Connextions Magazine was recently invited to attend The Radio City Christmas Spectacular, presented by Chase at Radio City Music Hall. My partner and I took our kids to see this one-of-a-kind holiday celebration. We were Rockettes’ virgins, having never seen a live performance and we were excited to see what our kids’ reactions would be. Upon entering the theater, the magic of the holiday season begins to take over you and you can’t help but believe in the magic of Christmas and Santa Claus.
This year’s show features dazzling Rockettes dance numbers, New York in 3D, “Rag Dolls,” Rockettes as reindeer, the iconic red tour bus, Santa, Mrs. Claus, elves, ice skaters, the Three Wise Men and no nativity scene would be complete without sheep, donkeys and camels – Yes, real-breathing animals on stage! The only thing we noticed was missing on stage was a same-gender couple. There were several couples on stage portrayed throughout the show, and it would have been amazing to see a same-gender couple representing all of us within the LGBT community. However, we did not let this ruin our first Rockettes experience, and we are hopeful that soon, we will see the first ever same-sex couple dancing on a Radio City Christmas Spectacular.
The dance routines, the spectacular costumes and the meticulousness of each move by the Rockettes is one of a kind. They glide, move, slide, and kick with such precision that the entire troupe moves as one – not one hair out of place, and even all of the earrings match!
The Christmas Spectacular returns with some of its classic routines, and has reworked some to update them with a fresher content. “Rag Dolls,” originally debuted in 1940, and has been completely re-imagined for the 2014 production. The audience moves around New York City and even the North Pole, as we visit Santa’s enchanted toy factory culminating with the “Rag Dolls” number.
People of all ages, participate in this magical experience, which makes use of every part of the theater. The lobby is decorated to match the onstage experience, featuring a huge, Christmas tree inspired crystal chandelier which appears to be hovering over the lobby and upon entering you can hear all the “oohs” and “wows.” During the show, even the ceiling of Radio City Music Hall takes center stage with a light show projecting snowflakes, the New York City skyline, Christmas trees and many other images that appear to extend the reach of the stage. If you bring little ones with you, be sure to catch some confetti “snow” and ribbons, my kids are still holding on to them!
Since their debut in the Radio City Christmas Spectacular in 1933, the Rockettes have danced into the hearts of millions and spread Christmas cheer to people of all ages. They have been part of some of the most prominent events in the entertainment landscape including the 2013 Super Bowl numeral unveil, the 2013 MLB Home Run Derby, NBC’s hit show, “America’s Got Talent,” and various other special events including award shows, national television appearances, sporting events and Presidential inaugurations.
Ticket Information – Tickets on sale
Running now through December 31, 2014 at Radio City Music Hall®.
Tickets start at $45 and can be purchased online at www.RadioCityChristmas.com, Ticketmaster at 1-866-858-0007 or Radio City's Box Office (50th St. & Avenue of the Americas).
Box Office hours are daily, 10 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Ticket prices include a $5.00 per ticket facility charge. Tickets purchased via Ticketmaster are subject to service charges.
For Groups 9+ please call 212-465-6080. Visit radiocitychristmas.com for more information.
Connextions Magazine recently caught up with world traveler J.B. Blankenship and author of The Christmas Truck. From our conversation, we can tell J.B. is a great storyteller, he has a passion for it and he also seems to have a deep rooted passion for teaching and of course, Connextions Magazine’s favorite pastime – traveling.
Growing up in the mountains of Appalachia, he was bullied so much in school his parents made him transfer schools every year with the hope that the bullying would end. He came out at the age of 13. When he got his driver’s license, he would often visit the regional airport and pretend that he was one of the travelers. Sitting in the small airport café, he wrote in his journal about all the places he dreamed of visiting, but never actually expected to see.
But J.B. did get to see those places and a whole lot more that he would never imagine. He sailed around the world while working for the Semester at Sea program and described getting lost on a mountain in rural Japan and having to be rescued by Buddhist monks. He spent summers on cross-country bicycle rides volunteering as a counselor for Decycles, an interfaith youth summer camp and his winters taking ice climbing classes where he climbed frozen waterfalls in Northern Wisconsin. As a live-in high school home-school teacher, he took his students backpacking around the world. As if by destiny, it was his journeys and adventures, which led J.B. to meet people around the world, which would later help with the translation of The Christmas Truck into Italian, Dutch and soon to be published in Spanish.
