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Emmy’s 70th was a coming of age for LGBT



The 70th annual Emmy Awards gave the LGBTQ community historic, almost matter of fact visibility, with more LGBT winners than ever before. Los Angeles Blade’s Susan Hornik played a major part in her whirlwind week covering numerous awards events. Here’s a recap:

Winner Highlights

Executive producer Ryan Murphy was elated about winning the Emmy for FX’s “The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story.”

“This was a story I was passionate about very early on,” he said backstage at the pressroom. “I wanted to tell the story. I was in L.A. five years when Andrew Cunanan started his spree. I felt it was a story that needed to be told. The themes and issues that we talk about in the show are as modern as ever, if not more so.”

Murphy added that he was always “happy” to make a political statement in everything he does.

“The statistic that I said, which was one out in four LGBTQ Americans will be the victim of a hate crime, is true and heinous. As a gay man who was told when I started off in the business that I could not even write in 1998 a gay character…the idea that now, 20 years later, I get to tell the story and proselytize for my community is important to me.”

RuPaul made Emmy history, with “RuPaul’s Drag Race” becoming the first competition show to win the Outstanding Reality-Competition Series and Outstanding Host for a Reality or Reality-Competition Program award in the same year.

During the pressroom interview, the veteran drag performer/singer/actor talked about why the series is so popular.

“There’s an interesting balance of entertainment and deep stories that really touch our audience. We started out this show to celebrate the art of drag, and in doing so, we brought along a bunch of kids who had varied backgrounds.

“We have challenges that are fun, but these kids bring their courage and their stories, and that is what the heart is.” RuPaul also said the series “adds a little relief” during this time, in which “we’re living in a country that is very divided.”

We celebrate people who dance outside the box, and those are my favorite kind of people,” he noted. “Those stories need to be told, and I think there is value in those stories for everyone, not just drag queens.”

HBO hosted its 20th anniversary Emmy party at West Hollywood’s Pacific Design Center on Sept. 17 and it brought out some of the night’s biggest stars, straight and LGBT alike. (Photo by Susan Hornik)

HBO Party

This was HBO’s 20th large scale Emmy Party & the 16th consecutive HBO Emmy Party, held at the Pacific Design Center, was all designed by Billy Butchkavitz.

This year’s theme was the garden of eden, where Butchkavitz incorporated flora & fauna, insects & serpents all with a modern twist. The event’s structures, textiles, carpets, furniture, tabletop dressings, perimeter decor & large scale sculptures were all curated to create a fanciful garden setting.

Of course the food was impressive too, Wolfgang Puck Catering designed a custom buffet supper for the thousands of HBO guests.

At the party, writer/performer, Frank DeCaro, talked with the Blade about the excitement he felt after watching the awards.

“I can’t truly gauge the state of LGBTQ representation on screen — that’s a job for GLAAD — but I can say it was a banner year for LGBTQ wins at the Emmys. Ryan Murphy, RuPaul, ‘Queer Eye,’ ‘Drag Race,’ and ‘The Assassination of Gianni Versace’ all took home major awards,” he enthused.

“These aren’t sanitized-for-your-protection gays, either. These are full-strength gays. Some are quite literally screaming queens, and hooray for that!!! As one of Ru’s team once said to me, ‘When a drag queen wins an Emmy, we all win!’ Now let’s make sure the trans deliciousness of ‘Pose’ snatches armloads of trophies next September!”

Indie actor Massimo Dobrovic with Call Me By Your Name producer Howard Rosenman. (Photo by Susan Hornik)

Indie actor Massimo Dobrovic had a grand time dancing to the fabulous edm beats at the party, and felt hopeful about a more inclusive Hollywood community.

“I can’t hide my enthusiasm toward all the marvelous LGBTQ friends that won! Ricky Martin has been one of my biggest idols all my life, because of his charisma, dancing ability and persona. Ryan Murphy inspires me everyday of my life, as I also work on horror-themed programming.”

Massimo has three projects, “Behind the Curtain of the Night: Secrets of Karma” coming out this fall with Marcia Cross and Brandon Fraser; “Nation’s Fire” coming with Bruce Dean and the miniseries, “Age of the Living Dead.”

Gifting Suites

At the GBK’s gift lounge, Wen Hair and Bodycare was a gift from celebrity stylist Chaz Dean. (Photo by Susan Hornik)

GBK Productions produced their signature luxury gifting lounge for nominees and presenters. Over 100 celebrities, influencers and press enjoyed the music, food, and this season’s most exclusive products.

