Rose’s View

Panzi, Crayton Robey and Bob Levine at the ribbon-cutting ceremony for Trailblazers Park.

It was a thrill to perform at the Community House on July 2 in “Broadway Hit Parade.’’ I’ve worked with many professionals through the years, but this group was super exceptional. Luis Villabon staged, choreographed, performed and supervised the entire show. Skie Ocasio and Tim Burke were the most attentive and most professional “boys” to work with. Musical Director Matthew Stephens was perfectly wonderful. A shout out to my personal dresser Charlie Catanese, to my makeup and hair stylist Richard “Urban Sprawl” Cooley and to Martha Pitkin, Ellen Biggers and Chris Caswell who stage managed and ran a flawless show. To Matt Baney, Alison, Michael Romanelli, Arthur Cohen, Sharon, Anita, and JoAnn on lights, sound, technics, ticket sales – what a group!

On July 4 FIPPOA President Henry Robin welcomed all to the Invasion. Pixie revved up the crowd with excitement. The parade of glamorines stepping off the boat was kept at a speed that only Panzi can achieve. Queen JizzaBella’s entourage paid tribute to her Italian heritage, and she looked smashing! Thanks to Raf Kuhn and Jon Tilley for introducing Deutche Bank to FIPPOA, who sponsored the Invasion.

The big news of my column however is that FIPPOA opened Trailblazers Park at the Pines Harbor, designed by Scott Bromley. For the past two years Matt Teague, Doug Harris, Crayton Robey, Gary Clinton, Joe Conforti, and Omar Gonzalas-Pagan worked diligently on creating this new landmark in the Pines. Cutting the ribbon were the Trailblazers honorees including Panzi and Rose Levine for being among the first members on Invasion 1976; Jim Dale, a boy scout whose landmark case went to the Supreme Court in 1993; as well as trans activists Iman Le Clair and Kween Jean.

Charlie Balmer built the platform and arch where a beautiful mosaic tile water fountain has been installed, designed by TM Daly and named in honor of Stonewall activists Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera.

This park pays tribute to the diverse legacies of LGBTQ heroes who dedicated their lives fighting for the cause of equality and representation. After the ceremony everyone was invited to the home of Henry Robin and Bob McGarity for a beautiful luncheon.

Then the Fire Island Dance Festival returned to the Pines with 10 exquisite dance pieces. Highlights included the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s “Ella,” a tribute to Jazz Legend Ella Fitzgerald, and the Verdon Fosse Legacy presented “Sweet Gwen Suite.” ABT principal dancer James Whiteside was the MC. They were welcomed by a wildly enthusiastic audience.

The fantastic team of Guy Smith, Robert Montenego, John Wood, Randy Wilson, Allan Baum, Jeff Stadt, and Nick Ammaturo are responsible for Pines Party MMXXll Bacchanalia, July 22-24. For a full schedule of activities, visit

Don’t forget Bingo on Sundays in the Grove at Community House at 7 p.m. and Thusrdays in the Pines Fire House also at 7 p.m.