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January 2013

January 30, 2013

Community Shout-Out on "The Daily Beast"

RU12? recieved a 'tip of the hat' on Andrew Sullivan's blog on the Daily Beast (a company merged with Newsweek). In his "The View From Your Window" contest, a photo is shown and readers guess the location. The photo from the most recent contest:


Hmm, that looks familiar!

This is what one reader had to say:

You may be interested to know that the RU12 Community Center is located in the building from which the photo was likely taken.  ("RU12? Community Center celebrates, educates and advocates with and for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) Vermonters," - They are a truly great resource for us Vermonters, but that isn't the view from their window.  RU12? is on the lower level on the western side of the Champlain Mill.   This photo appears to have been taken from one of the top two floors farther east.  That's as close as I can get!

Thanks for the shout-out!


A Presidential Affair: Peep Show Follow Up Statement

Below is a statement released by the producers of Peep Show outlining their purpose and responding to comments made by their co-emcee at their last event. RU12? was a beneficiary of the evening and truly appreciates the work of Peep Show and their commitment to and support of our community. 


Peep Show strives to perform a queer-friendly, sex-positive and above all, inclusive space. At our last show, some of the co-emcee’s comments were out of line and racist. Since the performance, we have had several productive discussions with our emcees and community members. We understand how these statements made audience members upset and were humbled by the immediate community response; we understand how the comments are hurtful and have engaged with community feedback. The comments do not represent our values, nor the views of benefiting organization, RU12? Community Center, and we are absolutely taking corrective measures to prevent future incidents.

We will continue working with bawdy acts in the future, and encourage new performers to take risks. Drag and burlesque are excellent mediums where we can celebrate our bodies and our identities; they are also spaces where we can witness gender transgressions and comment on our own complex cultural heritages through spectacle and sparkle. We look forward to working with peers who share our inclusive vision to grow a queer performance culture in Vermont.

Peep Show brings irreverent drag and burlesque to Vermont, and celebrates camp in all things. Produced and founded by Jonathan Bitchman and Quechee George, with an always changing cast of guest performers and sap shack pop by DJ Maple Creemee.

Our next show is March 8th, 2013, at the Monkey House. Open call to performers: please email jonathanb1tchman(at) to find out about performing with us. Also, don’t forget to like us on Facebook!

January 29, 2013

Art Talk
Photographs by Evie Lovett
Interviews by Evie Lovett and Greg Sharrow of the Vermont Folklife
(802) 775-0356

Sana (Parts 1-4)

We've asked a guest writer, Ana Hernandez, to write about her experience in a domestic violence relationship where her then girlfriend used their dog Sana as a way to inflict harm in the relationship. Ana has written a four part essay. We hope that this essay will bring to light some of the issues around domestic violence in the LGBTQ communities as well as how very deeply the animals in our lives are affected. Please note that this essay is the abridged version. If you would like to read a longer version that includes how the other dog and cat in Ana's life were affected, please let us know.

 By Ana Hernández

Part I

Sana2On the evening of September 11, 2004, I was driving my girlfriend, Jackie, and some of her friends back from the 9/11 memorial in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.  As I pulled onto the highway, I saw, reflected in the headlights, two enormous eyes staring up from a small heap in my traffic lane.  I zoomed the van over the creature, then turned sharply into the parking lot of a truck stop, explaining, “there’s something in the road, I think it was hit.”  I ran to the spot and saw a tiny dog in the gutter, likely blown over by the 18-wheelers roaring past.  As I scooped her up, she tensed but did not resist.

Continue reading "Sana (Parts 1-4)" »

Six Billion Utopias: A Collaborative Performance About Gender and Mental Health

Six Billion Utopias, a performance piece created from interviews about the ways the mental health system affects how we experience gender. It explores the experiences of a diverse cast of characters as they navigate these complicated issues. Originally created in Oregon, this staged reading features actors from the Brattleboro area queer community.

DATE: Saturday, February 2

TIME: 8:00 pm

LOCATION: Off Center for the Dramatic Arts- 294 North Winooski Ave, Burlington, VT

There will be a discussion event the day after with the actors from this performance.  The discussion will be held on Sunday, February 3rd at 10AM at The Wellness Co-op, 43 King Street, Burlington, Vermont.  We will have bagels, etc 

January 28, 2013

Lifting the Skirt: Drag Queen Secrets Revealed

Lifting the Skirt_ Drag Queen Secrets Revealed Poster
Thought about doing drag but not known where to start?

Always been curious about how drag queens look so fabulous and wondered how they do it?

Unsure what to do for this year's Drag Ball?

Come to this event and learn all the best tips and trade secrets from some amazing local drag queens!

Sunday, February 3, 1:30-3:30pm
The North End Studio, Studio B 
294 N. Winooski Ave. Burlington, VT

Admission: $5 suggested donation, to benefit the RU12? Community Center

Featuring Q&A, demos, and performances by Vermont's own Kitty VonTease, Amber LeMay, and Porsche Pink. The event will also include audience participation portions.

