Your Community, Your Voice

By Staff, February 2018 Issue.

Each year, the Echo Magazine recognizes your community favorites. From local leaders and performers to staged productions and places to wine and dine, we rely on you to tell us who is deserving of this honor.

This year, marks our first-ever presenting partnership, making these the 2018 Echo Readers’ Choice Awards presented by Smirnoff. We thank you for your nominations this year and we invite you to cast your votes at:

  1. FUNdraiser: Which local charity fundraising event best puts the FUN in fundraising?

  1. Get Involved: Tell us your favorite LGBTQ non-profit organization or cause to be a part of.

  1. Mark Your Calendar: Which community event or festival is on your can’t-miss list?

  1. Mind Your Business: Tell us where you’ve found the best professional development, self-improvement and/or networking resources (group, course, school).

  1. Local Trailblazer: They lead. They fundraise. They volunteer. They organize. They do it all. Now we want you to nominate them!

  1. Amazing Ally: LGBTQ allies are everywhere. We wouldn’t be the community we are today without them. It’s time to recognize the best of the best and thank them for taking a stand with us and for us!

  1. Dazzling Advertiser: For more than 26 years, our advertisers have made Echo possible (and kept it free to you). Now it’s time to congratulate them on a job well done – meaning, we want to know which ad campaign (featured in our pages) wowed you the most!

  1. Politically Correct: This is your ballot to let us know which elected official, political movement or campaign had the biggest impact on you throughout the past year!

  1. What A Drag … Queen: They volunteer, they fundraise, they entertain and they’re not afraid to tell it like it is, now tell us which drag queen does it all the best.

  1. What A Drag … King: They volunteer, they fundraise, they entertain and they’re not afraid to tell it like it is, now tell us which drag king does it all the best.

  1. The Star of the (Drag) Show: There’s a lot more to putting together a drag show than meets the eye (contouring, for one). Week after week, where do you take your dollar bills?

  1. Down For The Crown: When it comes to seeing local titleholders pass down the crown, which pageant do you score a perfect 10?

  1. Raise the Bar: Whether it’s trivia, karaoke, darts or dance, our local bars serve as much more than just watering holes. Now it’s time to nominate your favorite!

  1. Happiest Happy Hour: Where do you prefer to stop and wet your whistle before heading home from a long day at work?

  1. Someone’s Going To Score: Whether it’s coverage of the Olympics or a weekly Sunday (football) Funday, we’re looking for the sports bar you’d bet on.

  1. Just Dance: Whether you twerk, two-step or tango, on which dance floor are you most likely to be found working it?

  1. Savor Local Flavor: You don’t have to be a professional foodie to let us know the most delicious spot to wine and dine

  1. But First, Brunch: No weekend is complete without a stellar brunch spread, so where are you most likely to be found sipping mimosas?

  1. Late-Night Bites: Some nights call for a second dinner (no judgment), and we want to know which dining destination do you head to after last call?

  1. Master Mixologist: They know your name and, more importantly, your favorite drink. Here’s a tip: Show them some love with a nomination here.

  1. Get Your Art On: We want to know the best places for taking in all forms of creative expression (galleries, museums, events, venues, shows or the artists themselves).

  1. Retail Therapy: From retail and services to entertainment and accommodations, where is the best place to spend your money locally?

  1. It’s A Group Thing: Where do you go for fellowship, support, community and/or spirituality (groups, meet-ups, congregations).

  1. Get Sweaty: Everyone has a favorite local LGBTQ team, athlete, gym, sporting event or league, and we want to know yours.

  1. Greatest Hits: Whether you’re into live shows or streaming the sounds of the underground, which local musical group or band is No. 1 on your charts? 

  1. I’m in Love with The DJ: No party is complete without one, yet they never get the spotlight … until now. Which DJ makes your heart spin?

  1. Star of the Show: Which local staged production, podcasts, YouTube channels or other non-drag/non-concert performances brings out the fanatic in you?

  1. Take The Stage: From hosts/hostesses and emcees to co-chairs and event promoters, we want you to nominate the folks who make it all come together.

Keep reading Show less

National Margarita Day

A lot of us have really picked up an interest in tequila and it's no wonder. Its popularity is soaring in the U.S. and doesn't look like it'll be slowing down any time soon. The only contender would probably be whiskey. Meh, but they have their own day. Now, it's National Margarita Day and we put together some of the best margarita recipes around so you can pick one or maybe even all of them to try.

We have a few surprises in there too. Maybe it's not all about tequila but it certainly has a theme going on. Take a look at some of these great tequila brands and start making some amazing margaritas today!

Keep reading Show less
Photo by Scott Webb on Unsplash

Gender-Inclusive Universities and Student Privacy

For many students, attending university is a profound, often life-changing, transition. It is often the student’s first time living on their own without parental supervision. This lifestyle is also accompanied by a period of self-discovery, of defining and redefining a sense of personal identity largely independent of the influence of family and friends from home.

For students who are members of the LGBTQ+ community, this rite of passage can also be a deeply empowering one. Indeed, attending university may be the student’s first real opportunity to explore their gender identity in a safe, comfortable, and accepting college.

Keep reading Show less

José Cuervo's Reserva de la Familia agave fields

Disclaimer: My trip was provided courtesy of a press trip but all opinions about the trip and events are my own. Please note there are affiliate links and at no additional cost to you, I may earn a commission if you make a purchase.

I had the opportunity to visit Mexico for an event José Cuervo was putting on, the unveiling of their premium tequila brand, Reserva de la Familia. The trip was all about tequila, how to drink it properly, how to pair it with food, and of course, visiting various points of interest in Guadalajara while tasting tequila along the way.

Keep reading Show less