Roll Credits

By Hans Pedersen, October 2017 Web Exclusive.

There's a scene in The Sound of Music when the Von Trapp children line up during a party and belt out a memorable musical number that's suitable for situations when it's time to bid folks "So long, Farewell."

That sequence comes to mind as I announce I am stepping down as movie critic at Echo Magazine, but I certainly hope to make future contributions to this amazing publication when my schedule allows.

While I've been writing for Echo since late 2011, I became the movie critic four years ago, and I am truly grateful to have written for a magazine that supports and affirms our LGBTQ community.

Admittedly, very few gigs also give people the chance to attend film festivals and interview their idols – Olympia Dukakis, George Takei or director Roger Ross Williams (God Loves Uganda), to name a few. But I have also met some of the most extraordinary people here in the Valley over the course of writing for Echo Magazine.

Yet, I am most grateful for the ways in which I have been educated about the transgender community, especially through interview opportunities about such inventive documentaries as My Prairie Home and Real Boy, and such extraordinary dramas as Boy Meets Girl.

One recurring bit of advice I have gleaned from these interviews: to stop thinking too much and start doing.

So, after hearing various directors explain how they launched their own documentary projects, I am heeding their advice and joining two friends to launch production on a new film. It's a documentary about growing up in the Sanctuary movement in Tucson in the 1980s: life as a teenager was about watching MTV, coming out of the closet, living with Central Americans who faced death squads back home and regularly helping my mom and church volunteers smuggle these political refugees up from the border. I'll keep folks updated on this documentary project, tentatively entitled A Coyote's Tale, on Twitter at @HansP10.

While I do not intend to vanish from these pages for good, I am eager to see the work of the new movie critic, Valley-based actor-turned-filmmaker James Fanniza. It’s always good to see things from a fresh perspective.

For now, it's time to say, "Adieu, adieu, to you and you and you ..."

Keep readingShow less
WhistlePig + Alfa Romeo F1

SHOREHAM, VT (September 13, 2023) — WhistlePig Whiskey, the leaders in independent craft whiskey, and Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake are waving the checkered flag on a legend-worthy release that’s taking whiskey to G-Force levels. The Limited Edition PiggyBack Legends Series: Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake Barrel is a high Rye Whiskey selected by the Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake drivers, with barrels trialed in their wind tunnel to ensure a thrilling taste in every sip.

The third iteration in WhistlePig’s Single Barrel PiggyBack Legends Series, the Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake Barrel is bottled at 96.77 proof, a nod to Valtteri Bottas’ racing number, 77, and the precision of racing. Inspired by Zhou Guanyu, the first Chinese F1 driver, this Rye Whiskey is finished with lychee and oolong tea. Herbal and floral notes of the oolong tea complement the herbaceous notes of WhistlePig’s signature PiggyBack 100% Rye, rounded out with a juicy tropical fruit finish and a touch of spice.

Keep readingShow less
by Spectrum Medical Care Center

Nurse Practitioner Ari Kravitz

When I started medical transition at 20 years old, it was very difficult to get the care I needed for hormone replacement therapy because there are very few providers trained in starting hormones for trans people, even though it’s very similar to the hormones that we prescribe to women in menopause or cisgender men with low testosterone.

I hope more providers get trained in LGBTQ+ healthcare, so they can support patients along their individual gender journey, and provide the info needed to make informed decisions about their body. I’ve personally seen my trans patients find hope and experience a better quality of life through hormone replacement therapy.

Keep readingShow less

Descanso Resort swimming pool and lounge area

Descanso Resort, Palm Springs' premier destination for gay men, just received Tripadvisor's highest honor, a Travelers' Choice "Best of the Best" award for 2023. Based on guests' reviews and ratings, fewer than 1% of Tripadvisor's 8 million listings around the world receive the coveted "Best of the Best" designation. Descanso ranked 12th in the top 25 small inns and hotels category in the United States. Quite an accomplishment!

Open less than two years, Descanso Resort offers gay men a relaxing and luxurious boutique hotel experience just minutes away from Palm Springs' buzziest restaurants, nightclubs, and shopping. Descanso has quickly established itself as a top destination for sophisticated gay travelers, earning hundreds of 5-star guest reviews and consistently ranking in Trapadvisor's top positions alongside brother properties Santiago Resort and Twin Palms Resort.

Keep readingShow less