Share – / 6A Houston building connected to the Mexican-American Civil Rights movement has been designated as a National Treasure and will share part of a $450,000 grant in an effort to raise money for restore historic buildings damaged by last year’s Hurricane Harvey, the National Trust for Historic Preservation announced Tuesday, January 30.The LULAC Council 60 Clubhouse in Houston, along with an historic doctor’s office in Miami and a nature preserve in Puerto Rico, will share the grant. All of the sites were damaged by Harvey, Irma or Maria.The clubhouse served as a meeting place beginning in the 1950s for Mexican-American civil rights leaders who plotted out key school desegregation cases and efforts to fight discrimination. Legendary leaders such as attorneys Gus Garcia, John J. Herrera and Tex-Mex restaurateur Felix Tijerina attended meetings at the clubhouse.The building sits in a revitalized area outside of Houston’s downtown. For years, advocates have been trying to raise money to fix the roof and interior of the building, which was damaged by Harvey and previous storms. LULAC — the acronym for the League of United Latin American Citizens — is the nation’s oldest Hispanic civil rights organization.“The LULAC Clubhouse is not only an irreplaceable reminder that bold ideas often take shape in modest places, but also, that more needs to be done to learn from our nation’s collective civil rights contributions,” said Stephanie Meeks, the National Trust for Historic Preservation president and CEO.The clubhouse, which is located at 3004 Bagby Street –in Montrose– and was built in 1907, is the site where activists planned President John F. Kennedy’s visit with LULAC held the night before his assassination. The group also created the “Little School of the 400,” an idea that would later become the federal Head Start program.LULAC National President Roger Rocha said the designation would increase the group’s access to funds and help create a museum to preserve a part of Latino history.“There’s a lot of history in that building,” Rocha said. “We can’t lose it.”Ray Valdez, president of LULAC Council 60, said that the clubhouse has earned its place in history because “Council 60 was basically one of the three councils that put LULAC on the map.”“They were involved in almost every major lawsuit that involved education, civil rights, judicial rights. They were, they were the powerhouse and huge contributors to the Latino civil rights movement,” added Valdez.Barbara Pahl, senior vice president of Preservation Field Services for the Trust, detailed that, out of the $450,000 grant –which is funded by American Express–, the LULAC clubhouse will receive $140,000.Pahl underlined that the designation will help the Trust to bring forward “stories of under represented communities,” which is one of the goals of the institution.Valdez explained the money will be used for repairs to the exterior walls, as well as work on the foundation and the roof.As for the future of the clubhouse once the repairs are completed, Valdez commented LULAC officials “think that it’s very possible to use the upstairs for meeting spaces and office, and use the downstairs for some kind of commercial venture.”Valdez specified some of the options the organization is considering are to open a museum, while the property’s upper story could be used to hold meetings –the site hasn’t held any since 2013 because of damages caused by previous storms– and as office space.With a National Treasure designation, the LULAC clubhouse joins such sites as the Washington National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., the White Grass dude ranch in Wyoming, and Joe Frazier’s Gym in Pennsylvania.The $450,000 American Express grant for the three sites will help renovate the historic structures and prepare them to attract visitors, said Timothy McClimon, president of the American Express Foundation. In addition to the LULAC clubhouse, the historic Dr. James M. Jackson’s Office and Surgery in Miami, Florida, and various structures and landscapes within Paraíso Las Lunas — a nature preserve in Caguas, Puerto Rico — will receive grant money.Jackson’s office was built in 1905 by Miami’s first resident physician and the building exemplifies neo-classical architecture in South Florida. It was damaged by Hurricane Irma. The Dade Heritage Trust will also use grant funds for roofing and carpentry repair at the Wagner Homestead, a mid-19th century structure and the oldest known house in Miami-Dade County, Florida.The eye of Hurricane Maria passed directly over Las Lunas, damaging several buildings and uprooting many of the more than 51,000 trees previously planted there. The 19-acre Paraíso Las Lunas was the home and studio of renowned Mexican ceramic artist Toni Hambleton. The site is renowned for the variety of native Puerto Rican flora and fauna.
