Creating Vibrant Community
    by helping LGBTQ people along their way

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


Hey there,
Summer is here, and the second half of 2021 is speeding up. As we move forward together, consider the slower moments you’ve carved out for yourself in the last 16 months. What did you do to fill in the free time, the cancelled plans and trips, the days of uncertainty? Hold on to the parts of you that might have changed and carry them ahead into the future.
Consider our new drop-in grief support group, Good Grief, to mourn all the people, places, and things we lost during the pandemic. Or if laughter is more your medicine, check out Mina Hartong’s Stand Up Comedy Workshop Series next month.
Thanks to everyone who participated in our pop quiz last week. Indeed, The Center at the McDonald/Wright building in Palm Springs will be open once construction is complete, hopefully at the end of the summer.
This week we’re curious about how you are managing moving your body during the torrid heat.
I get out early in the morning for a walk, bike ride or other activity
I go out as soon as the sun goes down
You can find me in the pool
Indoor gyms or home activity for me
With news of heat exhaustion and strokes, please stay hydrated and manage your exposure to the heat if you can!
Director's Letter
Somehow this June feels so much more stressful for me than last June; no doubt I was still in shock, but also life had slowed down so it felt more calm. This June, I feel myself slipping back to the familiar habits – the inability to say no, over-packing my calendar, trying to do all the things. Add on top of that anticipating a new CEO soon, wondering what going back to the office will feel like, and this jarring feeling that we’ve all been through an extremely traumatic world event and the adults in the room aren’t acknowledging that reality.
It reminds me of my childhood growing up in a family with alcoholism and addiction; it’s almost like we’re in a collective denial… happy to continue the enabling behavior that has led to this world full of oppression, inequity, and pain, because doing what is familiar is easier, and tricks us into thinking that everything is fine. Everything is not fine, and I guess I just want more people to say it, and even more so, to act like it. So I’m doing best to remember the black and brown poor street folks and teens who were at Stonewall that night, 53 years ago, who shouted to everyone that this world is not it, that acted on the truth that we deserved better, and did something about it.
Lex Ortega
Director of Innovation
& Community Engagement
Step Right Up!
Every great journey starts with just one step...
come take The Center's next journey with us. 
Call Deb now 760 416 7790 ext.117
or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
for more details on donor recognition.
Thanks being part of our journey and growth… every step of the way.
Upcoming @ The Center
Wednesday, June 23rd
4pm to 5pm
Meeting ID: 975 8966 497
Sexually Transmitted Infections at Any Age
Join Jon Colbert, NP, Eisenhower Health for a discussion on sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and your health. Jon will be discussing what STI screening means and how to get it done by your primary care provider. He will focus on screening for syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, HPV, HIV, Hepatitis A/B/C, and HSV. He will also touch on current treatment guidelines for these infections, as well as novel preventive strategies to keep you and the community safe from the spread of these infections.
Coming Next!
Sexual Health in a
Please join Jonathan Bechard, MD, Internal Medicine, for a sex-positive discussion around common medical risks associated with fetish play, how to avoid them, how to talk about them with your doctor, and how to bring a health-positive voice to your desires and experimentation.
Wednesday, July 14th
4pm to 5pm
Meeting ID: 975 8966 497
Ongoing Programs
Our popular ASL program returns under the great leadership of Itai Cardona.
This 8-week course is for those who want to learn another language and communicate with members of the Deaf Community. During the classes, beginner students will actively engage in exciting activities so that learning another language becomes fun again. No experience is necessary! 
Cost is $80.00
Start the Week
with Zumba!
Start the week with some
physical fun that utilizes your
best dance moves and puts a
smile on your face as you
exercise to great music.
Hosted by
Shaun Samaro
Mondays 10AM - 11 AM
Join the conversation
Our virtual space for ALL of our LGBTQ+ community members to come together, talk with one another, and move through the conversation about race.
NEW Workshop
Sign Up Now!
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.
Fridays, July 16th thru
Aug 21st (6 wks)
Final Performance
on the final Saturday!
