Creating Vibrant Community
    by helping LGBTQ people along their way

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    760.416.7790 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Hey there,
For a long time I confused oneness with sameness. Peace and joy would come to the planet when we all wore loose fitting robes, hummed a peaceful om, and spoke in a monotone pleasant voice. Our range of emotions reduced to the singularity of niceness. But sameness is not oneness. Our feet, our hands, our eyes are of one body but they are not the same. The heart must beat, the lungs must breathe, and my stomach must turn my vegetables on thins diet into healthy nutrition. The foot does not dominate the heart, the hands do not fight one another.
We too are of one planet, one ecosystem. Water moves through us, air moves through us, the minerals of earth build our bones, and the animal and plant nations nourish us. Everything is unique and has a purpose.
I love the sense of being part of something larger than myself. Like a struggling tuba player in the orchestra, I long to find the rhythms of harmony and collaboration with all that surrounds me. I want to be me, but playing as one.
Women's weekly programs
Inspiring Friendships
This weekly chat group is for all women (no matter how you identify) to discuss topics of interest and find connection.
Join us for an hour and a half of interesting chat as the spirits moves us.
Thursdays @ 10:30am
Driveway Art Show & Sale
Saturday, May 1st, 11AM - 2PM
Join Deb Morris and Gwendolyn Morgan for a driveway Art Show & sale featuring the work of Lesbian Artists of the Desert
For information & directions text or call -
Early start to beat the heat!
Reserve your spot here
Spring Walking & Hiking
Tuesday, May 4th @ 7am
Chuckwalla Trail
High for the day is supposed to 97° so let’s get an early start. Meet in the upper parking lot behind Rancho Mirage City Hall (corner of 111 and Frank Sinatra).
Hike is 3 miles with a 500ft elevation gain, 1- 1.5 hrs. Join for all or part.
Physical distancing is required
Bring a liter of water.
Sunnylands in May
Sunnylands, Palm Springs
Sunday, May 9th @ 8:30AM
Join Barbara, Gail and Gwendolyn to stroll through the beautiful gardens and plants at Sunnylands at 8:30am.
Admission is free into the gardens.
37977 Bob Hope Dr, Rancho Mirage, CA 92270.
Also enjoy the Desert X installation at Sunnylands "Women’s Qualities" by Ghada Amer.
Register here.
CLOUDBURST - Amazon Prime Tubi
Directed by: Thom Fitzgerald
Starring: Olympia Dukakis, Brenda Fricka
A touching film and at times shockingly funny. Great cast with a stand out performance by Olympia Dukakis at her notoriously brilliant best. This film's drama leads us on a touching, emotional ride of understanding and mayhem attributed to loves grasp, and the desire for embracing what we hold dear to our hearts. Do not ruin your viewing pleasure by going in with preconceived expectations. Appreciate this gem of a film for what it is.
I've watched this one more than once - and I love it. I'm sure I'll watch it a few more times. A couple in love, on the run just so they can spend the rest of their lives together - Love it!
If you have any recommends for movies or books you'd like to share with a brief critique, email to me @ This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
Lesbian & Women's Programming elsewhere
Comedy in Idyllwild, Saturday May 1st
Mina Hartong
Saturday, May 1st 8:30PM - 10PM
Award winning comedian and solo performer Mina Hartong ( Caroline’s, Cipriani’s New York, Ladies of Laughter Finalist) brings her Comedy Special to the historic Rustic Theater.
Join us for an evening of stand up, stories and signature dance moves. Mina is the girl next door who dares to say what is on everyone’s mind, and says it with humor, warmth and just the right amount of mischief. 
Tickets are $15 and you can
reserve yours This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
TWO DAY Golf Tournament
The 20th Anniversary Rainbow Challenge Golf Tournament, with proceeds benefiting The Center, is THIS WEEKEND, taking place at Indian Canyons Golf Resort South and North Courses in Palm Springs!
Stonewall Golf members who aren’t signed-up to compete can join in the social events. Click here for the updated summary of weekend activities and how YOU can participate and support this wonderful event!
Collaborative Movement Art Performance
Desert Movement Arts presents
“Broad Daylight.”
