Pattie Gonia poses with a pride flag
What makes a queer person choose to live in an outdoorsy hot spot instead of an urban gayborhood? (Photo: Dayna Turnblom)
Adventures in Audio

Forces of Good: So a Drag Queen Walks into a Mountain Town…

Pattie Gonia poses with a pride flag

What makes a queer person choose to live in an outdoorsy hot spot instead of an urban gayborhood? A spirited grassroots organization working to make its town a haven for LGBTQ+ nature lovers. Photographer Wyn Wiley, who moonlights as drag queen Pattie Gonia, was living in Nebraska and dreaming of making a move. The most obvious choice was a big city, where queer people often go find their community. But then a group called Out Central Oregon invited Wiley to Bend to host an event on Mount Bachelor called Winter Pride Fest. What they found in Bend was much more than a seasonal party: here was a place with a highly visible queer community. This, Wiley decided, is the place for me and my go-go boots.


This episode is brought to you by Hydro Flask, a company that believes every adventure starts with two simple words: let’s go! Shop Hydro Flask products for yourself or the outdoor lovers on your holiday list this season at hydroflask.com.

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Outside’s longstanding literary storytelling tradition comes to life in audio with features that will both entertain and inform listeners. We launched in March 2016 with our first series, Science of Survival, which was developed in partnership with PRX, distributors of the idolized This American Life and The Moth Radio Hour, among others. We have since expanded our show and now offer a range of story formats, including interviews with the biggest figures in sports, adventure, and politics, as well as reports from our correspondents in the field.