Among the many guests were gay nominee Titus Burgess (“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”) Tyler Henry (“E! Hollywood Medium,”) and Rex Lee (Young and Hungry). Gay hair stylist Chaz Dean, who runs Wen Hair and Bodycare, donated a years’ supply of products and dry styled the guests.

Guests were welcomed by title sponsor Pilot Pen, where they were gifted G2 pens, fountain pens, and a Plumix calligraphy set. Other highlights included chair massages from Burke Williams along with a gift bag containing Youth Cell activator, a pumpkin mask and a 3 day spa pass.

An innovative gift was the Athenromas candle therapy for pets—you burn the candle and the anxiety your pet has disappears! And there was a charity angle too; Stray Cat Alliance, Global Women’s Empowerment Network and Educating Young Minds were the nonprofits who all received donations. Guests also enjoyed sandwiches from Ike’s Place as well as a $1000 GC, and catering by Rib Line’s Award Winning chef, Brian Appiano.

Fig & Olive opened its doors to Bergman’s Style Lounge and Party. Over 100 of Hollywood’s finest turned out to celebrate and honor the television industry’s Emmy® Nominated actors, former winners, presenters, stylists and industry VIPS.

Hosted by Green Horizon and presented by Precious Vodka, the lounge featured an array of fashion for him and her including couture gowns, bespoke tuxedos & suits, men’s grooming products, beauty, skin & hair care, jewelry collections, accessories, fashion forward luggage, Napa Valley wines, luxury coffee, teeth whitening, chic chapeaus, fabulous fragrance, everything for the pampered baby, gourmet cuisine.

In the spirit of giving back, guests & sponsors made monetary donations and/or donated unwrapped gifts for young adults for a Pre-Holiday Gift Drive benefiting “Wednesday’s Child,” a weekly segment airing on KTTV FOX 11 News, with anchor Christine Devine.

The program highlights ‘harder to place’ young adults in the LA County foster care system who are in need of adoptive families. In Los Angeles County, alone, there are over 30,000 children receiving child welfare services,” said social worker, Dr. William Wong.

Bergman always invites at least 2 foster children to join in on the festivities and experience what it feels like to be treated as a VIP.

At Doris Bergman’s Style Lounge, guests were gifted Napa wines from (Photo by Susan Hornik)

Vendors at the event included Lollies & Lace couture baby clothing; Twisted Silver; My Saint, My Hero blessing bracelets; Porto Vino handbags and messenger bags; Sunder Sparkling Beverages; Hint Water; Sue Wong Couture and Fragrance; Nourish Modern Wellness Skin Care; Chef John of Emporium Thai; Mobile White; Kam Shield;; Goldinger’s Print Tees; Let’s Cake; Zirconmania; Diamond Veneer; Mind In Sole insole foot massage; Emmy’s Hope Dog Accessories; Rhonda Shear Aah! Bras; Rock Your Hair; Zangu Language App; Bitmar Streaming Subscriptions; Filam Luxury Coffee; Junkless Granola Bars; “Shark Tank” Winning BeatBox Portable Party Punch; Planet Beauty; Popsockets phone accessories; The Hollywood Trinity; Popcornopolis and VIP Gift Bags provided by Emmy’s Hope & Kam Shield.

(Photo by Susan Hornik)

Celebrity Connected featured an array of great gifts for the gay celebs that attended. One of the fan favorites was The Buttress Pillow—a pillow in the shape of your butt! (the perfect item if you are missing your honey!)

Said Cheryl Hines, “Curb Your Enthusiasm”: I love all the different fun items like this pillow at Celebrity Connected. It’s presented in such a fun way, my daughter and I have having a great time.”

Other highlights: Jade J gifted sleek power banks to charge one’s electronic devices, and Rescue Brewing served beer to guests while talking about their passion,raising money for animal awareness.

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Community Services - PSA

LA County Parks winter classes are happening NOW!

Whether you’re looking to learn a new skill, pick up a hobby or instrument or simply be more active, there’s a class for everyone



Photo Credit: County of Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES – LA County Parks is here to make your 2022 memorable. If you have not yet taken one of our classes, now is the time to register! Meet us safely outdoors at a park near you or join a class virtually from the comfort of your own home.

Whether you’re looking to learn a new skill, pick up a hobby or instrument or simply be more active, there’s a class for everyone. We offer a wide range of classes (held outdoors or virtually) for all ages.


