ZOOM!
This low-impact class is designed to Increase strength, flexibility and balance for everyone.
Starts Feb 1, 2021
$20 per month
First and third Mondays
10AM - 11AM
Chair Yoga with Lynn Simonson back on 2/4
This program has been carefully crafted by facilitator Lynn Simonson to help participants improve their overall health, and specially benefiting those with mobility issues, via ZOOM!
Engage in gentle seated stretches, grounding breath techniques and calming guided meditations.
Starts Thursday Feb 4, 2021
$30 per month
10AM - 11AM
Comedy Workshop Series
If you always wanted to try comedy, now you can! No experience necessary. Professional Emcee and Comedienne Mina Hartong (Curve Magazine America’s Funniest Lesbians) will guide you through a six part workshop series.
Saturdays, Feb 6 thru Mar 13 (6 wks)
$120.00 for full course
4:00PM - to 5:30PM
Monday, Feb 1st
Ten Essential Black LGBTQ Leaders
From the early days of the Civil Rights Movement to Black Lives Matter, LGBTQ persons have been in the forefront of the struggle for racial equality. This lively interactive discussion will look at ten such individuals (national and local) who sacrificed much for racial justice and are inspirations for us all.
Monday Feb 1, 6:30PM - 7:30PM PST
Meeting ID: 863 0963 4028
Passcode: 127311
Eisenhower Returns 2/10
There's more to heart attack and stroke prevention than medications, exercise, and diet. In fact, some of the latest research suggests that Meditation can be a useful part of cardiovascular risk reduction. Join Karen Stewart, RN, via ZOOM to learn more.
Wednesday, February 10th
4pm to 5pm
Meeting ID: 975 8966 4971
Register here
In need of more connection? Join us Monday through Friday online in our Zoom Meetings, like Knit Together, Women's Chat, Men's Chat, and much, much more.
Become a Founding Member of the Legacy Circle
It takes a few of us to write our history but it takes all of us to create our future. The Center is in the inaugural year of our Legacy Circle, which honors those who have named The Center in their Estate Plans, ensuring that we will be able to show up when our community needs us for generations to come.
If you have included The Center in your charitable estate plans, please let us know by contacting Debra Pollock at, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., so you can join our founding Legacy Circle members.
Get Resources
The Community Food Bank @ The Center
Located at 610 S Belardo Rd, Palm Springs, The Community Food Bank @ The Center is open for distribution every Thursday from 5PM - 7PM.
Drop-offs welcome on Tuesdays and Thursdays: 10:00 am to Noon and NEW Curbside drop off hours: Thursdays from 5:00 to 7:00 pm. Collecting barrels will be available in front of our food bank facility for easy, safe, self-service drive by - drop and go!
Also please consider purchasing online at websites like AmazonSmile® or from other online food suppliers of your preference, and deliver direct to The Center @ 1301 N Palm Canyon Dr, 3rd Floor. Palm Springs, CA 92262.
Take Action
Vaccinations - who, when and where?
Riverside County is planning several COVID-19 vaccine clinics for those in Phase 1A (all tiers), 1B (tier 1) and individuals 65 and older. Vaccination sites remain quite full, so you are encouraged to keep checking often. The County is working on opening additional sites and creating mobile units.
Check out https://www.ruhealth.org/covid-19-vaccine for appointments and more information.
Get tested for COVID to help our County!
You can help decrease transmission rates by following public health guidance, physical distancing, wearing a mask, and confirming your status by getting tested for COVID at these locations, including sites in Palm Springs, Desert Hot Springs, and Indio.
Testing is for everyone, regardless of immigration status or insurance.
Business Partners
Support those who give!
Please help support the businesses who support The Center, the work we do, and who give back so generously to our community. Click here for a list of Business Partners with The Center.
Knottinghill Bowties is a purveyor of bespoke, handmade bowties and accessories, but also community driven. They support local nonprofits and causes to the benefit of the LGBTQ community in areas of scholarships, housing, food banks and programs. Their business model is to make you look and feel good, give back, then give some more.
Learn more about our fabulous Emerald partner here.
Community Events
Physically distant social fun!
Our Friends at Gay Desert Guide have concocted several treats to keep you amused during the current
Stay-at-Home order.
Who can resist their Big Gay Golden Girl's Trivia Party, or their Bowties & Bears Speed Dating? They have diverse, upcoming talks on Joan of Arc and the Shocking Double Lives of Iconic Gay Artists, a smorgasbord of goodies to help make a memorable start to 2021!
Check out the fun events on their Facebook page here.
Brother of the Desert Speaker Series
"For Your Own Protection"
Yolo Akili Robinson
Founder and CEO
BEAM Community
(Black Emotional and Mental Health)
Saturday, January 23rd
11AM - 12:30PM
Please join Brothers of the Desert to hear this interactive and dynamic presentation by award winning author and acclaimed speaker, Yolo Akili Robinson who will speak about healing related to the experiences of Black Queer Communities.
For free tickets click here
If you have any questions email
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
They were here, and they were ours
Here we honor the memory of folks in our community who have passed.
Stephen Blauner (1953 - 2020)
Stephen was the 40-year husband of one of my high school classmates. He was a brilliant lawyer, financial advisor and a much-admired equestrian. I miss him! - John Tuttle
Dorothy Maranda (1930 - 2019)
My Mom instilled the values of volunteering and philanthropy in me by her examples and actions. After dementia and moving to Palm Springs, she continued to volunteer and support local LGBTQ causes. - Stefan Hill
If you'd like to submit a name for inclusion here, please fill out this form.
Submissions received by 5PM Friday will be included in the next week's newsletter, for two consecutive weeks.
The LGBTQ Community Center of the Desert | 1301 N. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs, CA 92262
1515 Sixth Street, Coachella, CA 92236
  • The LGBTQ Community Center of The Desert

    The McDonald/Wright Building

    1301 North Palm Canyon Dr, 3rd Floor
    Palm Springs, CA 92262

    760.416.7790 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Open Monday - Friday 8:30am - 4:30pm

    The Center is a non-profit 501 (c)(3) public charity
    EIN # 33-0937301

  • facebookicon twitter instagram