One of his best friends, an Italian citizen who holds a Ph.D. in economics, translated the book into Italian while on a flight to Rome because “he wanted to share the story with his nieces and nephews.” The Dutch version came to be because Blankenship was visiting a remote macaw research center in the Amazon rainforest of Peru with a group of friends. To pass the time on the 8 hour boat ride up the Tambopata River, his Belgian friends translated the book into Dutch.
Although not yet a parent, J.B. has served as a parent figure and mentor to many children and homeless youth, teaching them, nurturing them, helping them find stable living situations and navigating the college admissions process. Currently, he spends his free time volunteering with SitStayRead, a Chicago based literacy organization that brings therapy dogs into struggling public elementary schools. Kids read stories to the dogs about dogs and then write their own stories. “Every week I get to help these awesome kids create their own stories that reflect their world. And I get to play with dogs. It’s pretty amazing!” he exclaims.
The Christmas Truck includes some of J.B.’s holidays’ traditions, like oyster stew, which plays a splashing role in the book, and although he claims he is not a fan of oyster stew, it was always served on Christmas Eve. The tradition of fulfilling the wish list of a needy child is something he started with his partner. The story follows Papa, Dad and their kid, alongside the retired Fire Chief Grandma and how they are able to save Christmas for a family in need. It teaches us that even when things don’t go your way, the spirit of the holiday season allows magical moments and adventures.
For Connextions Magazine review of The Christmas Truck, please click here.
Connextions is the LGBT Travel Magazine. The only LGBT magazine with a unique perspective highlighting travel within the USA and special international places.
Connextions published its first magazine in 2010 and has published a total of 16 issues to date -- one every quarter. The magazine spent 4 years on the shelves of Barnes & Noble, then in 2014 followed the trend to go digital. Now serving our readers through an app on both iPhone and Android.
The team at Connextions has worked tirelessly to build a large online social presence. Our following continues to grow daily. Our twitter followers are over 5,000 and our facebook fans are over 7,000.
What we SEEK:
Are you obsessed with traveling & researching stories online? Do your friends look to you on Facebook and Twitter for the latest trends, ideas, and online memes? Connextions Magazine is growing and needs a Social Media Ambassadors!
Connextions has a super fun work environment and we seek talented employees who crave learning new skills and aren't afraid to tackle big projects. As an intern you will get to work with a variety of real projects that will help us grow.
What You Will Learn:
We value all of our interns and go the extra mile to make sure you receive a learning experience that fits your career goals. You will learn how to work in a super fun and adventure-driven field, s we ll as develop networking skills.
The position begins Dec 1 st. A flexible schedule is required.
To apply please submit one to two paragraphs as to why YOU are the perfect brand ambassador for Connextions Magazine, along with your resume or CV. Also, please include links to your personal social media sites, so we can see a sample of your work.
Serious inquiries from fun people only! Email MVP@connextionsmagazine.com using the subject line "SERIOUSLY FUN INTERN".
Mission Statement: Connextions Magazine celebrates the lifestyle of the LGBT traveler. Making connections to travel like a local, whether on a quick weekend getaway or a luxury vacation. Connextions transports our readers through dazzling photography and insightful content about travel, dining, culture and style to destinations and memorable travel experiences across the globe.
Connextions Magazine Issue 15:
The Pride Issue. Featuring World Pride as well as 45 Pride festivals across America. Travel destinations include Hawaii, Hilton Head, Astoria NYC, WEHO, the Massachusetts cape & more.
Click here to read the digital issue.
Click here to download the Connextions Mag FREE app in the iTunes store and keep our latest issue, along with all past issues in your newsstand.
