poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Sunday, May 30, 2004

Gray and Gay? These Communities Want You
By Lee Hockstader
Washington Post Staff Writer

PALMETTO, Fla. -- Amid the flowering bougainvillea, whooshing sprinklers and croaking snapping turtles, it's easy to forget that the Palms of Manasota is no ordinary, sun-soaked Florida retirement community of tanned seniors in shorts padding around tile-roofed villas.

"It's just wonderful to be able to take a walk and hold hands," said Edward Kobee, 69, a burly retired naval weapons systems analyst who moved to the Palms last December from Laurel, Md.

His partner of 17 years nodded his agreement. "We didn't want to go back in the closet just to be in a retirement community," said Alfred Usack, 73, a retired CIA analyst with a trim white mustache who lived in the Washington area for 46 years. "We'd had enough of that."

As one of a handful of retirement communities for gays and lesbians built in the past few years, the Palms, set amid citrus groves and tomato-packing plants south of St. Petersburg, is a quiet, calm place -- conservative, its residents insist. It is also a trailblazer, and a precursor.


Spurned gay chorus invited to sing at Kravis
By Sarah Prohaska, Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

After a month at the center of a dispute with a West Palm Beach Catholic school, The Voices of Pride gay men's chorus will make its debut performance after all -- and this time, the group will take the stage at one of South Florida's premier concert halls.

The chorus is scheduled to perform at the Kravis Center at 7:30 p.m. June 16.

The 30-man chorus originally planned, and sold more than 500 tickets, for debut performances May 14 and 15 at the Machlin Memorial Theatre at Rosarian Academy on North Flagler Drive. The group had used the school's music room for rehearsals since October.


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