Creating Vibrant Community
    by helping LGBTQ people along their way

    February is Black History Month





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




Hey there,
The day starts in quiet and peace and ends in weariness. At night I lay the day’s
frustrations down. Delays and disappointments, stupid things said on Facebook or on TV that fire up my nervous system. Anger at the world, hurt when I feel unseen and unheard. The days diminish me, the freshness of dawn is now stale old emotions in twilight.
In recent days, I have been practicing harvesting appreciation throughout the day. I love the red and furry texture of the new bottlebrush flowers. The bright yellow of the goldfinches and their songs delight me. Warm puppy dogs in bed, the smell of coffee and chocolate cake enchant me. The world brings to me its riches of colors and textures, sounds and tastes. In those moments of attention, the familiar is made fresh again and I am renewed.
Start today among friends
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
Spectacular hike!
Spring Walking & Hiking
Tuesday, March 2nd @ 9:15am
Tahquitz Falls
Beautiful and spectacular, easy hike.
2miles in and out, little elevation change. $12:50 entrance fee unless you have a pass for Indian Canyons.
Meet @ 9:15am at -
500 W Mesquite Ave, Palm Springs, CA 92264
Preview hike here
Wear good hiking shoes. Social distancing required and masks when we are stopped or talking with one another.
Bring 1 liters of water.
Eisenhower Health @ Home series
A Woman's Guide to Healthy Aging
As many women over 50 know, some things just get better with age. However, aging also increases the risk for developing health conditions that can impact your quality of life.
Join Cari Sudmeier, NP, Women’s Health Via ZOOM to learn about a few conditions that are common among women as they age - and what you can do to prevent or treat them.
Wednesday, March 10th
4pm to 5pm
Meeting ID: 975 8966 497
Register here
Coming in two weeks!
Join Kim, Gail, and Gwendolyn at Palm Desert Civic Park, 43900 San Pablo Ave, Palm Desert, CA 92260
Sunday, March 14th @ 11am - 1pm.
We will gather at Picnic Pavillion 1 and the surrounding area.
Bring your own food and drink, there is no sharing of food; physical distancing and masks are required within 8 feet.
Directions to Palm Desert Civic Park
can be found here.
Picnic Pavilion 1 is in the South East Corner of the Park shown left in the lower right hand corner.
TRASH Stories: Dorothy Allison
Published by Penguin Books
First published in 1988, the award-winning Trash showcases Allison at her most fearlessly honest and startlingly vivid. The limitless scope of human emotion and experience are depicted in stories that give aching and eloquent voice to the terrible wounds we inflict on those closest to us. These are tales of loss and redemption; of shame and forgiveness; of love and abuse and the healing power of storytelling. The 2002 release is updated with additional stories.
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
Women's Pickleball
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 will be providing beginner instruction Wednesday mornings.
Contact her for more info @
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If you are joining please sign the waiver here.
Limited to 10 participants
please RSVP to
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to confirm your spot.
Sign waiver here before
joining the group.
Check out the route here
Thursday Feb 25th, @ 10AM.
Meet up at the rear of the Palm Springs Museum's parking lot.
  • Masking and 8-10 foot social distancing while riding.
  • Helmets required
  • Electric bikes welcome but we request that you stay within eye shot of the group (especially on climbs, intersections, road crossings)
  • Observe rules of the road (traffic lights, use hand signals and bike lanes) 
  • Liability releases & safety review will be done before we start the ride.
February 28th @ 1PM
Facebook Live Event
During the last few days of Black History Month, we invite you to check out programming from Brothers of the Desert, Lucy & Gail, The L-Fund, and more. Check out the Black Gay Film Directors' Showcase Thursday Feb. 25th and Friday 26th, a Wine Tasting event (virtual or in-person) on Saturday, Feb 27th.
