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BOLDFest 2019 Workshops & Presenters

 BOLDFest's interactive workshops are: stimulating, sometimes challenging, often funny and  welcomes all participants. Topics are as diverse as the presenters. We  learn, explore ideas, perhaps change our mind about a thing or two, share our personal stories. And, we laugh, cry, feel safe and comfortable to say what we need to say!   It's a lesbian thing!

BOLDFest reserves the right to make changes to schedule as needed. If there are any necessary changes, they will be noted on website and at registration desk. 

 Workshops (and much more) are included in your BOLDFest registration fee. See Registration form.  An individual events registration form will be available online mid summer.

Let's talk Decrim! Oral History on the 50th Anniversary of the Decriminalization of Homosexuality in Canada: An Intergenerational Approach

 with Shilpa Narayan

 To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the decriminalization of homosexuality in Canada this project created oral histories of those persons whose lives were affected (or not) by this policy change. Led by Dr. Jen Marchbank, Dr. Gloria Gutman and Shilpa Narayan from Simon Fraser University, this project takes a look at the relationship of decriminalisation to LGBTQ+ individual's social, cultural, health and mental health experiences. These oral histories have been written up and recorded as aural testimony and curated as an educational display exhibited in Surrey City Hall and Surrey Libraries. This workshop highlights the process of this very special intergenerational project which includes the method, the process, and the outcome. Combining academic research with grassroots LGBTQ+ activism, an open dialogue has been created and continues to be created about this important event in Canadian LGBTQ+ History.

 Shilpa Narayan is a 23 year old award-winning mental health and social justice activist as well as Gender/Sexuality/Women’s Studies student at SFU. Her work involves locally, provincially and internationally educating communities, creating workshops, and resources around the intersections between mental health education, intergenerational art activism and the LGBTQ+ community.

Shilpa is a Team BOLD volunteer member for the past 4 years and helps facilitate BOLDFest's Intergenerational discussions. We love our younger BOLDFestees!  They keep us hopping!

Retirement- the Good, the Bad and the Ugly

with Kathy Jones (right) & Millie Dietrich (left) 

Winnipeg, Manitoba

 Nothing creates more emotions in older lesbians than preparing for retirement. Some women look towards retirement with FEAR (do I have enough money? how will it affect my social life? what will I do with my day?), some, JOY (finally I can get to that project I have been wanting to do), others worry about their HEALTH (will there be enough resources when they need them). No matter what- it’s a huge change. 

This workshop will present results from a study undertaken in Manitoba on issues facing LGBT2SQ+ seniors as well as the development of a Seniors centre for LGBT2SQ+ Manitobans. Using that study the presenters share stories of their own experiences and lead a discussion with others on the fun and fears of retirement. 

Kathy Jones is a retired Social Worker and Instructor in the Faculty of Social Work at the University of Manitoba.  She spends her day renovating her turn of the century house, knitting, spinning and sitting on the Board at the Rainbow Resource Centre. 

Millie Dietricis a retired Nurse who spent most of her career working in Northern First Nations and Inuit communities. Her passions include watching Toronto Blue Jays and Winnipeg Jets games, cycling and going to the gym.   She is also an active member of the ‘Over the Rainbows’ group at the Rainbow Resource Centre. 


Historian Elise Chenier has been recording the life experiences of same-sex attracted women since the early 1990s. For the past decade she been putting oral testimonies online at . Elise is a Professor of History at Simon Fraser University. Her research interests concern aspects of sexuality, gender, and race from queer, feminist, and social justice perspectives. 

Elise Chenier is a popular public speaker who has addressed audiences across Canada, the US, Europe and the UK. She has provided expert commentary for the Canadian and American media on everything from same-sex marriage legislation, “pinkwashing,” the labia selfie, to Justin Trudeau’s 2015 electoral victory. Her passion for thinking critically about sexuality, race, and gender carries through to the classroom. 


Meet/listen to young adults who were inspired to write about their lives brought up by LGBTQ parents

Spawning Generations is a collection of stories by queerspawn (people with LGBTQ+ parents) spanning six decades, three continents, and five countries. Curated by queerspawn, this anthology is about carving out a space for queerspawn to tell their own stories. The contributors in this volume break away from the pressures to be perfect, the demands to be well adjusted, and the need to prove that they turned out “all right.” These are queerspawn stories, airbrushed for no one, and told on their own terms.


A BOLDFest Comedy Workshop with Claire Robson!

Getting old is not for the fainthearted, but it sure has its funny side, and this is what we’ll explore in this workshop. Standup comedy is all about noticing and naming those things that we  notice every day but often don’t talk about. Naming them out loud can be both killer funny and emotionally liberating. In this collaborative workshop, we’ll begin by talking together about the funny side of getting old, then turn our ideas into short standup routines. If you’ve never done standup before, this is your chance to try it out with supportive BOLD compañeras.  Be on the lookout for a selected group of comedians performing sometime over the weekend!

Claire Robson is expert in faking it till she makes it. The numerous roles she’s performed include academic presenter, researcher, author, performance poet, emcee, memoirist, percussionist, activist, assistant principal, workshop facilitator, teacher, dog handler, and standup comedian. So far, no one has called her bluff. 


Climate Change is happening rapidly and we have a short period of time to respond. This workshop will open with a short film or Power Point..followed by responses and a discussion focused on  what we can do as individuals, as local, state/provincial and national governments. The emphasis is on actions leading to hope. 

Bet has been an activist since coming out in 1979 and has been involved with many lesbian, gay and feminist groups. She was a co-founder of the Vancouver Lesbian Connection that opened and ran Canada’s only Lesbian centre. Since moving to the Sunshine Coast she has been on the Pride Dance Committee for many years, is on the steering committee of Alliance4Democracy and was the chair of Fair Vote Sunshine Coast. Her current focus, due to it’s extreme urgency and affect on us all,  is Climate Change. She also loves to dance and agrees with Emma Goldman.



 Remember the fun we had at lesbian karaoke in 2017?? Let's bring it back! Start practicing!!  Bring your play lists!


BOLDFest 2012- 2019 Bold, Old(er) Lesbians & Dykes
PO Box 21510, 1424 Commercial Drive
Vancouver, BC V5L 5G2 Canada
Tel: 604-253-7189 - Email 

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