Airlines Get Ready for Bárðarbunga-ocalypse as Another Iceland Volcano is Set to Erupt

August 20th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
EYJAFJALLAJOKULL, ICELAND - MAY 12: The volcano Eyjafjallajokull erupting in Iceland on May 12th 2010, Ash cloud rises into the air wreaking havoc in international flights. Image via J. Helgason

EYJAFJALLAJOKULL, ICELAND – MAY 12: The volcano Eyjafjallajokull erupting in Iceland on May 12th 2010, Ash cloud rises into the air wreaking havoc in international flights. Image via J. Helgason

We all remember the travel hell bestowed upon millions when Iceland’s famously unpronounceable Eyjafjallajokull erupted, spewing plumes of ash as far south as Spain. Well, Iceland’s Meteorological Office is hearing rumblings from Iceland’s major stratovolcano, Bárðarbunga, and it is striking fear in airline executives around the globe who lost millions because of 2010′s disruption. A good indicator that an eruption is soon to take place is an earthquake, and the strongest earthquake measured since 1996 was just measured on Monday. Because of this, Icelandic authorities have raised their aviation alert to Orange, which indicates “heightened or escalating unrest with increased potential of eruption.”

We’ll keep you updated!

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World Eats: Culinary Road Trip in Switzerland

August 20th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Image via Passport

Image via Passport

I arrive at Zürich International Airport and quickly activate my Swiss Rail Pass (www.swiss-pass.ch), which is my one-stop shop for getting around the country. At only 216 miles wide and 137 miles from north to south, Switzerland is a relatively small footprint to cover, but, because of its neighbors, it offers a portal to a diverse range of culinary influences best experienced by rail tripping. My first stop: Fribourg (www.fribourgregion.ch).

One of Switzerland’s 26 cantons, Fribourg lies in the western region and the city of the same name features The Université de Fribourg (www.unifr.ch), one of the few bilingual universities in all of Europe. The city has a youthful pulse due, in no small part, to Cardinal beer, the local brew created in 1788 that flows at nearly every pub. While the city proper showcases farmers’ markets and the Gothic-style Cathedral of Saint Nicholas (rue des Chanoines 3. www.stnicolas.ch), I’ve got my eye on a particular café, but not before heading out of town to conquer my first Swiss delicacy: Gruyère cheese.

Keep reading over at Passport magazine online. 

 

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Secretary of Veterans Affairs Gets Handed Lawsuit Over Denial of Federal Benefits for Gay Couples

August 20th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Image via Passport

Image via Passport

Lambda Legal and Morrison and Foerster LLP have filed suit against the Secretary of Veterans Affairs on behalf of the American Military Partner Association (“AMPA”) arguing that the denial of benefits to same-sex spouses of veterans living in states that refuse to recognize their marriages is in violation of the US Supreme Court’s decision striking down the so-called Defense of Marriage Act.  “Gay and lesbian veterans have served their country and risked the ultimate sacrifice to fulfill their duty to this nation,” said Susan Sommer, Director of Constitutional Litigation at Lambda Legal. “Married veterans and their spouses, wherever they live, need critical veterans benefits, earned through years of often perilous service, to take care of their families. No member of our community should be left behind just because their home state continues to discriminate against their marriage.”

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Get Lucky in Las Vegas During Lucky Bear Weekend

August 19th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Image via Passport

Image via Passport

From September 26-28, score something a little extra for your honey pot at Lucky Bear Weekend. This fully loaded let-loose weekend takes place each year primarily at the Blue Moon Las Vegas with daily pool parties, breakfasts, and after-after parties. But the event, which is primarily free, has plenty of time built in for you to experience Vegas on your own terms.

Click here for more information. 

Want more events coming your way this fall? Click here for our events calendar. 

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Can’t Get Married in Your State? Enter to Win a Dream Gay Wedding in Seattle, Washington

August 19th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Image via Passport

Image via Passport

Seattle is proud to announce Marry Me in Seattle, a celebration of marriage equality that includes special year-round, customized hotel packages and offerings for gay and lesbian couples. To kick it off, Seattle is giving away four First Wednensday Weddings to same-sex couples from out of state. From now until December. Weddings include air transportation, hotel, ceremonies, and receptions at iconic Seattle venues—with everything you need to start your happily ever after.

Enter by clicking here! 