Join host Sweet Baby J'ai and guests Jazz in Pink, Ruthie Foster, Angie Harvey, Perry Lang, Yvans Jourdain, Anye Elite, Yuki Withrow, TaShia Asanti, Doris Read, Lorenzo Taylor and Wes Banks as they close out this celebration of Black History Month.
Members of the Palm Springs LBGTQ Community:
OutBook 1st Wednesday in March
The next OutBook Zoom discussion will take you to Paris. Irma O’Dell will moderate a discussion of “Two Lives: Gertrude and Alice” by Janet Malcolm. This acclaimed biography (New York Times Book Review: “Brilliant, penetrating and playful”) should provide a great discussion.
The group will meet @ 6:30 PM (if you want to socialize), 7 PM for the actual colloquy. You can check with the Palm Springs Public Library for book availability (only 229 pages). In these challenging times, it is good to have a connection with like-minded bibliophiles.
Click This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.to access zoom link
Shelter Dog Walk Day or just a Walk Day!
Some gals have expressed interest in setting up a regular gal walk, possibly some days with shelter dogs from the Humane Society of Coachella or the Palm Springs Animal Shelter.
These dogs LOVE to get out of their kennels as much as possible and they need exercise. It’s so good for them and for us, and is a good way to socialize them with more people and dogs. This is a way for us to help them to be healthy and happy and possibly to find them a good home!
If you are interesting in a walking group and/or walking group with shelter dogs, please contact Barbara @ This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
Enjoy our weekly newsletter below.
What do you dream of? What kind of life would you be living? What would the world look like and feel like?
Here at The Center, we have a vision of thriving lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, living authentically in supportive inclusive communities. We know this world is possible, and it will take all of us to get there. Every relationship you hold, every interaction you have, every time you show up in community, you are a part of creating a new world, and living up to your dreams.
While we are on the way to making this vision happen, let us know:
Which of these do you think you and our community needs more of?
Safety Net programming
Physical Health
Mental Health
Social & Fun
Life Enrichment
With vaccinations well underway for some, we asked how you were coping with the process last week. Most folks who answered have already received the vaccine or made an appointment to get it, while most of the rest of us are waiting for the later tiers when we're eligible. For the folks that let us know they need help, we've reached out them as we work with other organizations and the County to get people access.
Whether it's access to transportation, internet, fear due to undocumented status, or something else, there are plenty of people who need help and don't know where to turn. Let's keep all these considerations in mind, and recognize when privilege works in our favor and when barriers show up for others.
Director's Letter
It’s funny — I recently wrote about decisions and just how many different ones I’ve had to make over the last year because of the pandemic. And now, I find myself faced with yet another one: to vaccinate or not to vaccinate? I find it interesting how this virus has changed me and how I look at the world and my decisions. I am not an anti-vaccine person and I think about the fact that I haven’t had a flu shot in over 30 years and look cautiously at different vaccines offered at my doctor’s office. But after all the unexpected fear I have felt over this past year, it was truly a no brainer for me to get the vaccine. I gladly drove myself to Indio and stood in line with others at the fair grounds to get my first shot and now, my second. It released such a heavy burden from me. Trust me, I don’t think I’m immune and don’t have to wear masks etc., but just in making that decision to get the vaccine, I have some sort of defense that I am in control of and not the virus. I also have to recognize my privilege in having access to the technology, transportation and information needed to obtain the vaccine.
Unfortunately, a vaccine does not hold the same hope for communities of color, many of our seniors, disenfranchised and so many living under the poverty level. So my wish for my community is that we can assist those in need when and where we can and do as much as we can to make sure our neighbors and community have the access they need.
Candice Nichols
Director of Programs
Upcoming @ The Center
Since we can’t hold our typical annual Red Dress Dress Red Dance Party this spring, we’re keeping the spirit alive with a Virtually Red Dress Weekend benefitting the official 10th anniversary of The Community Food Bank @ The Center, on March 20th & 21st, 2021.
Join the fun, stay motivated and keep your body moving, in preparation for when it's physically safe for us to once again gather together on the dance floor (hopefully later in 2021!).
