Smile Politely

The Rainbow Connection: April 2–7

TUESDAY, April 2

The Rainbow Coffeehouse offers a welcoming, open environment for all LGBTQ and Ally communities to socialize. Whether you are here for a meeting, hanging out with friends, or to study, we invite you to join us each Tuesday at Rainbow Coffeehouse at ETC Cafe.

WHAT: Mpowerment Meeting

WHERE: Green Street Center
24 E. Green St., Suite 14

WHEN: Tuesday, Apr. 2, 6:00–9:00 p.m.

Mpowerment is a local social and HIV prevention group for young gay/bisexual men. Meetings are open to all young gay and bisexual men interested in becoming involved.

For more information, please contact Carrie Keenan.

WHAT: Man UP: Men’s Support Group

WHERE: The UP Center of Champaign County

WHEN: Tuesday, Apr. 2, 7:00–9:00 p.m.

Man UP is geared towards adult men, ages 26 and up. We meet in a peer support setting with focused discussions on topics such as the coming out process, developing friendships within the community, dating, and more.

For more information go here, or contact Kevin Bowersox-Johnson.

WHAT: Infusions

WHERE: LGBT Resource Center, Illini Union (Room 323)

WHEN: Tuesday, Apr. 2, 8:00 p.m.

Infusions: A Multicultural Gender and Sexuality Alliance is a cultural/LGBTQ organization dedicated to inclusion and diversity. Infusion focuses on the intersections of gender, sexuality, ethnicity, and race. We are open to any and all who seek to learn more about and to support these intersections of identities.

Infusions seeks to provide an inclusive space for LGBTQ people of color who may not feel welcomed within their ethnic communities due to their gender identity or sexuality.

For more information, please email.


WHERE: Various

WHEN: Tuesday, Apr. 2, 9:00 p.m.–2:00 a.m.

The spring has sprung and so has our thirst. Come join us for the last LGBTQA bar crawl of the year. We’ll be quenching our thirst at these locations:

Murphy’s: 9:00–10:00 p.m.
Firehaus: 10:00–11:30 p.m.
Cly’s: 11:30 p.m.–12:30 a.m.
Brothers: 12:30–2:00 a.m.

Fabulous bar crawl shirts are only $10! Please come to Illini Union Room 314A at 8:00 p.m. on Monday, Apr. 1 to buy the shirts! If you can’t make it, please let me know to order your shirt!



WHAT: Youth Time

WHERE: UP Center of Champaign County

WHEN: Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 3:00–6:00 p.m.

Youth Time is open time for youth in the UP Center meeting space. During this time, the UP Center meeting space will be open for youth in middle school and high school (13–17) to use to socialize, do homework, relax, or just spend time together. There will be an adult staff member in the space, but otherwise this time is reserved for youth only.

Youth groups Play It UP and Talk It UP will continue from 6:30–7:30, but the UP Center will now be open to youth before group from 3–6 p.m. Please join us!

For more information, please contact Maggie.

WHAT: Brother II Brother Meeting

WHERE: Green Street Center
24 E. Green St., Suite 14

WHEN: Wednesday, Apr. 3, 7:00–8:00 p.m.

B II B is a social group for young men of color who have sexual or loving relationships with other men. The goal is to create a strong positive and healthy community for men of color in Champaign-Urbana.

For more information, please email Rage.

WHAT: Coming Out Support Group

WHERE: Please email for location

WHEN: Wednesday, Apr. 3, 7:00–8:00 p.m.

Coming Out Support Group is a safe, informal space for U of I students to listen, discuss, and learn about aspects of identity and coming out. It is open to all lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning students, and those who do not choose to label themselves.

This is a confidential space; we always respect your privacy.

For more information, please email.

WHAT: Trans UP Retreat

WHERE: The UP Center of Champaign County

WHEN: Wednesday, Apr. 3, 6:00–9:00 p.m.

Trans UP is a group for members of the transgender community to come together in a safe space to discuss our lives and socialize.

