Orlando’s LGBT community center brings in new blood and broader attitudes to prepare for a presence beyond the ‘gay’ label
By Billy Manes
PUBLISHED: OCTOBER 3, 2012
Just after midnight on Sept. 26, Randy Stephens, executive director of the Center, received an unexpected phone call from the Orlando Police Department. Three young men – aged 21 through 22, two of them University of Central Florida students – wandered out from a night of hopped-up bacchanalia at nearby Will’s Pub, only to climb just past the odd art installation of two mannequin legs atop the LGBT community center’s Mills Avenue location and onto its roof. The cops asked Stephens if he wanted to press charges – after all, the Center was vandalized with “Die fags” and “Go to hell” graffiti in 2009. Instead, Stephens decided to throw on some clothes and go down to assess the situation.