Visit our website below to learn how you can help
and to sign up!
Ongoing Programs
Gentle, seated exercise
with Lynn
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
Join in
Let's talk about Race continues
this month, as we round
out our conversation on the document "White Supremacy Culture" by Tema Okun from Dismantling Racism Works.
Join us at 5PM tomorrow night Thursday, February 25th.
Hosted by
Lex Ortega
Mis Amores
Un grupo de apoyo para personas que tiene familiares LGBTQ+.
Viernes 5 de Marzo
de 6PM - 7PM
Grupo virtual en Zoom
Por favor registrese con
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Queer Spiritually
continues this Monday!
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
through April
10AM - 11AM
Inner peace & trust
By finding our inner gifts and tools to access a quiet peaceful place using meditation techniques, we can better achieve our goals in life.
With this new 8-week program, Barbara Lippert will guide you to a peaceful place and access your own spiritual intuition and help better understand what can work best for you.
Mondays 2:30PM - 3PM
Register for
March NOW!
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
A safe space
to let it out
Hear from our Director of Behavioral Health about tools you can use to self-regulate and self-care during times of crisis and anxiety. Every Tuesday @ 11AM.
Hosted by Jill Hingston, Ph.D
Meeting ID: 972 112 189
No Passcode
To register, email
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
or call 760 416 7899
Racial Healing
Sign up Now!
This is a free, closed group (not drop-in), for persons of color who want to process and heal from racial injustice. The 10 weekly sessions will start Monday, March 1, 2021.
Facilitated by Christopher Rios, AMFT, and Leo DeOliveira, AMFT, via HIPAA-compliant Zoom calls, the group will provide a safe space and support for the processing and healing of racial traumas and injustices.
Starts March 1, 2021
Mondays @ 6:30PM
Black History is American History is Our History
Stories of Black LGBTQ Leaders
Throughout Black History Month we are sharing on our social media (Facebook and Instagram), images and brief stories of key Black LGBTQ figures who have informed, fought for, and influenced Black History and American History.
Ernestine Eckstein was part of the homophile movement in the United States. Before Stonewall she was a member of the Daughters of Bilitis and was photographed in 1965 picketing the White House holding a sign, "Denial of equality of opportunity is immoral," seemingly the only African-American in the group.
Make sure to follow our posts and share them with others as we celebrate and inform the future of what remains an ongoing struggle for equal and fair representation and inclusion in our collective community and culture.
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
The Community Food Bank @ The Center
Located at 610 S Belardo Rd, Palm Springs, The Community Food Bank @ The Center is open for distribution every Thursday from 5PM - 7PM.
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.
Take Action
Vaccinations - who, when and where?
Vaccination sites remain quite full and vaccine supplies are limited, so you are encouraged to keep checking often. The County is working on opening additional sites and creating mobile units.
State Vaccine Website: https://covid19.ca.gov/vaccines/
Get tested for COVID to help our County!
You can help decrease transmission rates by following public health guidance, physical distancing, wearing a mask, and confirming your status by getting tested for COVID at these locations, including sites in Palm Springs, Desert Hot Springs, and Indio.
Testing is for everyone, regardless of immigration status or insurance.
Join the Timothy Ray Brown Memorial Campaign
As you may know, Timothy Ray Brown – "The Berlin Patient" – passed away on September 29, 2020.
Timothy Ray Brown was an American considered to be the first person cured of HIV/AIDS.
To memorialize Timothy's life and advocacy for HIV/AIDS, a consortium of HIV/AIDS organizations have launched the Timothy Ray Brown "The Berlin Patient" Memorial Campaign (TRB Memorial Campaign).
The TRB Memorial Campaign has a goal of raising $15,000 to fund a memorial boulder and plaque in the National AIDS Memorial Grove in San Francisco and a memorial bench and plaque in the Wellness Center in Palm Springs.
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.
