(Las Vegas, Nevada) Although Atlanta and Washington D.C. are the undisputed capitals of Black and gay culture. Gays and by extension black gays are making their presence known in western desert communities like Palm Springs, Phoenix, and Las Vegas. In Nevada, a group called Black Queer Men of Las Vegas, BQMLV, is doing the much-needed work of building community and creating space for the Las Vegas black gay population.
Black Queer Men Las Vegas or BQMLV as it is more commonly referred to was founded by two members of the black gay dance community. Vince Collins ( pictured far left) and CJ Edwards (pictured far right) formed the organizations two years ago after noticing a lack of cohesion along with the area's community of gay men of African descent.
Black Queer Men of Las Vegas (BQMLV) is a social networking group birthed out of a desire to create community with other like-minded Black Queer Men. The group has developed into a safe space for BQM to experience more joy, healing, create opportunity, promote connections, and assist in the efforts of Black Gay Male Liberation from the stigma and hate that exists in the world we live in. BQMLV meets bi-weekly on Fridays at The LGBTQ+ Center of Southern Nevada, downtown on Maryland Parkway. Follow BQMLV on social media (IG, Facebook, Twitter) for current up-to-date information on all events, and upcoming meetings.
Another organization named Brothers of the Desert serves a similar purpose in the Coachella Valley which includes Palm Springs, a long-term Mecca for gay retirees. Despite the slightly different age demographics, both organizations demonstrate the way that black gay society is expanding outside of its urban roots.