As we go to press, we have just received word that Charles Ferruzza, 62, a legend in Kansas City print media and radio passed away on Jan. 28. Social media has been exploding with condolences and praise for him.
I knew Charles as a fellow journalist, and we’d often share conversations over Messenger or the phone. I had the pleasure of eating out with him when he was doing food reviews for The Pitch. Like everyone in our community, we looked to Charles for his great food reviews on KCUR-FM and hosting of shows on KKFI-FM. His style and wit were truly one of a kind.
Charles was also a theater critic, and his former employer, The Pitch, would often assign him to cover issues in the LGBTQ community because he was openly gay.
Just a couple of weeks ago, I was conversing with Charles about the death of my 98-year-old mother on Jan. 2, and he offered his condolences. My mother had dementia and so did his mother, so he fully understood the devastation of this disease. I told Charles that I would never want to live to be that old if not fully cognizant, and he agreed.
Then I wrote that I at least would like to outlive my 10-year-old dog, and that looks likely at this point. Charles replied: “Yes. Josie, age 12, is my last dog. I dread outliving her, since she loves me so.” Thankfully, he didn’t have to experience the pain of losing his beloved pet.
Charles’ dear friend Bob offered daily reports from the intensive care unit on Charles’ condition for the last couple of weeks.
We hope to publish a Memoriam in the next issue of Camp when we have more time to welcome contributors and his friends have time to mourn. In the meantime, like so many others in Kansas City, we’re really going to miss this amazing man.
KC Frontrunners/Walkers schedule
If your New Year’s resolution includes more exercise and social activity, you can’t beat the LGBTQ Frontrunners and Walkers. Here’s a schedule of the upcoming Sunday run/walks, which begin at 9 a.m., and locations.
The group also meets at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesdays on the north side of Mill Creek Park in the parking lot across from The Levee on 43rd Street, just west of Main Street. They’ll meet there until Daylight Saving Time changes on March 8. On Wednesday, March 11, they will return to Loose Park by the tennis courts at 52nd and Summit Streets.
Feb. 9 | MISSION HILLS
Meet at Arno Park, 69th Street & Ward Parkway.
Route: http://www.gmap-pedometer.com/?r=5924302 (4 miles)
Feb. 16 | WALDO
Meet at The Well Restaurant at 74th Terrace & Wornall Road.
Route: (trail) http://www.gmap-pedometer.com?r=5973024 (6 miles, but variable)
Feb. 23 | TOMAHAWK CREEK TRAIL
From 103rd Street, take Lee Boulevard south until it ends. Turn right and park in the lot.
Route: (trail) http://www.gmap-pedometer.com?r=5973029 (4 miles)
March 1 | SCOUT (OLD WESTPORT)
Meet at the Scout statue by the Skate Park on Pennsylvania, just north of 31st Street, by the firefighter fountain.
March 8 | PARKVILLE
Meet at English Landing Park, Highway 9 & East Street, by the Farmer’s Market sign
Route: (trail) https://www.gmap-pedometer.com/?r=7016962 (4.5 miles)
March 15 | PRAIRIE VILLAGE
Meet in the parking lot of Mission Hills City Hall, west of 63rd Street & State Line Road.
Route: http://www.gmap-pedometer.com/?r=6618196 (4.5 or 5.5 miles)
March 22 | RIVERFRONT TRAIL
Meet at Seventh Street & Pennsylvania Avenue in downtown Kansas City.
Route: (trail) http://www.gmap-pedometer.com/?r=6823543 (5 miles; route change)
March 29 | NORTH JOHNSON COUNTY
Meet at 3311 W. 50th St., Roeland Park, Kansas.
Route: https://gmap-pedometer.com/?r=7356649 (4.5 miles)
Need more info? Call Ellis at 816-531-4799, Randy at 816-516-1966, or Jon at 913-538-1856, or catch us online at http://kcfrontrunners.org or on Facebook (Kansas City Frontrunners & Walkers).
Through March 29
Discover the celebrated Queen Nefertari, the Great Royal Wife of Pharaoh Ramesses II, known as “The One for Whom the Sun Shines.” Experience the magnificence of royal palaces and tombs, including Nefertari’s burial chamber, considered one of the greatest artistic achievements in the Valley of the Queens. Explore the daily life of the village where tomb-builders and artisans lived, worked and worshiped more than 3,000 years ago.