Presented by Vermont Gay Social Alternatives and RU12? Community Classes

(Drag King workshop to be held later this spring)

Facebook Event

Tues. Jan. 29th Social Support Group for LGBTQ Individuals with Disabilities



Come together to talk, connect, and find support around a number of issues including: Coming Out, Socializing. Challenges around employment. Safe Sex. Self Advocacy. Choosing Partners. Discovering who you are. And anything else you want to talk about! Meetings are Tuesdays, 4:30 pm at the RU12? Community Center in the Champlain Mill in Winooski. If you have any questions please contact Brenda ( or call RU12? at 860-7812

If you aren’t able to make it to the RU12? Disability Group you can join our facilitator, David at The Wellness Co-op, 43 King St., Burlington, 888-492-8218 x302 for LGBTQ Support Circle for Individuals with Disabilities, or join our online group through Pal Talk. Monday nights 4:30pm-6:00 pm online Pal Talk in the Vermont GLBTQ Group for Individuals with a Disability Chat Room.

January 25, 2013

Disability Movement at Creating Change in Atlanta

Photo-2In the words of David Frye "We are here at Creating Change to make a difference and to make history. To put ideas in people's heads that this is a serious, serious matter and that for people with disabilities we are not invisible, we are out there to make a change.  And I think we did make a change, we showed people my story and when they left the conference room today, they said Wow, wow that person has lived it, has seen it and been through it all.  And I could not have done the work that I did today without the help of Peri Jude Radecic and Tia Nelis and Brenda Pitmon.  And I want to thank you all for supporting my ideas for how to help people with disabilities who identify as LGBTQ."  

David Frye and Tia Nelis speaking at Creating Change

January 24, 2013

Build Power, Take Action, Create Change

Build power, take action, create change was the overarching theme for today at the Creating Change conference in Atlanta.  David and I had a full day of immersing ourselves in learning how activists around the nation are engaged in this work.  I attended a day long institute on Funding Our Collective Liberation aimed at strengthening and deepening our social justice fundraising skills and analysis.

There are over 3,000 activists attending this conference!  No that isn't a typo, 3,000!  Can you imagine all that passion and excitement in one ballroom.  Electrifying!

Time to call it a night as David and I will be giving a workshop on disability rights and LGBTQ movements tomorrow with Peri Jude Radecic, Arizona Center for Disability Law and Tia Nelis from the University of Illinois, Chicago.

In solidarity,

David Frye

Brenda Pitmon

Cancellation: LGBTQ and Disability Circle This Friday in St. Johnsbury

The LGBTQ Individuals With Disabilities Support Circle in St. Johnsbury that meets at the Unitarian Universalist Church in St. Johnsbury at 47 Cherry Street from 11am-12pm on Fridays has been canceled for 1/25/13.  The group will resume February 1st. for more information.

Greetings from The National Conference on LGBT Equality- Creating Change

We are excited to begin our first day at the Creating Change conference in Atlanta.  So many workshops, so little time to do them all.  This morning I will be attending an all day institute on Funding our Liberation and David will be attending the Social Media Institute.

Tomorrow we will be presenting a workshop on The Liberation of LGBTQ Self-Advocates in the Disability Rights and LGBTQ Movements.

More later!

In Solidarity,

David Frye- facilitator of the LGBTQ individuals with a disability support group

Brenda Pitmon- Program Coordinator SafeSpace Program

RU12?'s LGBTQ Fiber Arts Group - Sunday, January 27th at Noon

Crochet lady

Have you ever wanted to learn how to knit, crochet, embroider, or stitch but lacked a gaggle of queer folk to support you through the process? Look no further... RU12?'s Fiber Arts Group meets at Noon on the 2nd and 4th Sundays of every month at RU12? Community Center.

Knitting, crochetting, weaving, ebroidery and more for people of all ages, gender identities, sexual orientations, and skill levels to come together in a queer space. If you have questions or you'd like to join the group please contact RU12? at 860-RU12 (7812) or email

Join our online Fiber Arts Group!

Social Support Group for LGBTQ Individuals with Disabilities- Tues. Jan. 22nd


Come together to talk, connect, and find support around a number of issues including: Coming Out, Socializing. Challenges around employment. Safe Sex. Self Advocacy. Choosing Partners. Discovering who you are. And anything else you want to talk about!

Meetings are Tuesdays, 4:30 pm at the RU12? Community Center in the Champlain Mill in Winooski. If you have any questions please contact Brenda ( or call RU12? at 860-7812

If you aren’t able to make it to the RU12? Disability Group you can join our facilitator, David at The Wellness Co-op, 43 King St., Burlington, 888-492-8218 x302 for LGBTQ Support Circle for Individuals with Disabilities, or join our online group through Pal Talk.  Monday nights 4:30pm-6:00 pm online Pal Talk in the Vermont GLBTQ Group for Individuals with a Disability Chat Room.

January 22, 2013

Relay For Life- Rainbow Edition!


Be a part of an exciting new movement!

The American Cancer Society is proud to announce a groundbreaking new movement in the fight against cancer. Introducing Relay For Life- Rainbow Edition; an event for and by the LGBTQ community geared towards highlighting disparities in cancer and raising money to fight back!

