Tag Archives: queer

Reading History for Calgary Pride

Wordfest kindly asked Calgary Gay History Project’s Kevin Allen to participate in their Community Book List series. The task was to come up with a list of 20 books that were meaningful to him. It proved challenging to limit the list to only 20! So, he chose his favourite theme—queer history!

Kevin writes: ““One can learn a lot from reading historical queer fiction to see how the LGBTQ2S community has evolved over the decades. This list includes some of the most celebrated, award-winning novels from our community, plus a few of my fan favourites. On this list, I have included some Calgarian authors as well as a couple of non-fiction historical surveys—one Canadian, one American—for those looking for an accessible and comprehensive understanding of our human rights struggles. I can read any of these books over and over and over; they have a special place on my bookshelf.”

Wordfest cleverly has included links to where readers can find the books (or e-books), through the Calgary Public Library as well as local independent bookstores. As we approach the season of Calgary Pride, consider a read from Kevin’s curated list.

Bonus: yycgayhistory project links for further reading/watching on six of these authors: Hall, Maupin, Cullen, Highsmith, Baldwin, Forster.

{KA}

Lois Szabo Commons Open!

Lois Szabo Commons officially opened yesterday, and although we could not be there, we hungrily read the press and social media accounts of the park’s launch. The honour is well-deserved.

Lois with friends and family at the Park’s dedication ceremony. Photo: Marlene Hielema via Facebook.

Lois told me she received so many hugs from the assembled crowd that it may have counteracted her pandemic’s hug deficit! She was particularly chuffed to get a hug from Mayor Naheed Nenshi (two of them apparently).

Here is a media round-up!

City of Calgary Press Release

CBC: Beltline park opens to honour Lois Szabo, Calgary LGBTQ leader

660 News: Lois Szabo Commons opens, recognizes prominent leader in Calgary’s LGBTQ2S+ community

Global News: New Beltline community space named after Calgary LGBTQ2S+ leader opens

Calgary Sun: New Beltline park commemorates LGBTQ2S+ community leader Lois Szabo

Calgary Herald: New park in the Beltline commemorates local LGBTQ2S+ community leader Lois Szabo

Although the media accounts are similar, they each have a different photo of Lois! {My favourite is the Calgary Herald’s below}

Congratulations Lois and thank you City of Calgary!

{KA}

Historic Calgary Week

July is one of our favourite times of year—not for the über-famous Calgary Stampede happening currently, but for Historic Calgary Week, running July 23-August 2, 2021. It is the signature event for the Chinook Country Historical Society, who program engaging history events all year long. An incredible number of volunteer hours go into making Historic Calgary Week happen; the 2021 iteration is cleverly subtitled: Unmasking Our History.

The Calgary Gay History Project’s Kevin Allen was invited on a mapmakers panel discussion on Tuesday, July 27 at 7:00 PM.

Behind the Scenes with the Mapmakers will tackle how one maps a city’s unknown histories. Kevin is joined by Calgary Through the Eyes of Writers Author Shaun Hunter and the Calgary Atlas Project’s Jim Ellis. They will chatter about charting the city’s cultural landscape, using maps to (sometimes literally) pin down the past. The panel will be moderated by Heritage Calgary’s Asia Walker and hosted online by the Calgary Public Library.

Register for Behind the Scenes with the Mapmakers: here. Registration is free, but spaces are limited.

Gay Activist Doug Young’s map of the 1980s Beltline: Glenbow Archives M-8397-1.

{KA}