Out Astoria February 2010 Newsletter

Upcoming Out Astoria Events and News

A Note from Out Astoria President Dirk McCall

In the last few months, Out Astoria has undergone some significant re-organization and we want to keep you posted and invite your increased participation and input.

First, we have elected a new board – Out Astoria Co-founders Dirk McCall and Brent Gallenberger have been elected President and Vice President respectively. Joining them on the Executive Committee are Paul Nichols as Secretary and Courtney Joseph as Treasurer. Rounding out the board are five committee chairs and three at-large board members, Michael Mallon as Business Outreach Chair, Michael Murphy as Events Chair, John Paul Detty as Membership Chair and Chap James Day as Communications Chair with Sean Leous, Jesse Normand and Jonathan Blue as at large members.

We are meeting regularly as a board to overhaul our event programming, have unveiled our new logo (designed by our very own Michael Murphy) and will be launching our new website later this Spring.

We will be moving over to a membership based organization in early May with a discount program and other offers for members, as well as instituting membership voting on board positions. We welcome people to step forward to serve on committees and give us feedback.

Our first game night held on February 21, was a huge success and our mentor-ship program will be launched in April. We are holding our first wine-tasting next month and are scheduling a bowling night for May. We hope you will get involved and help spread the word – Out Astoria means community and it will become what our membership puts into it. Help us thrive!

–Dirk McCall, President

Brunch at Locale Cafe & Bar, Sunday, 28 Feb, 1:30pm – 33-02 34th AveLocale’s Website (Music)

Bid a fond (or not-so-fond) farewell to February with every gay’s favorite Sunday pastime: brunch! The Out Astoria Monthly Brunch is going back to Locale Café this month.

RSVP on Facebook

Out Astoria marches in St Pats For All Parade, Sunday 7 Mar, 1pm – Skillman Ave and 43rd St St Pat’s For All Website

If you didn’t know, the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Manhattan excludes GLBT folks from participating in their parade. In reaction to this hatred, Out Astoria’s own Brendan Fay started up St Pat’s For All as an alternative inclusive parade in 2000. Out Astoria has marched in this parade in the last two years, and will be doing so again this year. A Facebook Invitation will be forthcoming shortly.

If you are interested in marching, please email us at info@outastoria.com

March Dinner at El Sitio de Astoria, Wednesday 10 Mar, 7pm – 35-55 31st Street Yelp Page for El Sitio

If you like Cuban food, have we got a treat for you! El Sitio has great portions, great prices, and some of the best Cuban food in Astoria. Come to this, and you’ll be in for a real treat. Be sure to RSVP on Facebook when the invitation goes out.

March Mixer at Sissy McGinty’s with Why Leave Astoria, Friday 19 Mar, 8pm-11pm – 25-67 Steinway Street Sissy McGinty’s Website (Music)

For the Luck of the Irish, we’re joining Why Leave Astoria at Sissy McGinty’s. Sissy’s is a favorite of many of the Out Astoria folks who call this place their regular hang out. We are also very happy to be joining with Why Leave Astoria folks. Look forward to the Invitation through Facebook in the coming weeks with details about the specials!

March Brunch at Mundo Cafe, 28 Mar, 1:30pm – 31-18 Broadway (Ent on 32nd St) Mundo’s Website (Music)

Out Astoria returns to one of the hottest gay owned places for brunch, featuring Turkish and Argentinian Food. People swear by their Red Sonja lentil appetizers! This is a real treat. Mundo is one place you will find great food that will have you coming back again and again. Look forward to a Facebook invitation as the time nears.

Other Notices of Interest

WLA Lost in Astoria, 23 Feb, 8pm – Studio Square, 35-33 36th St

Hey LOST fans! Our friends at Why Leave Astoria?! are hosting their weekly Lost in Astoria Party at Studio Square tomorrow night. There’ll be drink specials, a Lost trivia contest, and more!