This week, the Trans UP Support Group will have a special Trans UP Retreat. The evening will include pizza, games, and prizes. The after party will be held at the Drury Inn and Suites (905 W Anthony Drive).

Games include: Donut on a string, balloon schraids, Ellens’s Skittle catch, vegas wedding, and more.

For more information, please contact Jena.

WHAT: The Normal Heart

WHERE: Krannert Center Studio Theatre

WHEN: Wednesday–Saturday, Apr. 3–6, 7:30 p.m. | Sunday, Apr. 7, 3:00 p.m.

Larry Kramer’s The Normal Heart wrestles with the time period in the early 1980s when the AIDS epidemic had unleashed itself in the United States, but governmental agencies and health care leaders had not yet come to grips with the challenge before them. Real-life activist Larry Kramer turned his frustrations into an angry and effective demand that America take action; his efforts led to new approaches to AIDS research and treatment.

Check out Thom Schnarre’s excellent review of this play here.


WHERE: The Station Theatre

WHEN: Wednesday–Sunday, Apr. 3–7, 8:00 p.m.

Aphra Behn is getting out of the spy game and into showbiz. Sprung from debtors’ prison after a disastrous overseas mission, she’ll fulfill her dream of becoming the first professional female playwright — if she can finish her play by morning. All that’s standing in her way are her royal lover, King Charles II; magnetic actress, Nell Gwynne; and double agent, William Scot, who may or may not be trying to murder the king.

Double-crossing, cross-dressing, sex, art, and politics all come together in playwright Liz Duffy Adams’ mischievous, bodice-ripping farce that peers into the life and times of the literal first lady of the stage.

Check out our review of this play here. Make your reservations here.

WHAT: Boys Nite Out

WHERE: Boltini Lounge

WHEN: Wednesday, Apr. 3, 9:00 p.m.

Every Wednesday is Boys Nite Out at Boltini Lounge. DJ Randall Ellison is at the decks spinning Hi-NRG, dance pop, disco house, and oldskool, gay club anthems.

WHAT: Karaoke Party!

WHERE: Emerald City Lounge

WHEN: Wednesday, Apr. 3, 9:00–11:00 p.m.

Emerald City hosts Karaoke every Wednesday. Doors open at 5:00. Order some great food, enjoy the drink specials, and at 9:00 p.m. join in on the fun and show everyone what you’ve got!

WHAT: The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert

WHERE: Art Theater Co-op

WHEN: Wednesday–Thursday, Apr. 3–4, 10:00 p.m.

The Art will be showing Priscilla, Queen of the Desert on 35mm print. But before the movie, we’ll have our own drag show hosted by Veronica Bleaus, the self-proclaimed “worst drag queen in the Midwest.” Buy your tickets here.



WHAT: Parkland Pride Meeting

WHERE: Parkland Community College (Room X-150)

WHEN: Thursday, Apr. 4, 12:00–12:50 p.m.

Parkland Pride is Parkland Community College’s LGBTA Student Organization that promotes social connections and campus awareness. Campus visibility and fun are our goals. Join us if you support LGBT Rights and LGBT Issues!

For more information, please contact Tanino.

WHAT: Hey! Let’s Talk About the Vagina

WHERE: LGBT Resource Center, Illini Union (Room 323)

WHEN: Thursday, Apr. 4, 4:00 p.m.

A talk for male-identified students. Limited to ten Participants.

Facilitated by: Kevin Ng, LGBT Resource Center Intern and Britt Rasky, McKinley Health Center.

WHAT: Among Women: Lesbian, Bisexual, Queer, and Questioning Support Group

WHERE: Asian American Cultural Center

WHEN: Thursday, Apr. 4, 5:00–6:00 p.m.

We are an informal support group made up of lesbian, bisexual and queer women students; a place to meet other women who share your concerns and to form or broaden your social support network; an opportunity to decrease the alienation and isolation of being a lesbian or bisexual woman in a majority heterosexual environment; and a great chance to exchange ideas, experiences, and opinions. We are open to all University of Illinois students, both graduate and undergraduate.

For more information, please contact Alexandra.