Equality Funds offers investors a “new kind of socially responsible investing”: investing in LGBT-friendly businesses
Equality Funds, a nationally certified lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) business enterprise, has announced the launch of Equality One, an investment fund for those who wish to invest in LGBT-friendly businesses. They also announced the criteria used to determine which businesses qualify as LGBT-friendly, offered statistics demonstrating that investments in LGBT-friendly businesses historically have produced higher returns. Additionally, they expressed their commitment to work with businesses that are not currently meeting these standards to help them become LGBT-friendly.
Marc Delphine, CEO & Founder of Equality Funds is a financial advisor serving his community for the past 14 years. He was inspired to launch an investment vehicle that would enable investors to support the LGBT community by investing in a fund that only invests in LGBT-friendly companies. He found that using assessments like the Human Rights Campaign’s “Buying for Equality Guide,” an annual publication that determines whether or not a company is LGBT-friendly, could be used to provide supporters of the community guidance for investment opportunities.
Delphine said, “Our research has clearly indicated that those companies which have been considered LGBT-friendly, over the past 10 years, have historically outperformed the market overall.”
Equality Funds’ investment portfolio is managed by James Cornehlsen, CFA of Dunn Warren Investment Advisors and screened by criteria that include a number of factors like policies and procedures banning workplace discrimination, same-sex partner benefits and community outreach.
“We want to offer our clients the opportunity to invest in something that not only could produce a higher rate of return but also one that aligns with their values of diversity, fairness and equality,” added Jill Nelson, Chief Talent & Diversity Officer. “Whether or not you are a member of the community, our focus on companies which value their people is one that has a recipe for success – a new kind of socially responsible investing.”
ABOUT EQUALITY FUNDS:
Equality Funds was formed in Portland, Oregon in 2011 as an investment company initially launching Separately Managed Accounts (SMA) to focus on a unique market niche within the domain of socially responsible investments (SRI). Equality Funds Inc. is an LGBT Certified Business Entity. NGLCC – (National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce) is the exclusive, third-party certification body that verifies that eligible businesses are majority-owned by LGBT individuals, and subsequently grants LGBT Business Enterprise® (LGBTBE®) designation to such businesses.
For more information, contact: Marc Delphine; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.equalityfunds.com 503.516.8793
"Top 50 Organizations for Multicultural Business Opportunities" Announced
DiversityBusiness.com –today announced the “Top 50 Organizations for Multicultural Business Opportunities. Over 1,500,000 diversity business owners participated in an online election to determine the “Top” fifty organizations and AT&T, Inc. was named the #1 company for providing business opportunities to diverse business owners throughout the United States.
The honor extends itself to another forty-nine major U.S. corporations which call themselves The Div50. This esteemed, elite list is coveted by the most successful companies in the United States and has become the most recognized and respected in the country. These companies truly differentiate themselves in the market place in a time when diversity is on the rise.
“The diversity practices of the Div50 has changed the course of economic inclusion and thereby the world as we know it”, said Kenton Clarke, CEO of DiversityBusiness.com. “The great diversity and vision of our country and our people have made this possible. DiversityBusiness.com is proud to have been a force in the business world for such positive change and opportunity. The initiative that we have led has been instrumental in equalizing the playing field and for that we are very honored indeed.”
The 14th annual list was produced by DiversityBusiness.com, the nation’s leading multicultural B2B online website for privately owned companies.. Over 1,300,000 businesses were asked to answer 10 questions about diversity business in the marketplace. Their answers were based on factors such as volume, consistency and quality business opportunities granted to women and minority-owned companies. Other large companies at the top of the list include Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., IBM, Northrop Grumman, Apple, Office Depot/OfficeMax, Lockheed Martin, Verizon, Cisco, Time Warner and Raytheon.
Top Honors for Top Corporations
While other awards and “Top” lists crown companies for metrics such as overall economic growth and returns to shareholders, The Div50 is an indicator of which organizations provide the best and the most business for diversity-owned companies. “In a marketplace that is increasingly as sensitive to diversity as it is to revenues, awarding the top buyers of multicultural products and services is becoming a natural part of the new socioeconomic food chain. Organizations that consistently buy the most products and services from diversity businesses, and that sustain the most mutually beneficial business relationships with their multicultural suppliers, should be recognized not only by the business community but also by the general public. That is what we have accomplished in creating The Div50.” said Kenton Clarke.
