Gay Men’s Health Summit: Pride Elevated

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The Village: Gay Men’s Health Summit will return to Utah this year from Aug 1-3 with a new theme, “Pride Elevated.”

And that theme, according to Jeremiah Hansen, the summit’s Utah AIDS Foundation liaison, hints at a new purpose for the conference, which began its life in 2000.

“The idea was to be holistic,” he said, “to take pride not in just our sexuality, but our whole aspect of being. So we wanted to get a variety of workshops to look at health from all different angles.”

Although sexual health is still the center of the health summit, this year’s three-day event includes workshops on such diverse subjects as cardio fitness, yoga, massage and even dream journaling in a Saturday workshop lead by Dr. John Shavers of the humanitarian group Interethnic Health Alliance.

“I met with [John] in the spring he’s had a lot of experience [doing this workshop] with different groups, including people with HIV,” said Hansen. “His work is about people opening up and expressing themselves and letting out what they hold in using different creative mediums.”

The summit has also brought back its bilingual (English and Spanish) track, thanks in part to the efforts of Alex Moya, the new coordinator of UAF’s Spanish language program who has developed the foundation’s service for Latino gay men, Hermanos de Luna y Sol.

Other programs at the summit include a workshop around the theme of the musical Rent, square dancing, a pool party and even a talk by QSaltLake publisher and editor Michael Aaron on the ins and outs of publishing a gay paper in Utah.

Cost for attending the full weekend is $30 in advance for online registrations by July 31 and $45 at the door.

The Village: Gay Men's Health Summit Schedule


6:00-7:00 p.m.

7:00-8:30 p.m.
Opening Session

Radio personality Dottie Dixon will provide a special introduction and the Village short film Pride Elevated will be screened. Kilo Zamora of the Inclusion Center for Community and Justice will also give an interactive presentation.

8:30-10:00 p.m.
Square Dance Social

Ross Lopton of the newly formed square dance group Temple Squares will call out several square dances, and “queeraoke” (karaoke with a twist) will follow. Cuisine Unlimited will also provide a number of appetizers (including meat and vegetarian options). Cash beer bar will be provided as well.


8:00-9:00 a.m.

9:00-10 a.m.

Sushi for Dummies
 Hotel Monaco chef and frequent Utah AIDS Foundation volunteer Carl Navales will teach participants how to make their own sushi through demonstrations and tips on everything from preparing sushi rice and slicing raw fish to pressing sushi roles. Samples will be available for tasting. Please wash your hands before participating.

10 Percent: A Queer American History
Utah Pride Center Youth Program Coordinator and former president of the University of Utah’s Queer Student Union Bonnie Owens will give this lecture about the language, history, symbols and culture of queer America.

Moving Meditation
Life and Educational Coach  and yoga teacher Andrea Kalvesmaki invites participants to explore their health, their body and its natural movement in this innovative hands-on workshop that uses a system known as EDGU (edge-you). Developed by Jeffrey “Page” Redman, EDGU is a form of “evolutionary spinal maintenance” that isolates the movement of the spinal column to help balance body, mind and the central nervous system while opening up practitioners’ spirits.

10:15-11:45 a.m.

A Tale of Two Males; the Story of Dating and Relationships
Chuck Diviney, a domestic violence specialist and clinical mental health counselor, and Josh Bytendorp, a UAF case manager, present this interactive, audience-driven workshop on helping men in relationships (or looking for relationships) keep the “fire” going. Along with fielding questions about such issues as love, sex, domestic violence, substance abuse and communication, Diviney and Bytendorp will also discuss the basics of familial, friendship and sexual/romantic relationships.

Spicy Sex
UAF Director of Programming Tyler Fisher and Salt Lake Valley Health Department health educator Reese Serr present this workshop focused on tips to keep your sex life hot, creative and safe. Be prepared for frank discussions about sex toys, lube, role playing and safer sex tips that move beyond condoms.

Write it out! Creative Journaling
Art therapist Dean Pappas leads this workshop on using paper journals to resolve interpersonal problems, access dreams, materialize desires and explore feelings. Come prepared with your personal goals and be prepared to explore them.

Queer Sports 101
Members of the Salt Lake City Gay Athletic Association, the Queer Utah Aquatic Club, Team TryAngles’ Cycle Club and others discuss their organizations and provide group workshops on sport-specific skills.

Secretos de Alcoba. Al descubierto! (Bedroom Secrets. Uncovered!)

En este taller tendremos juegos y conversaciones sobre lo que nos enciende,  nos gusta, quien y que nos atrae y como comunicarnos mejor antes, durante y despues del sexo para disfrutarlo mucho mas. Acompaña a Alex Moya y a Mario Carreno de Hermanos de Luna y Sol de UAF en esta ardiente conversación mientras exploramos un poquito más todo tu cuerpo y personalidad como partes importantísimas para sexo mucho mejor.

In this workshop we got some games and conversations about what turns us on, what we like, who and what we find attractive and how to communicate better before, during and after sex to enjoy it much more. Join Alex Moya and Mario Carreno for UAF’s  Hermanos de Luna y Sol in this hot conversation while we explore a little bit more all your body and personality as important factors for greater sex.