WHAT: Play It UP

WHERE: The UP Center of Champaign County

WHEN: Thursday, Apr. 4, 6:30–7:30 p.m.

Play It UP is a social group for LGBTQA middle and high school youth. Play it UP is peer-led, adult-supported, and an official program of The UP Center. The facilitators of the group include two board members and the youth seat on the Board of Directors.

Youth involved in Play it UP organize monthly social events for LGBTQA youth to engage in, including movie nights, putt-putt, bowling, etc.

Information shared at Play it UP is strictly confidential, including youths’ presence at the group.

For more information, please contact Peggy.

WHAT: Building Bridges

WHERE: LGBT Resource Center, Illini Union (Room 323)

WHEN: Thursday, Apr. 4, 7:00–8:00 p.m.

Building Bridges exists to provide an open, accepting, safe space space for people who identify as LGBTQ and Allies and are interested in discussions about Christianity.

For more information, please email.

WHAT: Out in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (oSTEM)

WHERE: LGBT Resource Center, Illini Union (Room 323)

WHEN: Thursday, Apr. 4, 8:00 p.m.

oSTEM@Illinois is an LGBT and Ally RSO that facilitates the growth of LGBT representation in STEM fields. We provide members with the tools to advance themselves both academically and professionally in an environment that is welcoming and friendly.

For more information, please contact John.


FRIDAY, April 5

WHAT: Internet Dating & Safety Workshop, feat. Lucas Brooks

WHERE: LGBT Resource Center, Illini Union (Room 323)

WHEN: Friday, Apr. 5, 12 noon


WHAT: “VGL 5’4″ Top” and Q&A, feat. Lucas Brooks

WHERE: Illini Union (Room 314A)

WHEN: Friday Apr. 5, 7:00 p.m. (Doors 6:30 p.m.)

Pride would like to invite you to an amazing day with the fabulous Lucas Brooks!

Lucas is a writer, performer, and sex educator from New York City and he is coming to the University of Illinois. He maintains a blog called “Top 2 Bottom,” in which he gives us his daily observations form the perspective of an intellectual homosexual.

Lucas will be holding a workshop on internet dating & safety as well as performing his one man show, “VGL 5’4″ Top.”

WHAT: Blend UP

WHERE: The UP Center of Champaign County

WHEN: Friday, Apr. 5, 7:00–9:00 p.m.

Blend UP is a discussion group for same-gender loving people of color in the Urbana-Champaign community. This group is geared toward meeting the social and support needs of LGBTQ people of color in Champaign-Urbana. We welcome men, women, and transgender folks of all identities to join us.

Discussion topics include:

  • Family
  • Relationships
  • School
  • Work
  • Defining yourself

Blend UP is for young adults and adults (ages 18 and up). For more information contact Lance.

WHAT: Shabang

WHERE: Emerald City Lounge

WHEN: Friday, Apr. 5, 9:00 p.m.–2:00 a.m.

Bringing the Shabang to Champaign!

An underground movement starts here. Come join us as we celebrate the dawning of a new flavor of nightlife in Champaign!



WHAT: Saturday Night Royals

WHERE: Emerald City Lounge

WHEN: Saturday, Apr. 6, 11:00 p.m.–2:00 a.m.

Join Emerald City Lounge every Saturday for a Royal Event. You’ll enjoy the Best and Brightest Stars of Drag that Downstate Illinois has to offer.

Call (217) 398-8661 or email for information regarding the featured headliner and reservations.


SUNDAY, April 7

WHAT: GCAP’s Annual Walk Against AIDS

WHERE: University of Illinois Arboretum

WHEN: Sunday, Apr. 7, 2:00 p.m.

Every year, GCAP holds a fundraiser to promote education and awareness to help our local community in the fight against HIV and AIDS. This year, GCAP has partnered with the University YWCA in order to strengthen our community’s understanding and prevention of HIV and AIDS.

HIV/AIDS is a local issue affecting the lives of people within your own community. Illinois is one of top five states with the fastest growing number of new AIDS diagnoses.

