Community news and notes: David Parks and Paula Abdul honored; Queer Arts Film Festival; Veteran’s Day and SNAPIQs


Parks and Abdul honored by Nevada Equality

Silver State Equality will honor recording artist Paula Abdul and Nevada State Senator David Parks Nov. 6 at Jimmy Kimmel’s Comedy Club at the LINQ Promenade. This is the first ever Equality Awards for the statewide LGBTQ+ civil rights organization, which fights for the LGBTQ+ community.

“Paula Abdul has been both an LGBTQ icon and an outspoken advocate for our community and for people living with HIV — even when others remained silent,” said Silver State Equality State Director André C. Wade.

“Sen. Parks has been a trailblazing champion in Carson City, where he has provided crucial leadership for the LGBTQ community, passing some of Nevada’s most important civil rights protections during his career. We’re thrilled to honor their advocacy and we look forward to celebrating the roles they’ve each played in the LGBTQ civil rights movement at the first-ever Nevada Equality Awards.”

Sen. Parks, elected to the Nevada Assembly in 1996, becoming the Nevada Legislature’s first openly gay member, was elected to the Senate in 2008 and is currently dean of the Legislature’s LGBTQ Caucus. Abdul started her new Las Vegas residency, “Paula Abdul: Forever Your Girl,” Oct. 22 at the Flamingo. Tickets and sponsorships can be purchased at

Youth Homelessness Summit is Nov. 7 

The 2019 Southern Nevada Youth Homeless Summit will be 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Nov. 7 at The Venetian where community leaders will discuss the plan to end youth homelessness.

Presented by Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth, groups and experts will be discussing community resources, higher education, stigmatization and system-wide approaches.

The first annual Southern Nevada Youth Homelessness Summit held in 2017, launched the movement and in 2018 created a plan to end youth homelessness, unveiling it at the 2018 Summit. For information and reservations, go to

Las Vegas Queer Arts Film Festival  

The Las Vegas Queer Arts Film Festival opens Nov. 8 at the Center, 401 S. Maryland Parkway, with local queer-identifying artists and filmmakers meeting with local professionals in the industry, followed by LVQA’s Annual Ball.

Film screenings, varying in theme and genre, will be Nov. 9-10 at Regal Colonnade at 8880 S. Eastern Ave., Social mixer is at 7-9 p.m., Nov. 8; Annual Ball from 9-11 p.m.,

Activism across generations 

Intergenerational Conversations: Queer Voices of Social Change will be held Nov. 8 at 6 p.m. at 900 Karen Ave., Suite 211,

Gender Justice is an advocacy and anti-violence organization for healing, dignity and justice for trans, intersex, lesbian or gay persons, sex workers, the BDSM community and others.

Veteran’s Day Celebration  

Congresswoman Susie Lee will recognize veterans in a Nov. 11 ceremony at Touro University Nevada designed to honor students and employees who have served their country. Col. Eric K. “Ripper” Fippinger will talk about his 35-year military career, clocking more than 4,300 flights, including those with the Thunderbolts and deployments to the Middle East.

The noon Veterans Day ceremony will include raising the flag that flew over the U.S. Capitol. Touro University is at 874 American Pacific Drive, Henderson.

Cox Media presents at Lambda Business, Nov. 13

Matt Zornes, digital media sales manager at Cox Media will present “Business Objectives, Sales Funnel and Digital Products,” at the Lambda Business Association lunch, Wed., Nov. 13 at The Center, 11:30 a.m.

SNAPIQS in Vegas! 

The Southern Nevada Asian Pacific Islander Queer Society will hold an event at 5 p.m., Nov. 15 at The Center, 401 S. Maryland Parkway.

With a mission to increase visibility, inspire others and train leaders, the organization holds events, workshops, social outings and activities in Southern Nevada, serving the LGBTQ, individuals of Asian, Pacific Islander and Desi American descent.

Remembering trans community members 

Transgender Day of Remembrance, held every Nov. 20 in honor of those who have lost their lives to violence, will be recognized with a vigil on Nov. 22 from 6-8 p.m. at the Center, 401 S. Maryland Parkway. Las Vegas TransPride will display the Wall of Remembrance. Details at

Nonprofit dental charity helps others 

Las Vegas dentist Sean Mohtashami has opened a new nonprofit, Make Me Smile, designed to provide dental care to people in need of dental services, but can’t afford them —victims of domestic abuse, bullied teens and those suffering with crooked or rotting teeth

“There are so many people who simply can’t afford cosmetic or reconstructive dentistry,” said Mohtashami, who has practices in Southern California, Las Vegas and trains colleagues in cosmetic and reconstructive surgery. “When you smile, you are acknowledging others, and doing so helps brighten their day and makes you feel good inside.

“Our world, especially now, needs more smiles.”

Those in need of restorative dentistry are encouraged to describe their condition, its cause and impact on their life and send email with a photo, For more information, 562-491-1000 or

Nevada ranks No. 2 for most Syphilis cases

Despite available preventative health care measures, Americans are only using preventative services at about half the recommended rate, according to the CDC.

Nevada ranks No. 2 for the most syphilis cases in America with 57.2 syphilis per 100,000 people, compared with a national average of 31.4 per 100,000 people. The study released by Health Testing Centers, using CDC data, shows 2017 to be the highest to date. Testing began in 1941 with 679,028 cases, increasing to more than 2.3 million in 2017.