RSVP via Facebook Here

St Pat’s For All Concert, 2 Mar, 6pm – Irish Arts Center 553 W 51st St NY NY

Reception & food from 6pm
Concert at 7pm

Poetry, dance, song, jigs, reels- raffles! Malachy McCourt, Keltic Dream dancers, Niall O Leary school of dance, Haitian Percussionist band, Michael Patrick McDonald, from Ireland – Brian Fleming & Gwen Frinn, Kenny Lockwood…

Info: Brendan 718-721-2780 or Kathleen 718-898-8140
Limited number of seats! (100)

For tickets ($50 donation) “More if you can-less if you can’t”
make checks out to : ST PAT’S FOR ALL
mark memo: CONCERT
send to St Pat’s For All 22-22 28th Street, Astoria, NY 11105

On Facebook Here

Envisioning a Greener Western Queens – Astoria, 27 Mar, 9:30am-4:00pm – Greater Astoria Historical Society, 35-20 Broadway, Quinn Building, 4th Fl

Come for a lively day of visioning for a more sustainable and green future in Sunnyside, Astoria, Woodside & Long Island City — Help guide funding that will be used for tree planting and other environmental projects in Western Queens communities affected by the info@northstarfund.org or 212-620-9110.

Who Should Attend: Residents of the areas affected by the 2006 Con Edison power outages: Astoria, Sunnyside, Long Island City, and Woodside.

Background: Following the July 2006 Con Edison power outage, Western Queens Power for the People organized residents of Western Queens to hold Con Edison accountable for the effects of the outage. This organizing helped bring about a $63 million dollar joint proposal that prevented Con Edison from passing on the cost of the power outage to consumers and required Con Edison to reimburse people who lost power. About $7.9 million will be used for tree planting and other greening projects in the affected neighborhoods over the next three years. North Star Fund is the Project Administrator, and is working with Western Queens Power for the People to ensure effective, strategic and timely grants for a greener Western Queens.

Western Queens Power for the People
North Star Fund

Brunch tomorrow, a rally, and charity stuff….

A Note From Jonathan and RuPaul’s Drag Race

If you’re up for it tonight you’ll want to head on out to Lavish – if you made i to last week’s mixer you got a taste for how crazy things get there after 11pm these days…:) and although they’ve had to put the underwear party on hiatus for a bit (if you were there you know why) expect to see maybe a special installment of it in the coming months…something that can be better prepared for…for everyone!

Though this would be on opportune moment to suggest that everyone take a moment to place a few well-timed votes for Mimi Imfurst and her race to get onto season two of Rupaul’s Drag Race…so if you haven’t already voted today (and really you DO know you can vote DAILY, right? why not take a moment now and get one of our local gals on the little screen next season!? 🙂


now with that done, if you’re not planning to be out late with the local boys and girls at lavish lounge tonight might i direct you to our brunch tomorrow afternoon!


33-02 34 Avenue, Astoria, NY – 718-729-9080

We haven’t been back to Locale in ages – and originally this month we were slated to be at Cup Diner but then they decided to start renovations on their place so we decided to come back to an old brunch staple of ours!


Locale Cafe & Bar is located in the heart of historic Astoria, NY. It’s style reflects the neighborhoods modern yet multi-cultural sheik aspect, which has become a signature of present day Astoria. Locale’s diverse menu can accommodate almost any taste, whether it’s an early afternoon brunch or an intimate dinner by candlelight.

We can usually get a group of 20 in here at two different table groups! but try not to turn up too late, there’s a limit of bloody marys to which even i must adhere! 🙂

after the brunch the OA steering committee will be meeting up to have a little pre-pride powwow – so if there’s anything you’d like to ask or suggest feel free to send it to me tomorrow before 4pm and i’ll be glad to bring it up at the meeting!

but aside from that if you’re itching to do a little marriage equality stuff and really who isn’t these days…let me draw your attention to a fabulous rally…


30th Avenue at 30th Street, Astoria, NY – 877-772-0089

This fabulous rally in support of Marriage Equality is being put together by your local girls and boys involved with the local Marriage Equality Capter, Western Queens for Marriage Equality, and Astorians for Marriage Equality! But I’m going to give you the text of the evite just exactly as they have written it because who could say it better than they can?! Remember you don’t have to be on the facebook evite to attend, but if you want to invite more people to the rally feel free to just forward them this email…of course they want as many people there to support Marriage Equality as possible…and you know I’ll be there along with some of my Out Astoria bretheren! 🙂


Thanks for making the Prop 8 rally such a success- now we will be continuing NYS efforts for marriage equality with a rally this Sunday in Queens.

