Podcasts

Left of Str8 Podcasts Embarks on Big Gay Roadtrip for Charity

This summer, Scott Fullerton, producer of Left of Str8 Podcasts, will embark on the “Big Gay Roadtrip 3”. It is shaping up to be an unforgettable journey from Akron, Ohio, to Palm Springs, California, that will raise awareness and funds for LGBTQ+ advocacy and community support.

Bear World readers will remember Scott from the interview we did with him and his co-host, Jonny Shuffield, from the “Bears of a Certain Age” podcast last year. Scott is also the host of the “Left of Str8 Show”, “Standing on My Soapbox” and “5 Questions With…” podcasts in addition to overseeing all of the other shows on the Left of Str8 Podcast Network.

The aforementioned Big Gay Raadtrip trip will take place from July 3rd through August 9th, 2024, and will include a Kick-Off Event with the Bayard Rustin LGBTQ+ Resource Center in Akron, Ohio on June 19th, that will be part of their Juneteenth Celebration and Voter Registration Drive.

Scott Fullerton

From there, a vibrant series of events in Palm Springs are planned throughout July and early August featuring LIVE Celebrity Panels twice a week, and special events throughout Palm Springs.  The first week of the trip will be “Bear Week” where Scott will be joined by Jonny Shuffield. The duo will start with 2 days in Las Vegas followed by 4 days in Palm Springs that will feature a big Kickoff Bear Event with some very special guests.

The mission of the “Big Gay Roadtrip 3” is to empower LGBTQ+ communities, support pride centers financially, and create a platform for visibility and dialogue across the country. The two Pride centers that will benefit from the fundraisers are the Bayard Rusting LGBTQ+ Resource Center in Akron, OH and The LGBTQ+ Center of the Desert in Palm Springs.

Funding for this ambitious project is being raised through a multi-tiered approach which include sponsorships for businesses or individuals to purchase at Gold, Silver, and Bronze levels. Supporters can also contribute through a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo, which offers various perks including exclusive merchandise and unique experiences for donors like cooking classes, drawing classes, social media marketing classes and a movie and trivia Night. For more information or to donate click here.

With so many exciting events making up the Big Gay Roadtrip, we sat down with Scott Fullerton himself to get some extra special details on what to expect.

BWM: What gave rise to the Big Gay Roadtrip in the first place?

Scott Fullerton (SF): I am originally a SoCal Boy, born and raised and living there for 29 years before being “banished” (kidding) here to NE Ohio.  I had interviewed the owner of the INNdulge Resort, Jon, and we hit it off great and he invited me down for one of the slow summer months (it’s HOT there June/July/August for a month’s residency and bringing my guests for LIVE interviews at the Resort.  Since all my interviews were on the phone at the time I jumped at the chance.  It went so well the first year we did it again, and then…….pandemic.  This is my first time back since 2019 and with all the animosity towards our LGBTQ community the past few years I wanted to raise the visibility and raise some money for two worthy Pride Centers.

BWM: Tell us a bit about the work of the Bayard Rusting LGBTQ+ Resource Center in Akron, OH and The LGBTQ+ Center of the Desert in Palm Springs.

SF: In wanting to raise money for the community, I looked to find two deserving Pride Centers.  The Bayard Rustin LGBTQ+ Resource Center in Akron, OH serves predominantly our African-American community, but is welcoming to all and is severely underfunded, and finds trouble getting the same funds many other Centers get access to.  The Bayard Center serves a dinner every Wednesday night for those in need, has a food pantry, and a clothing closet.  They work with an amazing affirming church and a great Trans organization.  They recently moved into a new, larger facility and we are raising money to get them the equipment and supplies they need.

        The LGBTQ Center of the Desert has some amazing programs as well, including a mental health clinic that let’s low income patients come in for $10 a session. They have scholarships, specific programs for women and lgbtq youth, a food pantry and health and wellness activities like physical fitness classes.  Palm Springs has an extensive LGBTQ retired community, although that age demographic has been dropping the last few years, but they do amazing work with seniors and hey, I am a bear of a certain age, lol.

BWM: Before reaching Palm Springs you have planned stops in Chicago, Omaha, Denver and Vegas. Can you tell us a bit about what is planned at each stop?

SF: It’s going to be quick drive with only 1 night each in Chicago, Omaha, Denver and a 3 night stay in Vegas.  In Chicago, we are looking to get a couple of the local LGBTQ folks to show us around.  Podcast Guests Jim Verraros from American Idol and Sam Cushing the influencer have both been podcast guests, and depending on the holiday schedule are invited to show us around the city that night.  In Omaha, it’s the 4th of July so I will spend the evening at the “Omaha Mining Company” bar and catch some fireworks.  In Denver on July 5th, my hostess will be Drag Queen Jessica L’Whor who will be showing me around the city, and we’ll end up at a show and dinner at Hamburger Mary’s. Vegas will be July 6-9th and kicks off our Bear Week which means food and fun!

BWM: There are tons of hot daddies and bears in Palm Springs – tell us about the live events our readers there will be able to attend.

SF: There are two terrific bars geared towards our bear/leather community in Palm Springs, The Barracks and The Tool Shed. We are securing the venue, but there is going to be a Bear Week Event that will have fantastic guests like Tom Goss, Sir Queen Jet, and Daniel Franzese.  It will be one of two fundraisers for our Pride Centers with meet and greets with our celebrities, a silent auction and a 50/50 Raffle. We are looking to set up a photo booth and there might just be a surprise acoustic performance or two. 

Our second fundraiser will be a comedy night on July 17th, headlined by gay Comedian and Bear Jason Stuart who will be joined by other great gay comics like Justin Martindale and Mikey Montemayor. Details to follow!

BWM: What sort of bear centric fun do you have planned when Jonny joins you in Vegas/ Palm Springs?

SF: We will definitely be having some fun and shenanigans! In Vegas, it will all kick off with a Sunday Drag Brunch (of course!) at The Queen on the strip.  Sunday night will be dinner at the amazing gay owned DW Bistro, then Chippendales at the Rio with our Host Randy Slovacek, followed up by a night at one of the gay bear bars, “Fun Hog Ranch.”  With a name like that, how can we NOT have fun?!  Monday we will be getting our sweet tooth on, as we will be visiting my friends who own the Showboy Bakery Shop, who have competed many times on the Food Network and provided cakes and more to all the best shows in Vegas and on Broadway, then we’ll be heading towards Olde Town Vegas (can I get Jonny on the Zip Line?) and we will finish up the night at the “Garage Bar” before heading out to Palm Springs on Tuesday morning.

BWM: It all sounds AMAZING Scott! We wish you the best of luck and hope you raise lots of money for both LGBTQ+ centers!

SF: Thank you!

Featured image credit: ADDICTIVE STOCK CREATIVES / Alamy Stock Photo


For more information head to https://www.leftofstr8podcasts.com/roadtrip

To contribute to the Indiegogo Campaign click HERE.

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