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Content about Geography of Florida

January 7, 2015

Blockbuster queer destination will see gay and straight couples marry alongside each other at huge event

A mass beach wedding will take place in the city of Fort Lauderdale, to mark the introduction of gay marriage in the state of Florida this week.

To mark the change in law, the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau has launched the 'Love is Love' initiative – an event which will see gay and straight couples married alongside each other.

January 7, 2015

Some ceremonies took place just after midnight

Hundreds of same-sex couples were married in Florida on Tuesday (6 January), the first full day that gay marriage was legal across the state.

By day's end, just over 100 licenses had been issued in Miami-Dade County which began performing ceremonies on Monday (5 January) - a day earlier than any other county.

January 5, 2015

Tomorrow, rest of Florida to become 36th state in the US with marriage equality

Same-sex couples began getting married today in Florida's Miami-Dade County with other counties in the state expected to follow on Tuesday (6 January).

Judge Sarah Zabel of the Circuit Court of the Eleventh Judicial Circuit got things rolling by lifting a stay on her ruling - issued last July - that struck down the state's ban on gay marriage.

The courtroom erupted in cheers when Zabel asked if it would make a difference if she lifted the stay today or tomorrow. When told it would not make a difference she said: 'I'm lifting the stay.'

November 24, 2014

Blockbuster gay destination reaches out to trans travellers following trailblazing study

The Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention and Visitors Bureau (GFLCVB) has announced its intention to better cater for the needs of trans travellers following a pioneering new study.

The popular beachside destination commissioned the survey, completed by over 700 self-identified members of the American trans community, earlier this year.

November 1, 2014

Robert Champion was 26 when he died after being beaten inside a bus after a football game

A former Florida A&M band member was convicted Friday (31 October) of manslaughter and felony hazing in the 2011 death of the band's drum major, Robert Champion.

The jury in Florida took about an hour to convict 27-year-old Dante Martin who was the ringleader when it came to hazing ritual known as 'Crossing Bus C.'

Champion (pictured) was 26 when he died after enduring the ritual which involved band members beating him with punches, kicks, drumsticks, mallets while on a bus parked in a Orlando, Florida hotel parking lot.

October 26, 2014

Four band members face charges of felony hazing and manslaughter

Four Florida A & M University band members will go to trial next week for the 2011 hazing death of gay drum major Robert Champion, Jr.

Three years ago, The 26-year-old was subjected to a brutal hazing ritual called 'crossing bus C.'

It involved band members beating him with punches, kicks, drumsticks, mallets while on a bus parked in a Orlando, Florida hotel parking lot.

October 24, 2014

A thriving gayborhood, east-facing beaches, the World AIDS museum and LGBTI-specific retirement homes are just a few reasons Fort Lauderdale deserves your attention

As we clutch our imaginary pearls every time we hear of a favorite gay bar closing in New York and Los Angeles, we also have reasons to throw our handbags in the air: New gay-owned and gay-friendly businesses are opening up in Fort Lauderdale every day, and with good reason.

Fort Lauderdale, a popular destination with LGBTI visitors since the 1970s for the region’s tropical climate and laid-back locals, is a city where the demand for LGBTI business is booming.

July 17, 2014

Three gay friends spending a long weekend in Naples found, among many things, humid streets, attractive architecture and oddly erotic statues

An Italian, a German and a London gay man found themselves in the streets of Naples for the annual Gay Pride celebration.

The biggest city in southern Italy gets quite hot in the summer, but our travelers were keen to scope out the tastes and sights of Napoli.

Before and after the parade, the three men (including our GSN team member Marcus James) took to the streets of Naples in search of some legendary pasta (or pizza) and to check out the tourism spots.

So what was Naples like for our three amigos?

June 24, 2014

A Florida HIV group that benefits from White Party Miami sales is disappointed Gay Days Fort Lauderdale has been scheduled for the same Thanksgiving weekend

Not everyone is happy Gay Days has announced Fort Lauderdale as the latest city to join its week-long pool party and DJ line-up.

Many Florida businesses are looking forward to the 15,000 LGBTI fans who will descend on the Florida city, infusing an estimated $18 million (€13 million) into the local economy.

But local HIV and AIDS organization Care Resource CEO Rick Siclari is disappointed the event is scheduled for the same weekend as White Party Miami, an event whose sales contribute to Care Resource.

June 11, 2014

Whether or not going nude is your thing, our guide on where to whet your palate and gay it up in Florida's island city is sure to get you excited

Visiting Key West feels like you’re in another world unto itself.

Maybe it's the mix of city life and island vibes, a balance so difficult to get right yet one Key West pulls off with poise.

Maybe it’s the inspiring tropical landscape, a mix of deep green foliage, shimmering blue waters and bursts of color from flowers and buildings that rivals the universal rainbow flags just about everywhere in sight.

March 29, 2014

'You did wrong ... you must pay the consequences for what you did'

A former Florida A&M band member will spend 51 weeks in jail for the hazing death of gay drum major Robert Champion.

Yesterday, 28 March, Jessie Baskin heard his punishment after a three-hour hearing that included character witnesses and letters  for leniency.

March 6, 2014

The world’s most profitable companies including Hilton, Macy's and Nickelodeon are sponsors of Family Outfest, a weeklong party for same-sex parents, their kids and ally families

Florida is welcoming gay and straight families with an inaugural event for households needing a holiday.

Orlando is hosting Family Outfest this July, in what is being called one of the first corporate-sponsored events aimed at gay and straight families.

Disney has just been named as the latest in a string of event sponsors already including Hilton Hotels, Macy's and Nickelodeon Suites Resorts.

Organizers are calling Family Outfest: ‘The first of its kind.

