Orlando has been named “Gay City of the Year” by the gay travel site GayCities.com, which praised the City Beautiful for its outpouring of compassion and unity following last summer’s horrific massacre at the Pulse nightclub and then noted Orlando had been a strong city for gays all along.
“GayCities honors the city & community of Orlando for its compassion and resiliency in the wake of the horrific Pulse Nightclub massacre of 2016,” the site declared in announcing the annual award. “We salute your bravery and spirit in the face of unspeakable cruelty & adversity, an example to us all.”
An earlier post on the site, since apparently removed, described Orlando as a place that has long been welcoming to the LGBT community, and noted the gay-tourism outreach provided by VisitOrlando, Orange County’s convention and visitors’ bureau. The bureau publishes a “Gay Travel Guide” among its specialized-market efforts.
The official announcement is set for Dec. 12.
VisitOrlando President George Aguel boasted about the “City of the Year” designation Friday when he met with the county’s Tourist Development Council, which includes both Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs and Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer.
“It is nice to get that news. It continues to favor the opportunity we see to expand our awareness that this is a place for what is a huge travel market,” Aguel said.