By Erin Rook, PQ Monthly
After a lengthy hiatus, Charged+ returns tonight with a biannual social for HIV-positive men at Doug Fir Lounge. As opposed to its prior incarnation as a dance night at CC Slaughters, the new Charged+ will be a mellower event aimed at giving positive men an opportunity enjoy each other’s company.
“Even if people can’t come, or it isn’t their thing, we just want every HIV+ person within 100 miles to know that there is such a party happening, and that should they ever want to come out to it, they would be more than welcome,” says co-host Adam Michael Davies.
The social will take place tonight (Oct. 5) from 7 to 10 p.m. in the fireplace room (and part of the patio) at the Doug Fir Lounge. Organizers have reserved a number of rooms at the adjoining Jupiter Hotel and are offering discounts to attendees. There is a $10 cover to pay for the cost of reserving the space.
Davies emphasized that — despite the perceptions of a few — the event is not about sex, drugs, or barebacking. In an effort to offset that impression, he has changed the overall feel of the event from a dance party to a low-key social gathering:
Unlike our club nights in the past, there will be no DJ, no raffle, no themes…. Smart-casual dress code is encouraged. Bring your friends, bring an appetite if you’d like, and celebrate this twice-a-year event where HIV+ men can socialize, cruise, laugh, enjoy great drinks, and find great company.
Those attending along are encouraged to reach out to Davies and co-hosts Jason and Kel, who are committed to making everyone feel welcome.
For more information about Charged+, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Looking for a more virtual space to connect with HIV+ men? AIDS activist Jack Mackenroth recently launched a new social networking site — Volttage.com — that seeks to provide information, support, and resources for HIV-positive gay men while combating stigma and creating connections.
“Sex sells,” Mackenroth says in a release. “But we are much more than a hookup site. We provide an alternative for HIV+ men who often feel stigmatized and discriminated against on the other sites. As the site develops and grows, we will incorporate features like forums and blogs that will strengthen a sense of community and acceptance.”