January 24, 2014

David Hanson's impersonation of Sushi the drag queen at the Gay Star Beach Party won him a tour for two around Florida's Key West and accommodations in the Waldorf Astoria Casa Marina Resort

Every New Year's Eve in Key West, Sushi the drag queen dons a fabulous gown, one she's been preparing all year, as she settles into a life-size, glittery red high heel.

The drag queen version of the Times Square midnight ball drop, Sushi is lowered from the top floor of the Bourbon Street Pub as the crowd below counts down to the New Year. At midnight, Sushi kicks off the celebrations by popping a bottle of champagne all over the revelers.

January 22, 2014

An 18-year-old Florida high school student who was suspended after he was bullied for appearing in a gay porn video has been reinstated and will graduate after an online backlash and his story going national

18-year-old Florida high school student Robert Merucci has had his suspension from school lifted after a backlash against the school authorities who suspended him after he was bullied at school for appearing in gay porn.

Merucci appeared in a series of videos for porn company Sean Cody after turning 18 in order to help support his family but when word got out at his Cocoa High School he was bullied by a group of students.

January 21, 2014

An 18-year-old Florida High School student was bullied by fellow classmates after they discovered he’d been paid to perform in a porn video but the school decided to suspend him instead of them – causing him to fail his high school diploma

An 18 year-old high school student in Brevard County, Florida was suspended last week after he was bullied by a group of fellow students after they discovered he’d appeared in a gay porn video.

‘Noel’ (not his real name) had made a video for porn company Sean Cody to earn money to help his mother with financial problems but someone who knew him must have seen it as word soon got around his Cocoa High School.

July 5, 2013

Man shouts gay slurs before shooting St Pete Pride parade spectator in the leg with a BB gun

A man shouting gay slurs shot a spectator in the leg with a BB gun at the largest Pride parade in Florida last Saturday. 

Cornelius Davis, 20, was arrested and held on a $100,000 bail (€77,000) for shooting at people attending St Pete Parade from a bar's second floor window in St Petersburg near Tampa, eastern Florida.

The victim, Eric, who did not give his last name, is pushing for Davis to be charged with a hate crime.

June 8, 2013

After getting house arrest for Robert Champion's death, defendants promise to combat hazing

For the death of a gay Florida A&M University student, two defendants get to stay home.

Yesterday (7 June) in an Orange County Circuit courtroom, former FAMU drum majors Rikki Wills and Shawn Turner admitted they were on the bus in 2011 November when fellow drum major Robert Champion died. The 26-year-old was subjected to a brutal hazing ritual called 'crossing bus c.' It involved band members pummeling him with punches, kicks and drumsticks.

February 28, 2013

World Out Games 2017 has been awarded to Miami Beach

Reykjavík or Miami Beach? It’s a tough choice but that’s the decision that the World Out Games have been grappling with today at their meeting in Antwerp.

After site visits to both cities, delegates from as far afield as Los Angeles, Mexico, Manchester, Australia and Tonga gathered together for final presentations, deliberations, and a vote - which has ultimately gone the way of Miami Beach.

November 14, 2012

Educator in Florida, US, appeals for help after investigation into her conduct left her career in tatters

A teacher in Florida, US, is fighting against accusations that she turned a student into a lesbian.

The stepfather of a student at Deerfield Beach High School allegedly began harrassing his stepdaughter on Twitter last year after discovering she was gay.

When teacher Juliet Hibbs reported the parent for child abuse and cyberbullying, the 18-year-old pupil was told by a counselor she was not legally required to stay at home and moved out.

November 2, 2012

'Come as you are' to America's southernmost point which is so liberated, clothes and hang-ups are optional

Checking in at Key West’s Island House gay resort was a bit like arriving at a fancy dress party without a costume. Only the suits being worn at this popular ‘clothing optional’ hotel were the ones the guests were born with.

I’d never considered myself reserved but being forced to make idle chatter about the weather with a fully nude gentleman’s crown jewels dangling pendulously within eyeshot turned out to be the perfect barometer for how prudishly British I really am.

October 10, 2012

Art Deco elegance provides the perfect frosting for SoBe's moreish cake of glam, glitz and hedonistic silliness

You know that image you’ve got in your head when you think of Miami? Sun, sand, bright, shiny sports cars and Margheritas so big they have a gravitational force of their own? Yup, it really is like that.

It’s not often a city lives up to expectations, but Florida’s southeastern metropolis really does do what it says on the tin.

October 2, 2012

Gay Star News meets Steve Adkins, president of Miami’s Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce

With over 600 members, the Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce in the Miami-Dade region is one of the few commercial LGBT organizations of its kind in the US.

Steve Adkins has been CEO and president since 2005, successfully steering the growth of the Chamber to become one of the leading business and tourism advocates in South Florida.

Originally from San Diego, Adkins moved to Miami in 1999 and now sees it as his adopted home.

September 25, 2012

Planning your holidays around your favorite gay sports? Here’s GSN’s guide to what’s in store

The world of LGBT sport is increasingly busy, with an ever-growing number of national and international single and multi-sport tournaments on offer.

One of the key drivers for this is the tourism value that can be created by an LGBT sports tournament, and major cities around the world are actively supporting local clubs and organizations to host events and attract international visitors.

September 13, 2012

Robert Champion's parents blast school for its remarks

Florida A&M University said in court papers filed this week that the drum major in their marching band 'should have refused to participate' in the hazing that resulted in his death after a football game last November.

The University is seeking to have a wrongful death lawsuit brought by the parents of 26 year old Robert Champion dismissed. Thirteen fellow students have been charged in the death but the university maintains it is not responsible.