May 2nd, 10AM
Desert Movement Arts’ newest dance performance, “Broad Daylight,” at The Peace Labyrinth at the UUCOD in Rancho Mirage, explores the labyrinth as both myth and landscape. Surrounded by desert flora and fauna, a quintet of women move through four sections of choreography and improvisation: a pilgrimage, a journey into other times and beings, duets, and a celebration of women creating community, the often invisible work that happens in broad daylight.
The performance is free and open to the public.
Donations are welcome.
For more information, contact Constance Clare-Newman, 510-219-5097.
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
Want to learn?
Get clued in!
Do you have questions about pickleball?
Where to play?
Where to learn?
What equipment do you need?
What the hell is pickleball?
Then meet Mary Barsaleau.
Mary welcomes all your questions @
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Want to play?
If you're interested in PIckleball lessons
or Round Robin play
visit here
or call 760-347-3484
Enjoy our weekly newsletter below
Spring has sprung and so are we! Springing into movement and action, that is. While we hold onto the beautiful weather with a white-knuckled grip, we’re inspired to put our feet on the ground and feel the earth beneath us. Later this week we are set to hit triple digits so we’re getting our fill of sunshine, light breezes (no thank you, 40+ mph gusts), and stretching our bodies after all the Zooming around we’ve done for 13 months.
Plus, many outdoor offerings have come back or are coming back, including gay softball, the Rainbow Golf Challenge, the opening of the Sonoran at Asia SF, and much much more. While you check out some of our movement-focused programs and community events coming up, let us know -
which of these outdoor activities is your favorite?
On my own two feet: Hiking, Walking, Running
Racquets galore: Pickleball, Tennis
Wheels Please: Biking, Rollerblading, Skate Boarding
Lounging in the pool
Team Sports: Soccer, Basketball, Volleyball, Softball
On the Green: Golfing
Staying connected and checking in on one another remains as important as ever, so we asked if you felt cared for, or cared for others this week? A resounding 81% of you replied yes, with the remainder split between no and not sure.
Remember, facing the problems life throws our way can be easier when you don't do it alone. If you need help reach out, we are here for you.
Director's Letter
Last Wednesday I was surprised by my encounters with two different bishops from the United Methodist Church in the span of just a few hours. Surprised because, like many queer and trans people, I have a complicated relationship with religion, and faith… Both of these bishops were here in front of me, in and with community, speaking common truths about living in today’s world, and finding peace and justice through it all. I was touched by the steady softness by each of these women, and felt compassion seeping through the words they spoke. I appreciated Bishop Minerva Carcaño’s lifetime of advocacy and work in the pursuit of social justice, and I wondered out loud about her stamina and resiliency. I felt the power of community, live and in person, at the George Floyd vigil in Palm Springs, organized by the Palm Springs UMC and the Palm Springs Black History Committee, and felt my soul nourished by people who want a better tomorrow for everyone, especially our Black and Brown community.
I’m not sure what lies ahead for me when it comes to faith, and how and where it might be expressed, and how to keep the faith for decades and decades. For now, I am opening myself up to what it means to let love lead… even when the world gives us many reasons otherwise. As long as I have community, and hope, it’ll be a remarkable ride.
Lex Ortega
Director of Innovation
& Community Engagement
Upcoming @ The Center
Riverside County remains in the orange tier of the state’s COVID-19 re-opening framework and people are naturally asking when The LGBTQ Community Center of the Desert in Palm Springs and Coachella will be opening back up.
We’ve put together an update for you on our website here. Visit this page to get official future updates about our re-opening status. And if you have specific feedback, thoughts, questions, or concerns, we would love to hear them. Email us This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to share.
Ongoing Programs
Registration open
till May 6th
This program has been carefully crafted by facilitator Lynn Simonson to help participants improve their overall health, and specially benefiting those with mobility issues, via ZOOM!
Engage in gentle seated stretches, grounding breath techniques and calming guided meditations.
$30 per month
10AM - 11AM
This group provides a safe place to discuss all aspects of what it means to be queer and spiritual. We explore, learn and support each other on our individual spiritual journeys without judgement, fear or expectations.
First and third Mondays
10AM - 11AM
through June
Registration open
till May 6th
Lynn Simonson is back with her popular "50+ FIT" training
program via ZOOM!
This low-impact class is designed to Increase strength, flexibility and balance for everyone.