This year, join us for a 5K run or a 1 mile walk, games, food, music, and more! All proceeds go to assist GCAP in its mission to better the community.

How to register:

  1. Go here
  2. Pay the $15 registration fee
  3. Join as part of a team or as an individual

WHAT: Women of Pride

WHERE: LGBT Resource Center, Illini Union (Room 323)

WHEN: Sunday, Apr. 7, 6:30 p.m.

Women of Pride is a student group made for women, by women, as a safe place to gather. We informally educate the campus community of cultural, political, and other social issues related to lesbians, bisexual women, and transgender people. One of our goals is to foster a sense of community among queer women and our allies. We do this by gathering weekly for discussions, workshops, and events on or off campus.

For more information, please contact Sarah.

WHAT: Queer Formal: “Once Upon A Time…”

WHERE: Wesley Foundation, Great Hall

WHEN: Saturday, Apr. 6, 7:00–10:00 p.m. (Doors close at 9:00 p.m.)

Once Upon A Time, there was a very queer ball…

The LGBT Resource Center and the LGBT student organizations at the University of Illinois bring you the second annual Queer Formal: “Once Upon A Time…”

Come join us for a night of magic and mystery where all of your dreams can come true! It’s time to find your Prince or Princess Charming, just don’t be a dragon! Call your fairy godmother or sea witch and enter a whole new world at Queer Formal!

Doors: Close at 9:00 p.m.
Admission: Free! No prior ticket purchase or sign up needed
Age: 18+ (valid university ID or state-issued ID required)
Music: DJ Randall
Photo Booth: Albert Plawinski and Minsu Kang

WHAT: Sunday Night Drag Shows

WHERE: Chester Street Bar

WHEN: Sunday, Apr. 7, 11:30 p.m.–2:00 a.m.

C-Street hosts drag shows every Sunday, with different performers every week. The first Sunday of every month is Open Talent Night, hosted by Ceduxion Carrington, so anyone who wants to sing, dance, or give drag a try can compete for a cash prize.



Nominations Needed for the 2013 LGBTA Awards

The LGBTA Awards, sponsored by the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Resource Center, were created to celebrate the achievements of the LGBTA campus community at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. All students, staff, and faculty are encouraged to nominate their peers, students, colleagues, and co-workers for one of the awards listed below.

Nominations must be submitted only by those affiliated with the university via this link. Note: please scroll down the page to find the nomination form.

Recipients selected for an award by the LGBTA Awards Committee will be honored with a Certificate of Recognition at the Lavender Graduation & Awards Ceremony on May 1, 2013 at 5:00 p.m.

The deadline for nominations is 5:00 p.m., Friday, April 5, 2013.

Nominations are being accepted for the following awards:

  • Distinguished Service Award

  • Faculty/Staff Leadership Award

  • Emerging Leader Award

  • Ally Award

  • Unsung Advocate Award

  • Student Organization Award

  • Outstanding Student Research Award

  • BridgeBuilding Award

  • Catalyst Award

For more information, go here.


Are you an LGBTQA student graduating this year (May ’13/Dec ’13)? If you are interested in participating in Lavender Graduation on May 1, 2013 at 5:00 p.m., please email your full preferred name, degree title, and major to the LGBT Resource Center. They must receive your information by April 19, 2013 in order for your name to appear in the program.


The UP Center of Champaign County is currently searching for potential films to show at their annual Reel It UP event in June. They are looking to show one film per Tuesday of the month, and are in need of diverse film choices related to the LGBT community (family friendly, political, erotic, racially diverse, kinks, sub-culture, etc.). Films that are feature-length (60 min., 120 min. max) and made in 2011 or earlier are preferred.

If you are a filmmaker or know someone who might be interested in having the UP Center show his/her film for free or at discounted price, please contact Tencia for more information.



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Disclaimer: This is not a comprehensive list of all LGBTQ events in our community. Please always feel free to email me or post other events/updates/corrections in the comments.

Except on rare occasions, all language is taken directly from event pages and websites, and only minimally edited.

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