Atlantis Alumni

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Cherry Grove: A Valuable Safe Haven For Gay Youth

Yesterday I saw two high school age boys on the beach here In Cherry Grove. They were lying together on a blanket fully clothed but enjoying each other, doing some necking. One of the boys had a bicycle, the other did not. It's easy to speculate on how this scene came about. Perhaps they met on Facebook or some other online venue, and arranged a rendezvous in Cherry Grove, where they would feel comfortable expressing their affection for each other in public. Maybe the one with the bicycle came to the Grove from one of the communities to the West. He could have pedalled down from Ocean Beach or even (gasp!) Point Of Woods. The other young man could have arrived by ferry from Long Island. It stuck me that the Grove is still serving as an important venue for gays and lesbians to meet and feel comfortable. Perhaps this is not as important as it once was for adult gays, but for young people the Grove is a place where they can meet and feel comfortable away from the disapproval of family and peers. Seeing these two young gays on the beach yesterday really made me appreciate the uniqueness of Cherry Grove, which is easy to take for granted if you have lived here for any length of time.


PHOTO: Youthful participants in Cherry Grove's Gay Pride Parade last weekend

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