$20 per month
11AM - Noon
For this month's Let's Talk About Race, we encourage you to experience the performing arts piece, Speak My Words, Tell My Truth, by facilitator
and fellow Let's Talk About Race participant, Lorenzo Taylor.
Brothers of the Desert Presents:
Speak My Words,
Tell My Truth
Lorenzo Taylor, a volunteer facilitator with The Center, wrote this play about racism and homophobia through the eyes of Langston Hughes, James Baldwin, Essex Hemphill, E. Lynn Harris, and Tarell Alvin McCraney. It combines some of their written words with commentaries on the racial climate in the gay community.
It will be presented online by Coachella Valley Rep on Thursday, April 29th. Folks can register at www.cvrep.org or here.
Let’s show up for what will undoubtedly be a great show related to the topics we’ve been discussing since last June, and the realities in our communities we’ve been interrogating together. We can discuss the themes and work Lorenzo presents perhaps at the next conversation on the last Thursday of the month, in May (5/27), at noon. Or if you have other thoughts, please drop an email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
To register, email
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
or call 760 416 7899
NEW Sessions start
MAY 10th
A new 12 week, closed sessions of Bereavement Therapy Group is offered via HIPAA-compliant Zoom calls.
The program is for those who have lost a loved one and want assistance in dealing with their loss and to talk with others who understand what they are going through.
Facilitated by an MFT Associate under the supervision of a licensed therapist.
New program now enrolling!
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Late Life Depression
Up to 25 free therapy sessions for those 60 and older who qualify. This is an evidence-based protocol focused on relieving mild to moderate depression.
For an initial assessment, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
or call 760-416-7899. 
In need of more connection? Join us Monday through Friday online in our Zoom Meetings, like Knit Together, Women's Chat, Men's Chat, and much, much more.
Get Resources
Located at 610 S Belardo Rd, Palm Springs, The Community Food Bank @ The Center is open for distribution every Thursday from 5PM - 7PM.
We are currently in need of the following items:
  • Oatmeal
  • Breakfast Items
  • Ready-to-eat meals (Easy to open packaging, no cooking necessary)
  • Eggs
  • Jars of pasta sauce
  • Peanut Butter
  • Protein Drinks (Ensure; Premier Protein; Owyn; etc.)
  • Toiletries (tooth paste; tooth brush; deodorant, shampoos, soap bars; etc.)
Drop-offs welcome on Tuesdays and Thursdays: 10:00 am to Noon and NEW Curbside drop off hours: Thursdays from 5:00 to 7:00 pm. Collecting barrels will be available in front of our food bank facility for easy, safe, self-service drive by - drop and go!
Also please consider purchasing online at websites like AmazonSmile® or from other online food suppliers of your preference, and deliver direct to The Center @ 1301 N Palm Canyon Dr, 3rd Floor. Palm Springs, CA 92262.
Help is here for paying your rent!
Lift to Rise is once again able to help local residents whose ability to pay rent may be impacted by COVID-19. Learn more about the fund, your eligibility, and how to apply here.
COVID-19 Funeral Assistance
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought overwhelming grief to many families. Under the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021 and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, FEMA will provide financial assistance for COVID-19-related funeral expenses incurred after January 20, 2020.
Visit here to see if you are eligible
Take Action
Share your COVID-19 Pandemic experiences
HARP-PS is conducting a COVID/HIV resiliency survey for people in the Coachella Valley. Please feel free to share with colleagues and clients for their engagement:
Resiliency Survey:
In response to the COVID pandemic, HARP-PS is collaborating with researchers at UCLA & USC to measure resilience in older adults during the past year of the pandemic. We are looking for people who can answer questions about resiliency, and how they’ve been coping during the Covid-19 Pandemic.
You may be eligible for this study if you are:
  • Over 50 years old
  • Either HIV- or HIV+
  • Live in the Coachella Valley
  • Comfortable taking the survey in English
You will receive a $20 eGift Card for participating
Participation in this survey is voluntary and should take about 30 minutes
Please click on this link to take a survey here.
Vaccines available!
Speaking of COVID-19 vaccines, our Health & Wellness partner Eisenhower Health are also a great resource to schedule your vaccine appointment! To schedule an appointment at the main Eisenhower Health campus in Rancho Mirage, click here.
The Eisenhower Health Covid-19 Vaccine Clinic Location is located at the Eisenhower Health Main Campus at the Annenberg Health Sciences Building, at 39000 Bob Hope Drive, Rancho Mirage.
