New LGBTQIA collective will host 'Thanksgiving' feast and educational event in St. Pete

The event at Allendale United Methodist Church will educate the public on the true origin of Thanksgiving.

click to enlarge A sign in front of Allendale United Methodist Church says, "Break the rules. Love everyone." - Allendale United Methodist/Twitter
Allendale United Methodist/Twitter
A sign in front of Allendale United Methodist Church says, "Break the rules. Love everyone."

As the State of Florida launches life-threatening attacks on people who aren't straight, a newly formed queer and trans grassroots group will hold a feast and educational event on Thanksgiving Day.

The inaugural "Found Family Feast" will be hosted by the Found Family Collective (FFC), a Tampa Bay-based group that seeks to be a source of support for those ostracized by heteronormative society at large.

FFC's "Found Family" feast will start at 2 p.m.  on Thanksgiving, Thursday, Nov. 24 and last until sunset at St. Petersburg's Allendale United Methodist Church, located at 3803 Haines Rd. N.
"We know queer and trans people have complicated relationships with holidays," Angel D'Angelo, one of the organizers of the event, wrote to CL in an email. "Some people are disinvited and others don't feel comfortable going home. Others had to move away from their home city so they can be more safe expressing their queer identity."

D'Angelo said that whatever the case may be, the event is open to all queer and trans people who want to join, no questions asked, and the event is free of charge.

At the event, the group will discuss the true origin of Thanksgiving. For Native Americans, Thanksgiving symbolizes the violence and genocide brought to this continent by colonizers.

"While this will ultimately be a fun and healing event, we will also discuss the truth about Thanksgiving and Indigenous suffering," the event page reads. "We will also discuss some of the violence the gay, lesbian, intersex, queer and trans community is facing."

After spending time on heavy topics, the event will have games, a feast, activities, and networking. Event attendees are encouraged to dress any way they wish to present, and can bring significant other(s) of any gender. Queer parents with children are welcome to join, too.

While the event is free, donations are encouraged if a person has funds available, and the group has a GoFundMe. Funds donated will help the group achieve long-term goals, such as building up a mutual aid society or club for queer and trans people (think old Ybor Italian and Cuban Clubs, except geared towards the LGBTQIA community.)

At a time when threats increase toward queer and trans lives under the leadership of right wingers in Florida, the FFC feels that now is an urgent time to build community.

"We will do this to keep each other safe, loved and warm as we build toward future goals of building a strong, sustainable queer community—regardless of laws and cultural shifts," the group wrote.

About The Author

Justin Garcia

Justin Garcia previously wrote for the USA Today Network, The Economic Hardship Reporting Project, Scalawag Magazine, and various other news outlets. When he's not writing, Justin likes to make music, read, play basketball and spend time with loved ones. 


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