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‘God’ Launches Crowdfunding Website for ‘God Loves Gays’ Billboards

August 19th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Image via Indiegogo

Image via Indiegogo

The person behind the hilarious ‘God’ Facebook and Twitter has now taken his almighty Internet power to help launch a campaign to spread the good word that God in fact does love gays. We’re all very much aware that the hate-group The Westboro Baptist Church has been spreading their malicious messages across the country that “God Hates Fags,” especially in their home base of Topeka, Kansas, and now God wants to do something about it. He/she has launched a crowdfunding website to help raise money to erect a billboard in Topeka that says “God Loves Gays.” “BEHOLD! God is tired of having hate-speech put into his mouth by bigots. Therefore, the LORD shall put up a billboard in Topeka, Kansas that declares to all that ‘God Loves Gays’!” the Indiegogo website says.

Click here to donate. 

Video after the jump…

Read more…

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Amid Rumors of Split: Ellen and Portia Celebrate Sixth Anniversary with a Sky-High Surprise

August 19th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Image via Instagram

Image via Instagram

There have been rumors spreading like wildfire that the power lesbian couple, Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi, is on the verge of splitting up. But, a new photo posted to Ellen’s Instagram proves that the Hollywood duo is stronger than ever. “Look what my wife did for our wedding anniversary,” DeGeneres wrote with a picture of the two smiling and sky-written six in the background.

Congrats you two! Cheers to many more years together!

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WNBA Players Get Engaged

August 18th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Screen Cap via Instagram

Screen Cap via Instagram

Star center for the Phoenix Mercury, Brittney Griner, warmed hearts in the audience when she kneeled down on one knee and proposed to her girlfriend Glory Johnson, who plays for the Tulsa Shock. “Last Night was a Night to Remember I became the happiest person on this earth! (almost pass out but when that one word came out I came back to life) Me and my baby @missvol25 are in it for Life!” Griner wrote under a picture she posted on Instagram. The widespread media attention to the very public engagement comes just months after the WNBA announced that it would actively market itself to the gay and lesbian community, and allowing their teams and athletes to participate in Pride events across the country. [WaPo]

Congrats to a gorgeous couple.

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Iconic Plaza Hotel and Dream Hotel May Be Bought By Anti-Gay Sultan of Brunei

August 18th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Image via Facebook

Image via Facebook

New York’s iconic Plaza Hotel as well as the trendy Dream Downtown may become the latest accommodation acquisitions for the Sultan of Brunei—owner of the Dorchester Collection. According to the UK-based The Times, the Sultan of Brunei is seen as the favorite to obtain three hotels—The Plaza Hotel and the Dream Downtown hotel in New York, as well as The Grosvenor House Hotel in London—for an estimated $2.2 billion. All three are being sold by the Sahara Group’s chairman, Subrata Roy, who is currently in prison.

The Sultan has faced an international backlash following his decision in May to begin implementing a horrific series of penal code reforms that could lead to the stoning of women and LGBT Bruneians.

HRC is continuing their call for a boycott of the Dorchester Collection, which owns hotels in the US like Hotel Bel-Air and The Beverly Hills Hotel.  “The Sultan of Brunei could start executing women and LGBT people in Brunei as soon as next year,” said Ty Cobb, HRC’s Director of Global Engagement “The American profit stream that flows from his hotels back to his regime needs to stop.  We urge all New Yorkers to have one simple and straight-forward message for the Sultan: take your business elsewhere.”

 

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Gay Travel: What’s New in Gran Canaria

August 18th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Image via Passport

Image via Passport

vacation mecca off the sun-scorched coast of Africa, Gran Canaria is favored by gay and straight tourists looking for a budget break in the sun, but this Spanish island is steadily becoming more sleek and seductive with new five-star resorts, international restaurants, private gay yacht charters, and other fancy ambitions.

Located in the Atlantic Ocean, 1,800 miles south of mainland Spain, Gran Canaria and the other six Canary Islands are located outside the European tax zone, meaning goods such as alcohol, tobacco, perfumes, and electronics are generally cheaper here than in mainland Europe. The third largest of these islands, Gran Canaria has year-round sunshine, a popular gay nude beach, clothing-optional gay complexes, and dozens of gay bars in the twin resort areas of Playa del Ingles and Maspalomas. These factors altogether affirm Gran Canaria’s status as an affordable gay hotspot, attracting gay men and lesbians from places including the UK, Germany, and Scandinavia with the promise of cheap fun and sun.

Keep reading at Passport magazine online…

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