Here are just a few of the many classes we offer!

  • Arts & Culture: Music Mondays 🎵 Family & Me Music Class  
  • Computers and Technology: Become a Roblox Developer 💻 
  • Exercise and Fitness: Morning Senior Stretching (Virtual), Adrienne’s Salsa Cardio (Virtual) and Jay’s Fitness 365 Athletes ️ 
  • Health & Wellness: Brain Fit for Work and Life (Virtual), Integrating Essential Oils into your Everyday Life (Virtual) 🌱, Sound Bowl Healing Meditation  
  • Martial Arts: Karate and San Do Kai Karate  
  • Performing Arts, Music & Culture: Acting for the Camera (Virtual) 🎭, Ballet and Tap Dancing, Ballroom & Latin Dance 💃 and Modern Middle Eastern Belly Dance 
  • Special Interest Classes: Build, Paint & Race An Army Battle Tank, How to Become a Certified Livescan Provider (Virtual), Intro to Fashion Design (Virtual) 👗, Parent & Child Red Cross CPR, First Aid, AED and more 
  • Sports: Badminton, All Level Softball Clinics and European Tennis Academy 🎾


Our quick and easy 24/7 online registration system Active Net allows you to manage everyone’s schedule through a single household account. Sign up for Winter Classes for yourself, partner and children from your smartphone or computer. To learn more about Active Net, visit  

COVID-19 Safety Guidelines for In-person Classes:
The health and well-being of park guests and staff is our top priority. In accordance with LA County Public Health, currently masks are required at all times for all participants.  Participants must maintain six feet physical distance from the instructor and staff at all times.

Follow LA County Parks on social media: Facebook and Twitter/Instagram/TikTok @lacountyparks.

Share your experience using #LearnSomethingNew at #LACountyParks.  

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Community Services - PSA

We’re Hiring! Become a LA County Pool Lifeguard!

Candidates will get paid for a 64-hour training which includes becoming certified though the American Red Cross in Emergency Medical Response



Castaic Sports Complex Aquatic Center (Photo Credit: County of Los Angeles)

LOS ANGELES – LA County Department of Parks and Recreation is hiring! This summer, the Department aims to hire over 250 new lifeguards to work at our 30 aquatic facilities, all across LA County. Not only is lifeguarding a fantastic way to kickstart your career, but it’s a great opportunity for young adults looking for part time employment while in school or looking for a career as a first responder.

Pool Lifeguards will receive a starting pay of $18.27, well above the minimum wage with opportunities to work year round. Applicants must be 17 years of age by time of appointment.

Those who meet the initial requirements will then be required to sign up and pass the Los Angeles County Swim Test. The Los Angeles County Swim Test consists of a 500-yard swim test that must be completed under 10 minutes. Upon completion of the test they will be invited to Pool Lifeguard Academy.

Candidates will get paid for a 64-hour training which includes becoming certified though the American Red Cross in Emergency Medical Response, CPR, AED, Lifeguarding, and First Aid.


Our Aquatics team is eager to help as many prospective candidates and interested students start a career path that can provide them with so many opportunities beyond lifeguarding!

Those who are interested in becoming a Pool Lifeguard are encouraged to attend an online “Open House” session to learn more about the position and answer questions.


Session 1: January 19, 6pm
or call in:+13237766996,,17084440#

Session 2: January 25,  5pm
or call in: +13237766996,,573214358#

Session 3: January 26,  4pm
or call in: +13237766996,,602797897#


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Community Services - PSA

Missing woman in WeHo, public’s help sought



Graphic via the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department

WEST HOLLYWOOD – The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is asking for resident’s assistance in locating thirty-year-old Dalia Taqali who disappeared from West Hollywood Sunday night.

Taqali was last seen around 5 p.m. in the 1100 block of North Genesee Avenue, according to a news release from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. Taqali is developmentally disabled and suffers from dissociative identity disorder, the Sheriff’s Department stated.

Taqali’s family is concerned for her well-being and is asking for help finding her.

Investigators said she may be headed near the area of Sunset Boulevard and North Curson Avenue in Hollywood.

Taqali stands 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighs about 110 pounds with long brown hair and brown eyes.

She was last seen wearing a black hoodie, green backpack, black purse and blue stud earrings on both ears.

Authorities also said Taqali has a scar on her abdominal area and is missing a front tooth.

Anyone with information on her whereabouts is asked to call the Sheriff’s Department at 323-890-5500. Those who prefer to remain anonymous can contact Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

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