If you are experiencing difficulties in making an appointment, please let us know This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we can connect you with someone that can help you.
Need help with vaccination?
This City led buddy program is for those eligible for the COVID vaccine
who might need help scheduling or attending appointments.
You can call any of the participating organizations listed above
including The Center - 760 416 7790
Business Partners
Support those who give!
Please help support the businesses who support The Center, the work we do, and who give back so generously to our community. Click here for a list of Business Partners with The Center.
At Crockett Law Group, they only help people who are injured in accidents. It's all they do. From Palm Springs to the greater Coachella Valley area and the rest of the state, they’ll back you up!
Learn more about our Platinum partner here.
Community Events
Fundraiser Screening Event!
Mama Gloria – A Documentary Film
Directed by Luchina Fisher
Join UUCOD and the Coachella Valley LGBTQ community in this online event
Saturday, May 15, 2021 @ 2–4 pm
Tickets $10 – Additional Donations Accepted
Luchina Fisher and Mama Gloria will lead a discussion following the film.
Art Sale Benefitting
The Community Food Bank @ The Center
Thinking about hanging up new art? Abstract artist Bret Maling is offering a discount on all remaining art now thru May 15th. All proceeds from sales will benefit
The Community Food Bank @ The Center.
Click here to view and inquire about remaining art, or contact -This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Connect Virtually
PALS seniors and future seniors, Planning Ahead before a health issue requires connections. Come join the conversations.
PALS Café:
Every Wednesday, 4 PM – 5 PM
Join PALS for an informal discussion on various pertinent topics.
Wednesday, April 28th - What Big Problem do you think Technology will solve next?
Wednesday, May 5th - If I ran the world the first thing I would do is...
Wednesday, May 12th - Update on Covid-19 and Vaccines by Dr. Richard Loftus, MD.
Zoom ID # 832 2405 1340, Passcode: 016864, Zoom Link here
Dial in: 699-900-9128
To find your nearest dial in # click here.
For more dates, sign up for email notifications at their website: palsinthedesert.com
Death Café:
Thursday May 6th, 2PM
It’s ironic that talking about death we feel better.
Register here.
Saturday, May 15th, 10 AM - 11 AM
When Dignity =/ Suffering: Autonomy Over End of Life Care
Register here.
Going back to the early eighties, this duo (later trio) have given back to the community in philanthropic ways and through their volunteerism.
West Hollywood is where their retail & wholesale business LASC was born. Don and Mike and Alfredo made this business special with their commitment to the LGBTQ community through hiring, training, connection, and philanthropy. Their commitment to their LGBTQ+ staff extended from employment to housing, and even getting insurance for their team. Aside from their own small business, they often partnered with organizations like the Trevor Project, APLA, Labor Day LA, and many others, raising funds by hosting legendary roof top Halloween & Gay Pride Parties.
In 2019, this fab family sold their business brought their strong values in volunteerism and giving back to our desert community. Without missing a beat they got connect to The Center, becoming Ocotillo Club members and volunteering. Don first began his volunteerism with The Center at the reception desk. Then came the call for help at the Food Bank and this household answered. Don and Mike have rolled up their sleeves to assist with Food Bank, and Alfredo join in when his scheduled permits. Don and Mike are an integral part of The Food Bank, in their role doing intake for Food Bank volunteers, making sure they are registered and all set up for distribution.
Charles, our Volunteer Manager, and our Food Bank team consider them all joys to work with, appreciate their kindness to the visitors, and are grateful to know they are always willing to learn new procedures/policies. 
They were here, and they were ours
In this space we honor the memory of folks in our community who have passed.
If you'd like to submit a name for inclusion here, please fill out this form.
Submissions received by 5PM Friday will be included in the next week's newsletter, for two consecutive weeks.
The LGBTQ Community Center of the Desert | 1301 N. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs, CA 92262
1515 Sixth Street, Coachella, CA 92236
  • The LGBTQ Community Center of The Desert

    The McDonald/Wright Building

    1301 North Palm Canyon Dr, 3rd Floor
    Palm Springs, CA 92262

    760.416.7790 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Open Monday - Friday 8:30am - 4:30pm

    The Center is a non-profit 501 (c)(3) public charity
    EIN # 33-0937301

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