Relay LogoRelay For Life is a 12 hour, overnight event where participants form teams and camp around a track taking turns walking all night, in honor of the concept that “cancer never sleeps”. This fun, family friendly event is coming specifically to the LGBTQ community in order to honor those lost, celebrate those surviving, and learn how to fight back against the disease and its disparities in our community. Scheduled for the summer of 2013, your American Cancer Society is seeking volunteers to be a part of this exciting new venture by becoming part of the planning team. For more information on how to get involved email Claire Giroux-Williams at or call 802-872-6321. You can also visit our Facebook Page.

"Identity and Drag Performance: The Intersections of Gender, Race, Class, and Sexuality"

By: Kim Fountain, Executive Director

On the evening of January 18th, RU12? was the beneficiary of an amazing, campy, sexy burlesque event that drew one of the more diverse crowds I have had the pleasure to be part of since taking my position as Executive Director a little over a year ago. I talked with people from across the state, of a wide range of ages, genders, and races. We were all there to have a good time and from all the clapping and cheering, overall, it was clearly a great night.

On a personal level, being among people of color was particularly soothing and comforting. As a woman of color who recently left New York City for the first or second whitest state in the country, depending on the year, the adjustment has been difficult. And yet, on Friday night, I was heartened to witness the crowd at Peep Show hold the emcee responsible for two racially charged comments and the next day, to read her apology to the community. I was also very pleasantly surprised to hear the co-producer of the event step in as one of the comments was made, and make clear that the ad-libbed direction of the routine needed to be redirected toward a celebration of racial diversity.

Still, the racially charged comments were made and people were deeply affected. There is a need to discuss our feelings and concerns around the comments. We would therefore like to take this opportunity to collaboratively host an open forum addressing personal and social politics at the intersections of identity and drag performance. If you would like to be part of planning this forum, please contact me, Kim Fountain, at 802-860-7812 or

January 17, 2013

St. Johnsbury Support Circle Is Meeting This Friday!

The LGBTQ Individuals With Disabilities Support Circle in St. Johnsbury has restarted!  The group meets at the Unitarian Universalist Church in St. Johsbury at 47 Cherry Street from 11am-12pm on Fridays.

This week David Frye, a peer facilitator will be in attendance (weather permitting). for more information.

January 16, 2013

GLAMflixx: Safety Not Guaranteed

Safety2Join us for our weekly GLAM meeting followed by a showing of Safety Not Guaranteed! Food and drinks provided. (GLAM meeting begins at 6:30, movie immediately after at 7:30.)

From the producers of Little Miss Sunshine - "When an unusual classified ad inspires three cynical Seattle magazine employees to look for the story behind it, they discover a mysterious eccentric named Kenneth, a likable but paranoid supermarket clerk, who believes he's solved the riddle of time travel and intends to depart again soon. Together, they embark on a hilarious, smart, and unexpectedly heartfelt journey that reveals how far believing can take you." -- (C) Official Site

GLAM is a group of young gay, bi, queer, and trans guys who are coming together, getting out, and enjoying the connections we made with one another. To get involved or for more information, contact Mike or Jean-Denis at or 802-860-7812.



January 15, 2013

Burly Bear Bear Blast (Winter Edition) - 5PM Fri, 1/18

Burly bear

A Pride VT fund-raiser and Champlain Valley hell-raiser!!!

5PM - 10PM - Friday, January 18th
Red Square, Burlington

Time for the bears and cubs to peek outside their hibernating dens and have a few drinks together while DJs Rob Douglas, Alan Perry, and Craig Mitchell keeps our bodies warm with hot tunes!

Beer and drink specials offered by Red Square
Contests and prizes!!

$5 door cover. Proceeds to go Pride VT

PEEP SHOW: A Presidential Affair - Fri, Jan 18th


Drag and Burlesque are back! Porsche Pink, Quechee George, and Jonathan Bitchman take over the Monkey House for our 2ND INAUGURAL PEEP SHOW! 

Benefit for RU12? Community Center. 

8PM - Friday, January 18th - The Monkey House

We're celebrating the pomp and circumstance of Presidential appointments with stripteases and 'staches.

Special guest performances throughout the evening by
Alexa Luthor and her Green Mountain Cabaret:
Swizzle Schtick
Merrique Hysterique
Siouxsie Charisse

Kings Local 802 

Dance party to follow with DJ Maple Creemee. 

Win hawt prizes in our Gay A$$ Raffle. 

$5-10 sliding scale, no one turned away for lack of funds.

Facebook Event

Big Gay Onion: Open Mic Event -Thurs 1/17

BGO Best


Every Third Thursday, 6:30pm-8:30pm, with featured performer Antara! At the Block Gallery in Winooski, RU12? hosts an open mic night featuring community performers. Anyone and everyone is encouraged to participate: musicians, comedians, puppeteers, spoken word artists, and more! Event is free but we will pass the hat for appreciation for RU12? 

For more information call RU12? 860-7812. Email to sign up for a performance spot, or just show up!

Facebook Event

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