Happening in Kansas City
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I’m usually really good about doing my research before making a big decision. Now, we’re not talking scouring the papers for the coupon that will save me 25 cents on that exorbitantly priced bottle of lube (try Target’s store brand), but I’m known for at least a little due diligence.
When I made the call to move back to Kansas City after 13 years in Washington, DC, now that was no small decision! I had lived my entire adult life in the nation’s capital and the concept of living somewhere else was, quite frankly, a little scary.
I wasn’t concerned about living in Kansas City, but more about “living” in Kansas City. How would I make friends? Where would I hang out? Would I meet a boyfriend? (which really translates to “Will I get laid?”) I came out in DC and, for good or bad, was established. I knew where all the bars were, attended the gay networking functions, and was a fixture in the community.
This move was no small change! Fortunately, I connected with the right people in Kansas City fast. Serendipity, ships passing in the night—I’ll never know. But had that connection not taken place, I might have been doomed to a social life limited to karaoke at Missie B’s!
What I learned from my new “friend” was that Kansas City has more than its share of gay bars—more per capita than most smaller cities. But, the “scene” in Kansas City is centered around the fundraisers that all get scheduled within a few weeks of each other each Spring. It turns out that Kansas City is a town with a cause…well, lots of causes as long as there is a party involved and that where the MEN are!
There’s HIV/AIDS housing, health care services, meals for the homeless, anti-violence, gay rights, the list goes on and on and on. And, in Kansas City, each cause is obligated to throw two to three fabulous parties to raise funds. I’m not sure how many regulars on the fundraiser “circuit” have actually delivered meals to homebound AIDS patients or passed out blankets to the homeless, but I suppose we all make a difference in our way. So we’re raising a glass to remember all those who have fallen. It seems strange, but at least needed funds are getting to those most in need.
Yes, if you’re looking for some of the city’s most eligible bachelors then you need to be on the “circuit.” You’re most likely to find a handsome, fit, successful man who looks great in a tux at one of the many events of Kansas City’s gay mating season.
This year was no exception, as hundreds of gorgeous men donned black tie for the Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS (DIFFA) Dining by Design. Imagine a convention hall converted into the sets of some of the film industry’s greatest flicks. From Titanic to Moulin Rouge to Breakfast at Tiffany’s, each themed table was completely over the top! Plenty of prospects to be had there!
If black tie isn’t your thing, try the Union Hill Parties, a series of festive open house parties in that cute hilltop neighborhood to benefit the annual AIDS Walk. It’s more casual and offers a peak into some of Kansas City’s fabulous homes. Many of the hosts are straight, but there are always a couple of gay homes that are completely over the top! My experience has been that if a boy can decorate, he probably takes pretty good care of himself, too.
If art is your thing, then Good Samaritan Project’s Corks and Canvas party might be your thing. It’s a mixed crowd, but still a great way to meet men while sipping wine and perusing the silent auction items. If you’re really lucky, you might land one of the local artists who regularly donate pieces to the auction. You might even end up with a custom piece for your wall.
One of the biggest parties of the year is Bloom!, an annual benefit for the Kansas City Free Health Clinic. This year didn’t disappoint as the party celebrated cowboy themes made so popular by the movie Brokeback Mountain.
Your odds are always going be good at one of these events, but if you really want to narrow things down, go to the patron parties. In most cases, for as little as $75 - $100 above the standard ticket price, you can buy a ticket to the patron party, an exclusive party usually held a few days before the main event. Let’s just say the odds of meeting an eligible Kansas City bachelor go way up at these events and even if you don’t meet Mr. Right, you’re probably going to enjoy lots of great food and wine.
But, gay mating season has passed, hasn’t it? True, all of these events happened within a narrow window in the Spring, but fortunately, Kansas Citians like their parties (and they’re all for a good cause, remember?). Over the next couple of months, plan to attend some of these events:
Good Samaritan Project’s A Gourmet Dinner - Moulin Rouge (June 10)
kicks off the summer fundraiser season at Country Club Congregational UCC. If you’re a foodie, then the colorful French menu will provide the inspiration for conversation with that intriguing potential date seated at your table. For information, go to www.gspkc.org.