The Business Power of Diversity
As multicultural and female owned businesses gain more buying power and their lifestyles become more affluent, multicultural markets are growing in economic muscle. This in turn attracts more corporations, as they compete for market share. The Div50 list has therefore become the consumer guide for women and minority consumers. “As a diversity business owner, I appreciate the business we receive from corporate buyers; and in turn, when I buy products and services, either personally or for my company, I am much more likely to buy from the same companies that support my business or are supporting businesses like mine,” said Helen Levinson, principle of Desert Rose Design headquartered in Elmhurst, Illinois.
The Div50 is a listing of the top 50 corporate and organizational buyers of diversity products and services throughout the U.S. It represents the voice of over 1,300,000 diversity-owned (women, African Americans, Hispanics, Asians, Native American, and other multicultural groups) businesses in the U.S., in sectors such as technology, manufacturing, food service and professional services. It has become the Gold Standard to its members and their associates and reaches millions of consumers every year. In fourteen years, it has become a highly valued metric of corporate excellence in the diversity space.
A complete list of winners is also available at: http://www.diversitybusiness.com/Resources/DivLists/2014/DivTop50/2014Div50C.htm.
Place your advertisement in the marketplace and reach thousands of LGBT travelers!
Connextions Magazine Issue 15
Releases Summer 2014 (May)
Ad/Editorial deadline Mar 30, 2014
Family Travel/Group Travel
Off The Beaten Path Travel
Marketplace advertisements start at only $199 - we are dedicated to our readership and believe there is value in bringing our readers discounts from across the globe. Offering a coupon is an added value to both the advertiser and the lgbt traveler! Our target advertiser is the small business with a specific clientele. We maintain affordable advertising rates in order to reach these small businesses and bring them to Connextions readers.
If you want to see an advertisement from Lexus, please go read Travel & Leisure magazine. If you want to see local gay small business advertisements - you are in the right place.
Advertisements are placed on a first come, first serve basis and are limited. Secure your spot NOW!
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A Valentines Gift for you!
As featured in Connextions Magazine Issue 14, A Guide to Drinking through Valentines Day!
Enjoy these great cocktail recipes!
TRU LOVE includes Partida Reposado Tequila.
SANDEMAN CHOCOLATE PASSION includes Sandeman Founders Reserve Porto & Chivas Regal Scotch Whisky
CHOCOLATE COVERED CHERRY MARTINI with Exclusiv Cherry Vodka
CASHMERE COCKTAIL including Exclusiv Citrus Vodka
Click below to download these recipes.
Click here to read Issue 14.
Connextions Magazine Issue 14 features:
The Hotels Issue. Travel destinations include Wales, Chicago, NYC, Las Vegas, 2 resorts in the NY Adirondack mountains, Beverly Hills, St. Thomas, Dallas Texas, & Boston; Special feature on the Connextions Out n About RV roadtrip across America; Holiday cocktail recipes; & more.
Click here to read the digital issue.
Click here to download the Connextions Mag FREE app in the iTunes store and keep our latest issue, along with all past issues in your newsstand.
Connextions Magazine, the award-winning LGBTQ Travel Magazine, is your trusted resource for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer travel destinations, vacation ideas, fun travel videos, LGBTQ travel guides and the latest news relevant to our entire rainbow community. Connextions Magazine focuses on celebrating the LGBTQ Traveler providing information on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer travel, our LGBTQ culture, the diverse style of our rainbow community, adventures, gay romance, tips for Lesbian Moms, Gay Dads, Bisexual, Transgender Parents and families.
Connextions Magazine LLC - PO Box 242, Calverton NY 11933
MISSION: Connextions Magazine is The Travel Magazine for the LGBTQ community. Making connections to travel like a local, whether on a quick weekend getaway or a luxury vacation, Connextions transports our readers through dazzling photography and insightful content about gay travel, dining, queer culture and style to destinations and memorable travel experiences across the globe. We are your Connextions to the world!
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