Confessions of a ‘plantaholic’

Posted: September 15th, 2017 | Features, Profiles, Top Story | No Comments

By Ken Williams | Contributing Editor

Jim Bishop calls himself a “plantaholic.” His friends will toast him — maybe even teasingly roast him — for that.

Over the past six years, Bishop has served as president of the San Diego Horticultural Society. He stepped down from that leadership position last month, following his talk about “My Life with Plants: Confessions of a Plantaholic” at the August meeting of the society.

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When we RISE

Posted: September 15th, 2017 | Features, Profiles, Top Story | 1 Comment

By Joyell Nevins

Relationships. Impact. Sustainability. Excellence.

These are core pillars of the RISE San Diego nonprofit, founded three years ago by professionals, politicians and community activists Tony Young and Dwayne Crenshaw.

“We’re an odd couple of sorts,” Crenshaw said, laughing. “He’s an outside table at Starbucks and I’m an inside table.”

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Hillcrest gets aggressive

Posted: September 15th, 2017 | News, Top Story | 6 Comments

By Morgan M. Hurley | Editor

With the news of Downtown San Diego’s sudden and recent outbreak of Hepatitis A — which has infected 400 people, killing 14, mostly in the homeless community — Gay San Diego decided to catch up with the Hillcrest Business Association (HBA), and find out how our neighborhood can rise above the dire situation facing Downtown residents.

It’s widely known that Hillcrest residents and business owners have noticed an uptick in vagrancy in recent years and on numerous occasions some people have experienced aggressive behavior. It is a common topic of conversation among friends and colleagues and has often been an agenda item at Hillcrest resident and business group meetings.

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Politics: DACA reactions

Posted: September 15th, 2017 | Featured, News | No Comments

San Diego area lawmakers reacted to the Trump administration’s announcement on Sept. 5 that it would end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) but would give Congress six months to possibly do something.

Here are their statements.

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Gay News Briefs – Sept. 15, 2017

Posted: September 15th, 2017 | Gay News Briefs, News, Opinion & News | No Comments


The third annual Taste of South Park on Saturday, Sept. 16, is a food lover’s chance to enjoy delicious bites from participating restaurants in the neighborhood.

From featured dishes to popular appetizers, entrees or desserts, the Taste of South Park will give each passport holder the opportunity to walk and taste their way through South Park. Hours are noon to 4 p.m.

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Cooking in transition

Posted: September 1st, 2017 | Features, Food & Drink, Top Story | No Comments

By Frank Sabatini Jr.

In an industry dominated by men, Dominick Scott knows what it’s like climbing the culinary ladder as a woman.

Before recently landing the position as head chef at The Glass Door, located on the fourth floor of Little Italy’s Porto Vista Hotel, the 31-year-old Serra Mesa resident identified as female.

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Design stage for AIDS memorial

Posted: September 1st, 2017 | Cover stories, Featured, News | No Comments

By Morgan M. Hurley | Editor

The San Diego AIDS Memorial, meant as a “lasting tribute” to the 8,000 San Diegans who have been lost to AIDS, just got a lot closer to reality.

On Monday, Aug. 28, the San Diego AIDS Memorial Task Force committee, co-chaired by City Commissioner Nicole Murray Ramirez and Katherine Faulconer, had a community meeting at St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral in Bankers Hill.

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Popping his cherry

Posted: September 1st, 2017 | Arts & Entertainment, Features, Film, Top Story | No Comments

By Ken Williams | Contributing Editor

Born and raised in the Middle East, Assaad Yacoub didn’t have any exposure to the bedazzled world of drag queens. It wasn’t until he moved to the United States seven years ago that the young filmmaker learned about the courageous men who strap it up, tuck it under, and don glamorous gowns and tall wigs to create the outlandish female characters that entertain us in clubs, on television and at the movies.

It was love at first sight.

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Gay News Briefs – Sept. 1, 2017

Posted: September 1st, 2017 | Gay News Briefs, News, Opinion & News | No Comments


The 42nd annual Nicky Awards, presented by the Imperial Court de San Diego and named after international LGBT activist Nicole Murray Ramirez, will be held Dec. 3. The organization has also announced a new producer of the popular awards, deemed “the gay Academy Awards of San Diego” by Channel 10 News.

“We are very proud to announce Ebony Burnett Mullins as the first woman producer of the Nicky Awards,” said Big Mike Phillips, the 2017 president of the Nicky Awards’ board of governors. “She has generously offered to produce the Nicky Awards with new changes and a fresh start.”

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The ‘South Park blueberry girls’

Posted: August 18th, 2017 | Features, News, Top Story | 1 Comment

By Morgan M. Hurley | Editor

On July 3, South Bark Dog Wash, home of the “blueberry facial” and more than 128,000 dog baths, was broken into for the second time in six months after more than 16 years incident-free.

Its owners, Donna Walker and Lisa Vella, who have grown the small business leaps and bounds in its nearly 17 years as a member of the South Park neighborhood, aren’t angry, they’re sad. But they have been buoyed and inspired by the local community that has always had their back.

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Emboldened despite anarchy

Posted: August 18th, 2017 | News, Top Story | No Comments

By Morgan M. Hurley | Editor

On Saturday, Aug. 12, HRC San Diego held its sixth annual gala dinner and auction at Hotel del Coronado. It was the second gala in two years hosted at the Hotel del, and the first since the Trump administration took office in January.

Widely supported by the national Human Rights Campaign (HRC) organization, as well as the Los Angeles Chapter of HRC, the event was a great success, and titled RISE, focused on themes of resistance, unity and the continued march forward to full equality.

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Hillcrest’s piano wench

Posted: August 18th, 2017 | Arts & Entertainment, Features, Music, Top Story | No Comments

In 2001, Curtis began her 15-year stint at Martinis Above Fourth, where she experienced three ownership changes over the years. She recalled that the first Friday night she was asked to perform was Sept. 14, 2001 — just days after the 9/11 terrorist attack in New York City. She wasn’t sure if the bar would even be open and whether there would be a crowd, but she came in to work anyway. Though many businesses had closed that week after the largest attack on U.S. soil, many bars — including Martinis — had remained open, serving as places of refuge, and Curtis fell in love with her new venue right away.

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Community mourns death of Meldon ‘Mel’ Merrill

Posted: August 18th, 2017 | Features, News, Top Story | No Comments

By Ken Williams | Contributing Editor

San Diegans are mourning the loss of Meldon “Mel” Merrill, one of the pillars of the local LGBT community, who died Aug. 10. He was 80 years old.

Mr. Merrill is survived by his husband, David Ramos. They were celebrating their one-year anniversary on Aug. 5 when Mr. Merrill fell ill and was hospitalized, Ramos told Gay San Diego.

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Gay News Briefs – Aug. 18, 2017

Posted: August 18th, 2017 | Gay News Briefs, News, Opinion & News | No Comments


On Sunday, Aug. 20, The San Diego LGBT Community Center, San Diego LGBT Pride, and other social justice groups will be holding a rally at the Hillcrest Pride Flag on Normal Street at University Avenue, from 4-5 p.m.

Called the United Intersections of Justice Rally Against Hate (against anti-Semitism, against racism, against homophobia; against transphobia; against Islamophobia; against sexism), the peaceful rally is in response to recent events in Charlottesville, Virginia.

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