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Meet a Local Queer Author, Attend Pride in the Wild, See ‘RuPaul’s’ Angeria Perform Burlesque, Go Camping at a Queer Music Fest

Sarah Bricker Hunt

Pride Month is officially over, but there’s plenty of queer summer fun on the horizon — in and out of air-conditioned spaces. Book lovers, take note of Sidetrack Bookshop’s Sidetrack After Dark series, including an event featuring queer local romance writer Amanda Woody. Or, head out to Detroit Zoo’s annual Pride event, Pride in the Wild, see a burlesque show at Five15 featuring “RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars” star Angeria Paris VanMichaels, go camping at a queer music fest or volunteer with Equality Michigan while showing off your trivia skills. 

1. Meet Local Queer Author Amanda Woody

Head to Sidetrack Bookshop in Royal Oak on July 24 for a meet-and-greet with queer Detroit author Amanda Woody, the latest event in the store’s Sidetrack After Dark series. Woody’s new novel, “Exes & Foes,” is a young adult romance sure to appeal to anyone who has been involved in a tricky dating scenario. The book follows high schoolers Emma, Caleb and Juliet, who are entangled in a confusing, dramatic, bisexual mess — the ideal setup for your next beach read on the shores of Lake Michigan. Woody will read from the book and hold a signing.



July 24, 6:30 p.m., Sidetrack Bookshop (325 S. Washington Ave., Royal Oak).

2. Get Wild at the Detroit Zoo

Bear Crossing Stock

Pride in the Wild, Detroit Zoo’s annual LGBTQ+ Pride event, might just be the wildest, if we take the four-legged and winged bystanders into account. The all-ages celebration features local drag performers, aerialists, DJs pumping out danceable tunes, a vendor mall, plentiful food options and more. Admission, which supports Affirmations, Ruth Ellis Center, Ferndale Pride, Camp4All, Trans Sistas of Color Project-Detroit and Free Mom Hugs-Michigan, includes a chance to explore the zoo’s 125 acres, where you’ll find more than 2,400 animals representing 235 species (not including the delightful humans in attendance). 

July 20, 6-9 p.m., Detroit Zoo (8450 W. 10 Mile Road, Royal Oak). Reserve tickets at bit.ly/3wcM66G.

3. Play Trivia and Volunteer with Equality Michigan

Feeling a little lost at this point in our political unraveling? Find your people at Equality Michigan’s (EQMI) LGBTQ+ Trivia and Data Entry event, set for July 11 at 6 p.m. at Affirmations, Ferndale’s LGBTQ+ community center. Come for the queer-themed trivia; stay for the reminder that no matter where this roller coaster takes you this election season, hate won’t win if we stick together. Bring a laptop and hang around to help EQMI log the more than 1,000 pledge-to-vote cards the organization collected during Pride Month. 

July 11, 6-7:30 p.m., Affirmations (290 W. Nine Mile Road, Ferndale). Register at mobilize.us/mobilize/event/641862.

4. Catch a Burlesque Show Featuring ‘RuPaul’  Star Angeria

Royal Oak’s Five15 will venture into the artful world of burlesque on July 12 in a collaboration with Noir Leather titled “Tease the Night: Bold, Breathtaking, Unforgettable.” Performers include Angeria Paris VanMichaels from “RuPaul’s Drag Race” and local legends Victoria Sanchez and Sabin. “Prepare to be enthralled by a spectacle where glamor masks enigma, and every performance is a revelation,” press materials for the event read. VIP tickets include a meet-and-greet with performers and preferred seating. 

July 12, 10 p.m., Five15 Media, Mojo & More (600 Washington St., Royal Oak).

5. Attend a Queer Music Fest and Camping Weekend

Camp It Music Fest

Get away for the weekend for a classic Michigan camping trip and the 3-day Saugatuck LGBT Music Fest July 19-21 at Campit Outdoor Resort in Fennville, just east of Lake Michigan beach town Saugatuck. The event features queer and ally musicians including pop singer Alisabeth von Presley, surf rockers Clovis and the Delroys, reggae artists Nikki Holland and the Dirty Elizabeths and emcee Sunny L.A. Reserve a camping spot at queer-affirming campitresort.com or stay at a local hotel or vacation rental — day tickets are available. 

July 19-21, Campit Outdoor Resort (6635 118th Ave., Fennville). Reserve camp spots and tickets at campspot.com/book/campitoutdoorresort.



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