Padgett Business Services Palm Springs specializes in small businesses that are owner operated in the service and retail industry and can assist you with your accounting, bookkeeping and tax planning and preparation. At Padgett, they can help your business reach new heights, allowing you to rest easy.
Learn more about our amazing Platinum Business Partner here.
Community Events
Presents: "Unsettled:
Seeking Refuge in America"
Documentary Screening & Live Virtual Discussion Panel
Sunday, February 28th, 4PM - 5PM
In this powerful feature-length documentary, director Tom Shepard (Scout’s Honor) reveals the untold stories of four African and Middle Eastern LGBT refugees and asylum seekers who have fled violence and homophobia in their home countries and are resettling in the U.S.
For free tickets please register here.
Circle of Remembrance
Join Glendon Geikie, MSW, End of Life Doula, for an online Circle of Remembrance on Tuesday, March 9th, from 4 PM – 6 PM.
Limited to 15 people. 
Please email
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
to register.
Art Sale Fundraiser
Bringing Art, Color and Community to the Forefront of Healing
Palm Springs California based Abstract Artist Bret Maling will feature oil paintings full of color, texture and modern elegance for sale from March 1st – 7th.
The art can be viewed daily
10am - 5pm @
Studio Gallery
550 N. Palm Canyon Drive
Palm Springs
CA 92262
Proceeds from the sale will go to The Center, DAP Health and Desert Art Center of Palm Springs.
For more info, visit www.bretmalingart.com/
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
February 24, 2021 – BE BOLD, CLAIM OLD: Transcending Internal/External Ageism
March 3, 2021 – What is a Professional Fiduciary and What Can One Do For You?
March 10, 2021 – What Are Some of Your Guilty Pleasures During COVID?
Zoom ID # 832 2405 1340, Passcode: 016864, Zoom Link here
For more dates, sign up for email notifications at their website: palsinthedesert.com
Death Café
Thursday, March 4th, 2 PM
It’s Ironic that talking about death we feel better.
Saturday, February 27th, 10 AM - 11 AM
Let's Talk about Money: Tips, Resources, and Emotion
Upcoming Special Event!
Saturday, March 13th, 10 AM - 11 AM
Building Bridges: Exploring Gender Dysphoria
with Jami Woods Ass't Professor of Psychiatry, UCR
Physically distant social fun!
Our Friends at Gay Desert Guide have the scoop on physically distant events happening in the valley and beyond!
Tonight there's a Gaylarious "I'm sick of the friggin cold" LGBTQ Comedy Show! Thursday sees another Big Gay Golden Girls & 80s & 90s TV Trivia Party with Oscar Aydin. Coachella Valley Rep with The Whittier Trust presents: The Revolutionists. Saturday there's a visit to discover the Scandals and Secrets of the Metropolitan Museum. Dan Savage also continues his virtual HUMP! from Seattle, and Not Your Grandma's Bingo!
Check out these fun events on their Facebook page here.
Meet Lorenzo Taylor. Lorenzo is a retired public health administrator who relocated to the Coachella Valley from the Bay Area three years ago. He volunteers for various LGBT community groups including Brothers of the Desert, MAX, the Billys, and California Men's Gathering. An avid board game player, he started the Games Friends and Fun group, which met twice monthly @ The Center prior to the pandemic and he also facilitated a multigenerational queer chat group. He enjoyed square dancing with Boots and Squares, a local LGBT club. With the loss of these social outlets, he has turned his attention to online events that engage and connect our community, including discussion groups, online games, "talent" shows, and "speed-friending" sessions. During this period of isolation, he wrote and published a short gay romance novel (Rain After the Fire), performed protest poetry at Black Lives Matter rallies, and is currently working on an online cultural performance with the Coachella Valley Rep. In his spare time he loves art museums, choral performances and visiting National Parks.
A very special shout-out to Lorenzo from the team here at The Center for his leadership, volunteer facilitation, and participation in our programming, and across our entire community. Lorenzo, we're so grateful you've landed here!
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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