It was a magical evening for all at OUT's first-ever celebration of LGBT voices in the arts, Stories We Share: A Celebration of Arts, Culture and Community. For nearly 20 years OUT – a non-profit, youth advocacy organization dedicated to the support and empowerment of LGBTQ young people in midcoast Maine – has provided a safe space for youth to find their voices and to explore opportunities to become contributing members of their communities. This arts celebration was a special opportunity for LGBT youth and adults to share their stories and art with the community.  

2013 Presidential Inaugural Poet Richard Blanco, the first Latino and openly gay man to hold such an honor, was the star. He brought his powerful storytelling and poetic brilliance to midcoast Maine. He was joined by local LGBTQ poets -- Mercury Io and Alec Merrifield -- as well as youth and adult artists in this celebration of the experiences that bind our community together.

Along with an incredible poetry evening, we had a silent auction featuring works from local youth artists as well as our many talented neighbors. These included works from Jack McKenney, Fireside Pottery, Playing With Fire Glassworks, John Wood, Nancy Button, David Scriven Crowley and many more! All proceeds from the auction directly benefitted OUT -- thanks to our generous local supporters! 

Here's a video of Mr. Blanco reading the Inaugural Poem in 2013.