The exhibition will bring together works that present the richness of life in ancient Egypt, focusing on the role of women – goddesses, queens and commoners.
For hours and more information: https://nelson-atkins.org/events/queen-nefertari-eternal-egypt. The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art is at 4525 Oak St., Kansas City, Mo.
Tickets are only $35 on AIDS Walk Night for Fun Home at the Kansas City Repertory Theatre. To receive this 50% discount, use the promo code “AIDS Walk” at checkout.
The KC Rep has been a huge supporter each year of AIDS Walk and is raising money for the walk throughout the run of Fun Home (which ends Feb. 16).
Winner of five 2015 Tony Awards including Best Musical, this show is a journey of self-discovery filled with memorable songs marked by honesty and humor.
The bar will open at 6 p.m. in the KC Rep lobby that evening, and the show begins at 7. Come early and have a drink with your AIDS Walk friends.
Performances will be at Kansas City Repertory Spencer Theatre, 4949 Cherry St., Kansas City, Mo. Tickets: https://kcrep.org/show/fun-home.
We realize you have many options for fine or casual dining on this annual dating holiday. For many single people, this is not exactly their favorite day of the year, but that’s why we have gay bars where you can go out and celebrate your singlehood! If you wish to celebrate your love over dinner, what better place than our LGBTQ-owned restaurants where you can dine with “family,” like Hamburger Mary’s, Café Trio, Bistro 303 and Ragazza. Make your reservations now.
The hilarious stand-up comic, actor and author Tig Notaro will perform at the Uptown Theater. If you haven’t seen her as a guest on Ellen or the late night talk shows, you’re in for a real treat. She’s also been featured in movies on the big screen and small screen. Her deadpan sense of humor is enhanced by her comedic timing and delivery. Notaro and her wife, Stephanie Allynne, have two sons.
The Uptown Theater is at 3700 Broadway, Kansas City, Mo. Doors open at 6 p.m., and the show starts at 7. Tickets: https://www.ticketmaster.com/tig-notaro-tickets/artist/1103960.
AIDS Walk Open Mini-Golf Pub Crawl
The pub crawl will be from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Teams of four will be $180 if registered by March 4 at midnight. After that, the cost increases to $200. Day-of registrations will be available at Missie B’s only. Prizes will be awarded to the top three teams and the best dressed team. To register: https://pitch.boldtypetickets.com/events/104173588.
A protest to preserve Drag Queen Story Times
Missouri State Rep. Ben Baker, a Republican, has introduced the Parental Oversight of Public Libraries Act (bit.ly/3aJHtS6), which would place additional oversight on public libraries in the form of parental review boards elected by voters. Under the bill, no library that receives state aid can allow minors access to “age-inappropriate sexual material.” Baker apparently is targeting the Drag Queen Story Hours that have been so popular in libraries. The law would include penalties and fines.
The protest event page (bit.ly/2O6Juy8) says: “We will be heading to Jefferson City, MO, in full drag to show senators & legislators that we aren’t the monsters here. That all we are doing is providing a space for learning and getting kids excited about reading. Knowledge is power! So join us at noon on the stairs of the state capitol, and make a sign if you wish. And please share this event, let’s make this huge!”
The protest will be held at noon on the steps of the State Capitol, 201 W. Capitol Ave., in Jefferson City. Many people will be attending in full drag queen or drag king attire. All LGBTQ and straight allies are welcome to participate.
Transgender Day of Visibility
The Mid-America LGBT Chamber of Commerce and Human Rights Campaign-KC will present the sixth annual observance of the International Transgender Day of Visibility.
This is a day dedicated to celebrating transgender people and raising awareness of the discrimination that they face worldwide. It is a day for transgender people to stand up and be counted and for cis-gender people (whose gender identity aligns with their sex at birth) to learn about and celebrate their transgender friends and family members.
A Transgender Resource Fair will be held from 4 to 7:30 p.m. and a reception from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the Grand Room at Grand Street Café, 4740 Grand Ave., Kansas City, Mo. Admission is free. A program will take place at 6:15 pm. Light appetizers and beverages will be available.
To register: Click on the events tab at: https://business.midamericalgbt.org.