Pink PointPink Point / Homomonument Foundation / Roze Wester Festival / Drag Queen OlympicsThe Homomonument attracts international visitors the whole year through. For many people all over the world the mere idea of a gay monument is quite incredible. GALA thought it appropriate to create a host at this extraordinary location. A place to drop in, have a chat and a cup of coffee, a place to find out what’s going on in the city.
Starting as a gay information stall in a converted ice -cream cart during Gay Games Amsterdam in 1998, Pink Point now has a custom designed kiosk and has grown to be a permanent fixture in Amsterdam providing free gay and lesbian info, maps and newspapers to countless visitors.
Pink Point took initiative to improve the signage to the Homomonument because the structure is easily overlooked. The designer wanted the monument to blend in with its surroundings, something it does very well; that’s also why it can subtly take up a good wack of public space in the centre of town. The downside is that a lot of people can’t find the thing, even when they’re actively looking for it.
Pink Point initiated the Schorer book “Dancing on the Homomonument” by Thijs Bartels in 2003, which records fifteen years of celebrations and demonstrations at the monument.
Pink Point published flyers that explain the design and meaning of the monument in 11 languages, including Chinese, Japanese, Arabic and Russian.
More information: www.pinkpoint.org
LadzLadz / Furball / XXXLeather / House of HopelezzA group of boys within GALA shared a common interest: sportswear. They thought it was strange that this was so popular on internet while in the actual gay nightlife there was nothing; no parties, no other gatherings. It was clearly time to create something the Amsterdam nightlife didn’t have yet: sportswear parties.
The Ladz created a slick site and produced 1st class promotion material from day one so it comes as no surprise the immensely popular bi-monthly parties held in Church are always a great success. It’s all about showing off and sizing up, sometimes exchanging or sharing gear.
More information: www.ladz.nl
HistoryGALA (Gay & Lesbian Amsterdam) is a non-profit volunteer organization.
Gala was founded in January 1992 to promote the visibility and accessibility of the gay community in Amsterdam, by organizing parties, events and other projects, both in indoor locations as well as outside on the street.
Pink PointIn 1998 GALA instigated Pink Point, the gay & lesbian information & souvenir kiosk on the Westermarkt, right next to the Homomonument.
When Amsterdam reintroduced Queen’s Day Eve in 2004 GALA created the hilarious Drag Queen Olympics: the world’s premier sporting event for drag queens and drag kings, it established the home of Jennifer Hopelezz and her outrageous ‘House of Hopelezz’. In 2007 GALA took the initiative to (re-) establish the Homomonument Foundation to initiate and coordinate the various activities at this unique site in the heart of Amsterdam.
Club ChurchMore recently, in 2008, GALA started up the famous Club Church in the Kerkstraat in Amsterdam.
In 2011 and 2012 Club Church won the ‘Best Fetish Club’ as well as ‘Best Gay Club’ awards in gay.nl’s prestious election!
GALA is an umbrella organization for various groups, like ‘Ladz’ sportswear boys, ‘Furball’ hairy men, as well as ‘XXXLeather’ kinky party guys.
Behind GALAGala only exists because of our fantastic volunteers. At the moment there are more than 80 volunteers involved! This team of volunteers are led by:
Homomonument FoundationPink Point / Homomonument Foundation / Roze Wester Festival / Drag Queen OlympicsAfter producing numerous festivals and other events at the site for over a decade the board of GALA created the Homomonument Foundation in 2007 to celebrate the 20-year anniversary of the world’s first gay monument.
From then on the Homomonument Foundation took over GALA’s responsibilities and now initiates, organizes and coordinates all the events taking place on the square. A few regular dates on the Homomonument’s calendar remain.
More information: Donate!
FurballLadz / Furball / XXXLeather / House of HopelezzFurball started as an anti-statement against the smooth and chiseled look that tends to dominate the scene. These guys prefer it furry and a tummy’s something to show off.
They always have excellent djs and a relaxed atmosphere is their trademark. After great successes in several venues in town Furball has now well and truly settled in Club Church.
More information: www.furball.nl
HomomonumentPink Point / Homomonument Foundation / Roze Wester Festival / Drag Queen OlympicsThe Homomonument in Amsterdam was designed and created in 1987 as a memorial to those oppressed and persecuted due to their homosexuality, not only during the Second World War but also before and after, not only in The Netherlands but also in other parts of the world.
The monument is a meeting place in the very center of Amsterdam for people of all sexualities and genders from all over the planet, to party and celebrate, as well as demonstrate and commemorate.
It serves as a beacon of hope for those that still suffer discrimination at home or in their working environment and is an inspiration for future generations.
More information: www.homomonument.nl
Roze Wester FestivalPink Point / Homomonument Foundation / Roze Wester Festival / Drag Queen OlympicsA four day event starting on Queen’s Day Eve, the 29th of April continues on the 30th for a celebration of Queen’s Day. Then, after a few days pause the monument is taken up in the national Memorial Day on the 4th of May with a specific ceremony at the site. Finally, on the 5th of May Liberation Day is celebrated with a spectacular outdoor party.