$250.00 for full course
4:00PM - to 5:30PM
If you have an idea for a program you'd like to see or perhaps facilitate,
NEW program NOW enrolling!
Good Grief!
Wednesdays @1pm
via Zoom
Good Grief! is a drop in group for those struggling with actual or anticipated loss, grief, or bereavement.
Facilitated by Amy Prescott, Clinical Trainee & Sean Ferri, Registered Psychological Assistant.
For more info or to sign up email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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.
Get Resources
  • Distribution: Every Thursday 5:00pm to 7:00 pm (PDT) at 610 S. Belardo Rd. in Palm Springs
  • Outdoor food distribution: Drive thru or walk ins
  • First come – First served
  • Face mask required and social distancing is being observed.
  • No requirements - Bring a picture ID (If available).
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!
Due to the high summer temperatures, we ask that guests and visitors bring their own supplies to stay hydrated and screened from the sun during food distribution.
L-Fund Financial Assistance!
The mission of The L-Fund is to empower cis and trans lesbians through financial crisis assistance, grants for education and the arts, and health and wellness programs.
The L-Fund envisions a future of an inclusive and diverse community in which lesbians are provided a reliable resource for financial assistance, social engagement, and programs that enrich the lives of lesbians.
If you're in need of assistance you can contact the L-Fund here.
Lend your support!
Our friends and community partners, Brothers of the Desert have created a guide to Black Owned Business in the Coachella Valley which you can find on their website here.
You can also find the list in the resources section on our website here.
Please consider lending your support to these local businesses who have faced hardship through the pandemic and from a financial system which often fails them.
Help is here for paying your rent!
Lift to Rise is once again able to help local residents whose ability to pay rent may be impacted by COVID-19. Learn more about the fund, your eligibility, and how to apply here.
Take Action
Vaccines available!
Speaking of COVID-19 vaccines, our Health & Wellness partner Eisenhower Health are also a great resource to schedule your vaccine appointment! To schedule an appointment at the main Eisenhower Health campus in Rancho Mirage, click here.
The Eisenhower Health Covid-19 Vaccine Clinic Location is located at the Eisenhower Health Main Campus at the Annenberg Health Sciences Building, at 39000 Bob Hope Drive, Rancho Mirage.
If you are experiencing difficulties in making an appointment, please let us know This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we can connect you with someone that can help you.
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.
Family Hospice Care, a Medicare certified Hospice agency, has been a leading provider of end-of-life care since 2006 in the Coachella Valley and Hi-Desert regions. They are a dedicated team of compassionate and caring health care professionals, who provide the highest level of care and support services to our community. They enable people who have a life-limiting illness to live a dignified, pain free, and symptom controlled life.
We’re very grateful for their continued support and for what they do for our desert LGBTQ community. Learn more about our Diamond partner here.
Community Events
Loud & Proud: A Celebration of Pride Bands
from Coast to Coast
Saturday, June 26, 4PM - 7PM
Don’t miss this special virtual concert as LGBTQIA+ bands
from across the nation celebrate Pride!
To watch the concert please register here.
Palm Springs Pride!
What you Need to know.
Palm Springs Pride organizers invite you to enjoy a traditional slate of in-person Pride events for the 35th annual LGBTQ celebration scheduled for November 1 – 7, 2021. The Pride parade and festival featuring multiple stages of live
entertainment and a vendor marketplace will return to downtown Palm Springs.
Enjoy Pride in Palm Springs as you Sip, Sashay, and Celebrate. Embrace diversity and advance the cause of individual freedom for all while you honor those who have courageously fought for equality and are no longer with us. Live your truth and no one else's. Gather your friends, and together we will celebrate our fearlessly authentic lives. 
"You Are Included" is more than a theme for Pride 2021; it proclaims all are seen
and loved. Our gender identity, race, religion, nationality, health status, and appearance are embraced, celebrated, and welcome at Palm Springs Pride. Visit pspride.org for event details.
Exhibitor Applications Open
Festival highlights include a Youth Zone, Children's Garden, LGBTQ artists, 200 back-to-back exhibitors, food and beverage stations, health resources, and HIV testing sites.