11:45 a.m.-1:00 p.m.

Cuisine Unlimited caters this lunch sponsored by Glaxo-Smith Kline. Vegetarian and meat options are available.

12:00-1:00 p.m.

Lunch Presentation: HIV and Substance Use

HIV and hepatitis specialist Dr. Ken Fisher, MD, discusses the impact of substance abuse on people with HIV, including drugs other than crystal meth that can be HIV transmission risks and whether or not cannabis is a good alternative to other pain medications.

1:00-1:45 p.m.

This intense exercise explores labels and the preconceptions attached to them. Lead by R. Kilo Zamora, executive director of the Inclusion Center, and the Village core group.

2:00-3:30 p.m.

Monogamy vs. Manhunt
Joseph Richards of Planned Parenthood leads this discussion about healthy, affirming sexuality, monogamy and non-monogamy.

The Use of Dreams in the Waking World
Dr. John Shavers of the humanitarian group Interethnic Health Alliance leads this workshop on dream interpretation, lucid dreaming and the role of dreams in psychological and physical health.

Gay Rags in Utah? Hellalujah!
QSaltLake’s own Michael Aaron discusses the ins and outs of running a gay newspaper in the nation’s reddest state.

Massage: Give as Good as You Get
Massage therapists Paul Campbell and Zack Phifer lead this workshop/demonstration on giving a good massage to alleviate stress and relax muscles. Wear loose fitting clothing and bring a yoga mat or towel.

Conócete a ti mismo!
En compañía de Manuel descubramos como mejorar nuestra relación… con nosotros mismos. Tienes amigos, novios, familia, pero tambien te tienes a ti mismo, ven a platicar sobre tu conección contigo mismo y como el conocerte mejor te dará la oportunidad de salir adelante yllevar una vida mejor.

Join Manuel de la Torre-Soriano for this unique, interactive and bilingual workshop about acting and exploring all aspects of your personality.

3:45-5:15 p.m.

Sexaliciously Single in Salt Lake City
This workshop focuses on helping single men overcome the hurdles that come with not being in a relationship, including how to love oneself in all aspects of one’s life. Workshop leaders Chuck Diviney and Josh Bytendorp encourage audience participation, questions and feedback.

El Sueño Americano (The American Dream)
Ahora que estás aquí asegúrate de llegar al éxito. Has tomado el paso mas importante en tu búsqueda por el Sueño Americano, dejaste tu país y ahora vives en una cultura diferente con sus sistemas y sus retos. Descubre como puedes lograr que tu Sueño Americano se haga realidad, Joseph discutirá diferentes temas, por ejemplo como tener buen credito o comenzarlo, la importancia de aseguranza médica, seguro social, el lenguage y otros retos que como inmigrantes encontramos. Juntos planearemos tu camino al éxito.

Joseph Acosta addresses the challenges immigrants face in working towards the American Dream, including building good credit, getting health insurance and social security and learning a new language.

Build Your Own Religion
Methodist clergyman Franklin Evans leads this panel discussion and workshop contrasting organized religion and spirituality, and exploring the religious similarities of different faiths.

Self Defense
Kerry Bell demonstrates defensive techniques, discusses the connection between mind, body and spirit in self-defense and the whys and wherefores of reporting same-sex domestic violence to police.

Ask a Doc
Dr. Kelly Butler answers the questions men might be too embarrassed to ask their doctors, including the ins and outs of anal sex, steroids, prostate health and HIV transmission, as well as the ways gay men can care for their physical and sexual health.

5:30-6:45 p.m.

Fight for Your Rights
Equality Utah Field Coordinator Lauren Littlefield leads this discussion on the important political issues facing Utah’s queer community today, the threats to civil liberties and opportunities for equality in the upcoming legislative session. She will also offer suggestions on how individuals can work to influence public policy.

RENT: the Musical, Learn to Live for the Moment!
Using the popular broadway musical Rent’s focus on living in the moment, Chuck Nuttall, LCSW, will discuss ways in which gay men can apply specific tools of mindfulness to their daily lives.

The Utah AIDS Foundation will offer HIV testing with the Oraquick test, which delivers results in about 30 minutes.

Boot Camp Cardio
Reggie Murdock of IROCK Fitness leads this workshop about techniques gay men can use to motivate themselves to work out. He’ll cover the basics of an effective cardio workout and will lead the group in a mini exercise. Wear loose fitting clothing.

Gay Cops
Sergeant David Sperry, Corporal Kerry Bell and other public safety officers discuss coming out of the closet on the police force and public safety issues that are of concern to gay men. These will include steps officers have taken to curb cruising in public parks, teen sex laws and reporting same-sex domestic violence and anti-gay discrimination.

7:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.

BBQ Pool Party with QUAC
QUAC hosts a poolside BBQ dinner with music provided by DJ Chris. Vegetarian and meat options will be available, as will a cash beer bar.


10:00-11:00 a.m.

Poolside Brunch Social
Food by gay dining/social group Spicy Dinners at Kevin Wethington's home.

11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.

Closing Session "Now What?"
Zack Phifer leads the closing session about how to take what participants have learned into the greater community.

For more information visit ugmh.com.

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