One Voice (June 24) is a new benefit for the Heartland Men’s Chorus at the American Jazz Museum in the Historic 18th and Vine District. This event will feature a performance by R&B diva Oleta Adams and will benefit the chorus and the Paseo Academy for Performing and Fine Arts. For tickets, go to www.hmckc.org.
The Gatsby Party (July 15) will celebrate the Kansas City Free Health Clinic’s 35th Anniversary with a “Roaring ‘20s” cocktail party at KC Magazine’s fabulous 2006 Home of the Year. For tickets, go to www.kcfree.org/gatsby.
One of my favorite events is Corroborree (September 8), the annual fundraiser for SAVE Inc., Kansas City’s HIV/AIDS housing agency. The Kansas City Zoo serves as a unique and appropriate setting for this Australian-themed party. If the weather holds out, this is definitely one of the most fun parties of the year! For information, go to www.saveinckc.org.
So where did the events of gay mating season get me, you ask? Well, at the 2005 Corks and Canvas, I did happen to meet a wonderful guy and we dated for eight months. Not bad for one night and I’m not sure I would have had the same result if I had opted to hang out at one of the bars instead. And besides, it’s all for a good cause anyway.
After the last 2 years of dealing with the pandemic and packing on those COVID pounds here are some motivational quotes that can be the spark plugs to our wellness engines. You can have a full tank of gas, a clean carburetor, all the fluids topped off, and 300 horsepower of Detroit’s finest under the hood, but you’re going nowhere without that initial spark. In your quest for well-being, you need a catalyst to move you from idle to ideal. Here are some motivational jolts to inspire you to get your health and fitness vehicle moving.
Make time for exercise each dayPhoto by Victor Freitas on Unsplash
Thomas Paine said, “The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.” You will have conflicts with making time for exercise each day. The treadmill will conflict with your enjoyment of the living-room couch and its fluffy pillows. Your body will engage in conflict with dumbbells and exercise balls as it seeks better health. Embrace these conflicts with excitement, and walk through the smoke and fire. Triumph is waiting on the other side.
Marathon runnersPhoto by Miguel A. Amutio on Unsplash
John F. Kennedy said, “Things do not happen. Things are made to happen.” The firefighter’s 55-pound weight loss did not just happen one day on a call. The computer programmer’s success in the Chicago Marathon did not just happen on a Sunday in October. The 4th grade teacher’s significant drop in cholesterol level did not just happen the day before spring break. These people made things happen…and it took time.
Ralph Marston of The Daily Motivator website, wrote, “What you do today can improve all your tomorrows.” Let today be the first day in 28 years without a cigarette. Stay an extra five minutes on the recumbent bike at the gym today. Start training today for the three-day breast cancer walk that is scheduled for the fall. Tomorrow is always waiting to see what you put in your piggy bank today. Invest wisely and watch the dividends grow.
Full MoonPhoto by CHUTTERSNAP on Unsplash
Jill McLemore once said, “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you will land amongst the stars.” Set that goal to trim 75 pounds from your body. Only losing 42 pounds puts you way out there with the North Star. Aim to run 750 miles this year. Coming up 68 miles short will still put you past that former planet Pluto and on your way to the Orion constellation. Dropping eight waist sizes by Christmas instead of the projected 10 will let you glow with the luminescence of several brilliant wonders in the sky. By the way, I think there’s a full moon tonight!
Zig Ziglar stated, “You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.” Tom Cruise was another aspiring pretty face in Hollywood about 30 years ago before starting to audition for parts in TV shows. Jared Fogle was a morbidly obese college student at Indiana University in the 1990s before beginning his Subway diet. Mark Zuckerberg was just another starry-eyed Ivy Leaguer until he began to implement a social network idea. They all have that common bond: They started something.