Take your photo with Arty, the 20' tall leather bear, and enjoy yourself in the Arenas Rd gayborhood, our pedestrian-only social center of LGBTQ-friendly bars, restaurants, and shopping. There's something for everyone. Favorite bars and local businesses will be packed and spilling out onto the streets for the biggest LGBTQ street party in Palm Springs.
Secure your space today.  Click here to signup.
Parade Applications Are Also Available
Sunday, November 7 (10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.) 
Secure your space today.  Click here to signup.
The colorful parade steps off in the Uptown Design District at Tachevah and
Palm Canyon Dr. and travels south through downtown, ending at
the entrance to the Pride Festival at Amado.
Known for its crystal blue skies and year-round sunshine, the city of Palm Springs comes alive during the annual Pride celebration. Thousands of spectators will
gather along palm tree-lined streets to cheer and support local organizations,
activists, and themed floats along historic Palm Canyon Dr.
The parade is scheduled to last two and a half hours. 
Be with us and show your Pride.
Resiliency Survey - Ends this month!
In response to the COVID pandemic, HARP-PS is collaborating with researchers at UCLA & USC to measure resilience in older adults during the past year of the pandemic. We are looking for people who can answer questions about resiliency, and how they’ve been coping during the Covid-19 Pandemic. You may be eligible for this study if you are:
· over 50 years old
· Either HIV- or HIV+ 
· Live in the Coachella Valley 
· Comfortable taking the survey in English 
You will receive a $20 eGift Card for participating Participation in this survey is voluntary and should take about 30 minutes Please click on this link to take survey.
The survey has had over 15,000 respondents to date. If you can please add your experience, it remains open until the end of Pride month.
Connect Virtually
PALS seniors and future seniors, Planning Ahead before a health issue requires connections. Come join the conversations.
PALS Café:
Every Wednesday, 4 PM – 5 PM
Join PALS for an informal discussion on various pertinent topics.
June 23, 2021- Pride month: What makes you proud to be LGBTQIA+?
Zoom ID # 832 2405 1340, Passcode: 016864, Zoom Link here
Dial in: 699-900-9128
To find your nearest dial in # click here.
For more dates, sign up for email notifications at their website: palsinthedesert.com
Death Café
Thursday, July 1st, 2 PM - 3 PM
A Death Cafe is a group-led open conversation about death and dying; and in doing so to live life more fully. It is not a counseling or bereavement group; and there is no agenda, specified topics, or designated outcomes. 
Join the conversation. Bring your curiosity and questions and engage in a discussion about the aspects of death and dying that interest you.
Register here.   
THIS Saturday, June 26, 2021 10 AM.
Journey Together With Dementia: Exploring Care and Support Services.
Register here.
Gay Desert Fun
Gay Desert Guide share a full calendar listing of gay events. You can check out their plans for #PalmSpringsPride and the entire 2021-22 season, or search their online events calendar by name or browse by date when you’re in town!
Download their calendar as a PDF here or visit their Facebook page here.
The Center's Legacy Circle
It only takes a few of us to write our history -
but it takes all of us to create our future.
This week we welcome new Founding Member James Sheya
to our Legacy Circle, bringing our total to 76!
In as little as 15 minutes you can include The Center in your estate plans by adding us as a designated beneficiary on any of your retirement accounts.
To learn more please contact, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or 760-416-7790 X117
Feel Good Story
Our friends @ The Albertsons and Vons companies recently selected The Community Food Bank @ The Center to receive a generous grant from The Albertsons and Vons
Foundation Nourishing Neighbors that will support children in our community impacted by food insecurity.
Many communities continue to be impacted by hunger and food access by the pandemic. Children can be especially susceptible to hunger during the summer months when school is out. Through the Nourishing Neighbors initiative, The Albertsons and Vons Foundation continues to focus on addressing hunger issues in the communities they serve. The Summer Meals program is part of their latest efforts.
They were here, and they were ours
Here we honor the memory of folks in our community who have passed.
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

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