Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Gay Activist Jay Critchley 25th Swim For Life

Produced by Charlotte Robinson

UPDATE: Over $200,000 was Raised! Thanks Everyone :)

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with activist and artist Jay Critchley about the 25th Silver Anniversary of the Provincetown Harbor Swim for Life and Paddler Flotilla that happens Saturday September 8th. Since 1987 thousands of swimmers, kayakers, volunteers and the public have been participating in this fabulous Provincetown fundraising tradition presented by the Provincetown Community Compact. Swimmers across the country will swim the 1.4 mile across Provincetown Harbor to benefit the following community organizations and projects: Helping Our Women, AIDS Support Group of Cape Cod, Outer Cape Health Services, Provincetown Rescue Squad, Lower Cape Ambulance, Academy at Provincetown Schools, Soup Kitchen of Provincetown and The Compact Community Fund. Last year swimmers raised $200,000. We talked to Jay about the event and issues facing our LGBT community.

When asked what his personal commitment is to LGBT civil rights, Critchley stated, We’ll I’m an artist who’s always been very out and I’m also a father with a son and two grandchildren. That has been an experience. I’m very open and out as an artist. One of my major projects was “The Old Glory Condom Corporation” which was a patriotic condom company in the eighties and nineties, which made it patriotic to practice safer sex. I wanted to get a trademark for it and the government denied it so I had a three-year legal battle with them. They said it was immoral and scandalous to associate the flag with sex but eventually we won. I did get a trademark. The slogan of the company was “Worn With Pride Countrywide.” Basically the American flag was printed on the condom. I created the first AIDS healing performance on the beach here in Provincetown in 1983 called “Immunity Mandela”. So a lot of my work has been intertwined with civil rights for people with AIDS, for the LGBT community and the community. I bring people together. It’s all about different facets of the community coming together which is what Provincetown is all about.”

The Provincetown Harbor Swim for Life and Paddler Flotilla weekend events include the Celebration of Life free concert on Friday September 7th at the UU Meeting House. On Saturday is the Swim for Life & Paddler Flotilla followed by the Mermaid Brunch and awards ceremony at the Boatslip Resort.
For more Info: swim4life.org

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