The annual Amsterdam gay pride always takes place in the first weekend of August and the Homomonument joins in with the festivities for three days: there’s the official Pride opening ceremony, there are dance parties, with acts and performances and a children’s festival on Sunday afternoon.
More information: www.rozewester.nl
XXXLeatherLadz / Furball / XXXLeather / House of HopelezzThe XXXLeather group started off with a legendary series of large-scale leather & rubber parties in several locations in Amsterdam.
As all suitable venues in Amsterdam have disappeared – the boys preferred industrial rough locations, which got gentrified or pulled down one by one – they’ve adopted Club Church as their home base.
More information: www.xxxleather.nl
Club ChurchLadz / Furball / XXXLeather / House of HopelezzIn 1995 GALA was the first group in Amsterdam to reintroduce large-scale fetish parties. Boys and men from all over Europe flocked to an industrial hall in Amsterdam for the notorious Factory Parties.
When other groups tapped in and started to crowd the market for large-scale kinky parties GALA switched to regular steaming parties in bars on the Warmoesstraat.
In 1997 S.O.S was born- Sex On Sunday. Starting in Argos Bar and then Eagle, S.O.S is one of the longest running sex parties in Amsterdam. Twice a month more than 100 men come to S.O.S to ‘let off steam’ either shirtless or naked. With a loyal group of volunteers and customers, S.O.S has become a real fixture in gay Amsterdam.
In 2008, after years of organizing fetish and dance parties in various locations around town, GALA opened Club Church on 52 Kerkstraat in Amsterdam. It became the home to all kinds of different groups and fetishes; Church has more than 20 unique party concepts, including S.O.S, catering to groups as diverse as sportswear guys, leather & kinky men to drag queens, twinks and transmen.
The themes and the friendly service made well-equipped fetish club Church the most original new venue seen in Amsterdam for a long time, so in 2011 and 2012 Club Church was awarded Best Gay Fetish Club & Best Gay Club in Holland by the influential gay.nl website.
More information: www.clubchurch.nl
Drag Queen OlympicsPink Point / Homomonument Foundation / Roze Wester Festival / Drag Queen OlympicsAs a tight group of friends GALA volunteers started dragging up for special occasions in the city.
For a while Hartjesdag in August in the Red Light District was favorite but then the city of Amsterdam reintroduced Queen’s Day Eve in 2004…
GALA and the seriously sporty drag queen Jennifer Hopelezz developed the Drag Queen Olympics especially for this occasion and this location. Very quickly it became the largest sporting event for drag queens and kings worldwide.
The Games draw thousands of spectators who cheer on more than 25 international competitors as they battle it out for Olympic Gold in categories such as the Handbag Toss and Stiletto Sprint.
More information: www.dragqueenolympics.nl
House of HopelezzLadz / Furball / XXXLeather / House of HopelezzJennifer Hopelezz made her first appearances at the Homomonument and Hartjesdag festivities. This ‘working mom and sports fanatic’ found that the combination of sports and drag created enormous popular interest; the Drag Queens Olympics were a great occasion to draw in all kinds of drag artists and the audience and press just couldn’t get enough of it.
Being a social activist as well she launched a campaign in 2010 that nearly won her the honorary title of Night Mayor of the city of Amsterdam. In spite of overwhelming public support a so-called jury favored another candidate in a highly criticized decision, but to many in the nightlife community Jenny is the real Night Mayor.
Jennifer hopelezz is one of the main icons involved in Club Church. Every Thursday she hosts the incredibly successfull club night Blue, together with her rapidly growing Family: the House of Hopelezz. There are of course the twin girls Tina & Gina Hopelezz with their nanny from the Philipines Gimme (Nanny) Moore. There’s daughter Cornelia and Bunny Hopelezz, the puppies Skitters & Scatters and the pony Horsey Hopelezz. There are Jenny’s sisters Penelope and Eva Vraeghe Necklace – Hopelezz, there’s the neighbor Viola, a stray cat, a vet and God knows what else…
Once every two months the whole family works itself into a frenzy for the legendary Hoerenbal (Hooker’s Ball) on Saturday night.
More information: www.jenniferhopelezz.com
Sauna NieuwezijdsFinally a new stylish and cruisy sauna in the centre of Amsterdam.
Open 365 days per year Nieuwezijds offers a fully licensed bar with lounge, jacuzzi, Turkish bath, Finnish sauna, private cabins, smoker’s lounge and ample relaxing and cruising space.
Coming from the team that created the fabulous Club Church in Amsterdam, famous for its friendly service and attention to detail.
More information: www.saunanieuwezijds.nl
Gala AmsterdamGALA (Gay & Lesbian Amsterdam) is a non-profit volunteer organization and was founded in January 1992.
GALA promotes the visibility and accessibility of the gay community in Amsterdam. Gala does that by organizing
parties, events and other projects; both in indoor locations as well as outside on the street.
At the moment there are more than 80 volunteers involved! - read more