RAINBOW FAMILY & FRIENDS

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What is the history of the Rainbow Club in The  Villages?

“What is the history of the Rainbow Family & Friends Club in The Villages (TVs)?”

 

     **  The RFFC was formed as an officially sanctioned “Resident Lifestyle” group in

          August 2007 by a collection of interested LGBTQ+ residents.

     **  We have sponsored a variety of social events, community service events, and

          fund raisers for local charities.

     **  We have held a series of educational meetings on topics of interest to our

          community.

     **  We have sponsored a variety of LGBTQ+ entertainers here in The Villages.

     **  We hold weekly social gatherings Thursdays at Bonifay Country Club from 5:00    

          to 8:00 p.m.  All are welcome with NO Villages I.D. required.

 

“Is there a particular area that the LGBTQ+ tend to reside?”

 

The Villages is a very large and ever-expanding community.  We find Family members in every neighborhood from the “Historic” side to the newest developments in the far south areas.

 

“Isn’t Central Florida a highly conservative political stronghold?”

 

Yes, Central Florida has historically been viewed as politically Conservative.  Generally speaking, people often tend towards the “right”, but as TVs has grown to +140,000 residents drawing people from urban as well as rural areas, both Democrats & Republicans have come to be well represented.

 

“How about ‘homophobia’ in TVs?”

 

We certainly can see examples of prejudice just like every other city in the United States.  But mostly what we see is the positive progress of the LGBTQ+ Movement over the past 40+ years.  People are more educated about issues relating to sexual orientation & identity than in years past & are more willing to accept that not all families look alike.  One thing that we can certainly say is that in working with TVs over the past 15+ years we have been nothing but welcomed & helped with all of our events, meetings, & gatherings.

 

“I’m not a resident but can I still participate?”

 

This is a tricky - and often - sensitive issue.  As an officially recognized Resident Lifestyle Group (a club) we must abide by certain rules and regulations as outlined by The Villages Recreation Department.  The guidelines set very specific limits for “nonresident” attendance.  In essence for any Club meeting or event in which we have been granted a room at “no charge”, either a Resident ID or a valid Visitor’s I.D. is required.  If the room has been rented from the Recreation Department an I.D. is not required.  Gatherings at businesses such as Country Clubs & independent restaurants, movie theaters, Town Square entertainment, bowling alleys & many others are open to the public.

 

“How do I know if I can attend an event?”

 

This information is included in our advertising of events for the RFFC & those sponsored by private individuals.  Please read these ads carefully to note if a Villages Resident/Guest I.D. is required.

 

“How do I join the Club?”

 

It’s easy for anyone who is a Villages resident — simply come to our meetings, parties, or events.  If you choose to participate in Rainbow Family & Friends activities or signup for our e-mail weekly notices, then you are an “official” part of our community.  For non-residents, you can still sign up for our notices which will tell you about upcoming events.

 

“Are there dues or membership lists?”

 

There are no dues and no formal membership lists.  We are respectful & cautious about personal information so do not share, sell, or otherwise make our mailing list available to outside sources.

 

“How does the Club communicate?”

 

We have this website which provides an on-going calendar of activities and other information.  Posters will outline upcoming events with ticket information included.  Family owned/friendly businesses & services are also outlined, and ads are available at very reasonable annual fees.

 

In addition, we are on Facebook at:  https://www.facebook.com/rainbowfamilyvillagesfl

Finally, we publish a weekly newsletter to keep people informed.

 

“How is the money raised through events, advertising, etc. spent?”

 

The RFFC does not exist to make a profit.  We operate on a volunteer basis & none of the Board members, website managers, Club event producers, etc. receives pay for the work they do.  Ticket proceeds cover basic costs and entertainer fees with any remaining monies donated to local charities. 

 

About our Club:

 

Club membership is open to all Villages residents, and those in the surrounding areas who identify as LGBTQ+ or are friends of the LGBTQ+ community.  Our purpose is to provide LGBTQ+ communication & social event information as well as create visibility, acceptance, and understanding through community participation & charitable events.  We welcome your suggestions & input.

 

About our Website purpose:

 

Our website is designed to communicate directly to the LGBTQ+ community in the tri-county area of Marion, Lake, and Sumter Counties.  Events, information, & resources of local interest are featured here.

 

Business & Services Advertisements:

 

Post your single sided business card on our website for only $25 a year by contacting us. Other options available.

 

Charity Support:

 

Our Club supports a number of charities through the “Power of Love” campaign.

If you would like to have our Club support your charity please contact us via this website.

 

Community Events of Interest:

 

We will regularly post events of interest to our community from various organizations in and around The Villages.  For events at which tickets are sold we ask that you follow our advertising guideline & pay our nominal $25 fee.  Activities that are free to the public may be included at no charge at our discretion.

 

Discrimination Policies:

 

“It is the policy of the Villages Community Development Districts that no group holding Resident Lifestyle membership in or enjoying privileges of the Resident Lifestyle Groups shall discriminate against any person on the basis of age, race, nationality, handicap, physical disability, color creed, religious preference, gender or sexual orientation.”

Email Frequency:

 

We limit our email communications to once weekly with few exceptions.  We encourage you to bookmark and refer to our website regularly.  Please use the “Contact Us” page if you would like to be included in our mailings.

 

Email use:

 

We respect your privacy.  We do not publish, sell, or otherwise distribute your private information.  No membership lists are kept.

 

Event Tickets:

 

Please do not use the “Contact Us” link to request event tickets.  Read the ads carefully & contact the person/s mentioned in the ad directly via post, phone, or e-mail.  Event tickets sell out quickly so order your tickets early.

 

Feedback:

 

We sincerely welcome your feedback.  Please use the “Contact Us” link to send your comments, questions, and concerns.  We will reply to all feedback submitted.

 

Sports Events:

 

Events held at The Villages sports facilities are open to members and guest with a Villages Resident I.D. or Guest Pass.  Sports events held outside The Villages or in public venues are open to all.

 

Website Submissions:

 

We reserve the right to refuse or edit any requests made for website publication.