Come show your support for equality, meet up with fellow activists from Queens, hear music from Broadway stars (names TBA), and hear from government officials and members of our community who support marriage equality.

State Senator George Onorato, who represents much of Western Queens, currently opposes marriage equality but our work got us a meeting with him this past Thursday…so lets keep it up!

Senator Huntley, Senator Padavan, and Senator Addabbo of Queens currently oppose marriage equality. Senator Monsorrate is a supporter but not yet listed as a co-sponsor. Also, the Senate Majority Leader, Malcolm Smith, is a Queens senator. So, Let’s show these Queen’s Senators that there is public support for marriage equality!

This rally is sponsored by Western Queens for Marriage Equality. Western Queens for Marriage Equality is a coalition of groups including: Democracy for New York City, Long Island City Alliance, New York State Young Democrats, Queens County Young Democrats, the Jewish Alliance for Change, IntegrityNYC, Marriage Equality New York, Broadway Impact, Civil Rights Front, Empire State Pride Agenda, Civil Marriage Trail Project, OUT Astoria, Astorians United Against Hate Crimes and Astorians United for Peace and Justice.

Western Queens for Marriage Equality is a coalition group that believes marriage is a human right that should be available to all New Yorkers, regardless of sexual orientation. In the words of Mildred Loving, the woman whose courage made interracial marriage legal throughout America, marriage is about “the love, the commitment, the fairness, and the family that so many people, black or white, young or old, gay or straight seek in life. [We] support the freedom to marry for all.”

now if this sunday isn’t enough for you you’ll probably want to come and check out Lavish Lounge’s new Monday night series for charity!


34-01 36 Avenue, Astoria, NY -718-361-0022

Tonight and EVERY Monday in the month of June, the owners of Lavish Lounge have agreed to donate ALL profits made beyond their nightly overhead to charity!

Yeah SERIOUSLY! And during the month of June it’s going to be your best friends at Out Astoria!


Of course they’ll still be doing 2-4-1 drinks from 7pm to 10pm so make sure you stop by and have a few happy hour cocktails before heading home…keep in mind every dollar you spend a certain portion of it is going back to Out Astoria to help us get more events running in this fabulous little neighborhood!

Talk about a great way to get warmed up before NYC pride at the end of the month!

See you there this Monday!

and of course you don’t want to forget…


75th St. and 37th Avenue, Jackson Heights, NY – 718-228-7599

Join us on Sunday June 7th for the 17th Annual Queens Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Pride Parade & Multi-Cultural Festival. Don’t forget to look for Out Astoria at the street festival and in the parade…and you better say hi to Mimi and I at the judge’s tent on the parade route! 🙂

The Parade steps off at Noon from 89th St. and 37th Avenue in Jackson Heights, and marches to 75th St. and 37th Avenue. Where it meets up with the Multi-Cultural Festival on 75th St. and 37th Road.

It’s a day full of food, performances, music, dancing and of course PRIDE !!! We look forward to seeing you there!


If you’re not already a member of the Out Astoria facebook group you should join that too!http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=6026204257

And of course, don’t forget – we’re also on Why Leave Astoria?! – I went to a round table discussion they were having and these people are a hoot – even if you’re not gay you can get a lot from poking around their site – there’s tons of stuff going on locally that even my jaded ass didn’t know about!

That’s all for this weekend kids…if I don’t catch you out at Lavish tonight, hopefully we’ll be sitting next to each other at brunch tomorrow! 🙂

–jonathan (blue)