These motivational quotes should help get your wellness engine running and once your car is started there’s no telling where your health and fitness can go. Don't forget to end me a postcard when you get there!
This health and fitness article is brought to you by that guy who’s sneaky like a black hole and bright like a nebula. My name is Ron Blake and I can be found playing with my telescope at email@example.com.
Curative has announced that it is currently providing COVID-19 no-cost testing in your area at Metropolitan Community College.
Stay safe and get tested!
You can schedule COVID-19 Test at curative.com, and receive results in 24-48 hours.
Curative is the leading provider of COVID-19 testing in the United States. Curative’s mission is to end the COVID-19 pandemic by providing simple-to-use and painless testing at scale to produce reliable data for patients and health officials. We know that broad access to testing, robust contact tracing, and a vaccine are necessary to end the pandemic.
Is there any cost?
Regarding the tests, there is no out of pocket cost to the individual. Through the CARES act, all individuals with health insurance will be covered for a COVID-19 test. No one is ever charged a copay or deductible.
For uninsured individuals, they are covered under the HRSA fund under the CARES act. Curative will never send a bill to any individual getting a COVID-19 test through any of our testing sites.
How soon do I get the results?
Curative provides results within 24 hours of arrival at our lab (if not sooner). We pride ourselves on our ability to distribute tests rapidly, test patients easily, and send them their results quickly. Other highlights include:
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Please visit curative.com to schedule your no-cost appointment TODAY at a site nearest to you. Together we can end this pandemic!
Curative believes that communal well-being is fundamental to individual health.
Curative is building infrastructure to make essential health services easier to access for everyone. Their infrastructure is designed to change as the world does—offering nearby access, affordable services, and science-based guidance.
Their efforts are supported by the optimism and ambition we share with communities across the US, and together we’re imagining new ways to help more people stay safe, healthy, and informed wherever they are.
“I wish I could work out, too, but I just don’t have the motivation!”
Give me a dollar for every time I’ve heard that and I’d be in Cabo San Lucas with an umbrella drink right now. Let’s identify a few of your motivations to get you on the right path. They are there … you just need to realize them so you can make it a great 2022.
How about getting healthy so you can be at that Christmas celebration in 30 years with all the family gathered around and exchanging presents? There will be nieces, nephews, brothers, sisters, children and maybe some grandchildren, all enjoying the sounds and sights of the season. That would be amazing!
How about being healthy so you can watch the first man land on Mars in 2030? You hear all the talk about preparing for a mission to Mars, but it will be a long time in coming. Just think if you were alive and well to see it happen!
How about being healthy so you can attend that 60-year class reunion? It might even be nice to walk into the function with a spring in your step and a glow of health about you! Many of your classmates will have walked past St. Peter and those pearly gates by that time, but you can give yourself a chance to stay here with some proactive measures.
How about being healthy so you can spend more time being relaxed and retired? It would be awesome to just not have to do anything you didn’t want to do! Get up every day and use that watch they gave you as a fashion accessory only. With a healthy body, you can spend ample time in the lap of leisure well into your 90s.
How about being healthy so you can walk your dog with your grandkids or great-nephews after that Thanksgiving meal many years down the road? It will be so cool to have that turkey dinner with all the relatives, but it’ll be even more fun to be able to move around without having to catch your breath between steps.
How about being healthy so you can continue to enjoy vibrant sunsets, thrilling football games, colorful leaves in the fall, summer barbecues, or birthday cards in the mail?
Everyone can find the motivation to work out! You just have to identify which motivation will get you to your starting line each day and which will help you get to your daily finish line.
There are plenty of great things to enjoy in life. Find your motivation and start earning your frequent flyer miles for your healthy life. Then soar into the future with excitement about what will be!
This article of motivation is brought to you by a guy who knows a good thing when he sees it. That guy of good vision is Ron Blake, and he can be spotted on that bright horizon at firstname.lastname@example.org.