Black Women for Positive Change is scheduled to host its fifth annual week dedicated to non-violence. The week is slated to begin with D.C. Justice & Opportunity UnityRally and Harmony Jam on Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue in Southeast D.C. on Oct. 21.The event is being held to promote non-violence and harmony. Speakers include Stephanie EMyers, national co-chair, Black Women for Positive Change; Marcus Hughes, Next Generation Action Network; Rev. Tony Lee, Community of Hope AME Church; Tyrone Parker, Alliance of Concerned Men; Frank Muhammad, Brothers Huddle; Frank Malone, 100 Fathers; Ward 8 Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner Shareece Crawford and Kymone Freeman, an activist who runs We Act Radio in Ward 8. D.C. Council member Trayon White was also invited to the celebration.The event will also include performances by Wisdom Speak GO GO Band and other musical and spoken word artists from the D.C. area. From Oct. 15-23, 21 cities, including Chicago, Baltimore, London and more, are also scheduled to hold non-violence rallies.View live video from the rally on the AFRO’s Facebook page.
It was only a matter of time: Adult entertainment studio Naughty America released one of the industry’s very first XXX-rated augmented reality (AR) apps for Android phones this week, which promises to put life-sized 3D versions of adult entertainers in your living room.Or bedroom, for that matter, with Naughty America CEO Andreas Hronopoulos touting the app as a way for consumers to make their own adult videos at home. “It’s the future of making content,” he said in an interview with Variety. “People can make their own scenarios.”Naughty America AR, as the app is aptly being called, makes use of Google’s ARCore technology to scan a room, and then place digital objects atop of a camera-view of that room. It’s a technology that’s been used in the past to let users superimpose “Star Wars” characters, Pokemons, and full-blown games over their mobile device’s camera view. In the case of the Naughty America AR app, these characters are decidedly not safe for work. A free version of the app features female and male porn performers in their underwear. Paying users get to download completely nude characters. Each performer does a few moves, and some address the viewer directly with some choice dirty words.Each of these AR clips is just about three to four seconds long, which helped to keep the app and any additional downloads reasonably small. Hronopoulos said the company also planned to experiment with longer content if users requested it. “We didn’t really know what people want,” he said.Naughty America has long been a studio that has embraced cutting-edge technologies. The company was among the first to distribute VR porn, and more recently began to use artificial intelligence to offer custom-made Deepfake porn, which allows consumers to superimpose their own faces onto the bodies of porn stars.Hronopoulos argued that AR was the next big thing for both adult as well as mainstream entertainment. “For adults, it’s obviously pretty massive,” he said, adding that the same technology could also be used to let consumers take fully clothed selfies with digital holograms of mainstream Hollywood stars, and then share the results on social media. “It’s a whole new era,” he said.Google and Apple both have policies against distributing adult content on their app stores, which is why Naughty America is distributing its AR app directly via is website (link not safe for work). Hronopoulos said the company may eventually also produce content for AR headsets, or VR headsets that incorporate AR features. But for now, he argued that mobile AR was the place to be. “The Android operating system is the largest AR platform out there,” he said. Popular on Variety ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15
Go back to the e-newsletterA luxury landmark set in the heart of a historic precinct, InterContinental Singapore is deeply rooted in the arts and cultural districts of Bugis and Bras Basah. Positioned in proximity to established historical enclaves including Arab Street and Kampong Glam as well as the bustling Waterloo and Albert Streets, guests are connected to an established network of more than 20 historical sites, national monuments, art institutions and museums. Embracing this connection to the cultural enclaves that surround the hotel, a specially curated two-hour guided Heritage Trail will be made available for all hotel guests from January 2016.Aimed at providing an experiential stay whilst showcasing the cultural and heritage aspects of Singapore, the Guided Heritage Trail is also designed in conjunction with the launch of newly renovated guestrooms and public spaces at the hotel. Paying homage to the character of the vibrant locale, the exciting journey, launched in partnership with the Society of Tourist Guides, will take guests through areas of interest in the vicinity of the hotel.Key highlights along the route include:Waterloo StreetA two-way street that stretches from Rochor Road to Bras Basah Road, the street was first named Church Street, after Thomas Church, who was resident councillor during the year of its construction. It was later renamed in 1858, and converted into a pedestrian mall to ease the problem traffic along the street, where many renowned religious landmarks currently stand today. These landmarks include the Kwan Im Thong Hood Cho Temple, which features a hallmark of traditional Chinese temple courtyard ￼￼architecture, first built during the Japanese occupation and the Sri Krishnan Temple which was established in 1870. Both temples are known for their intricate façade architecture.Albert StreetForming the junction of several streets, Albert Street started off as an unnamed side road in the early days of Singapore, before it was later built up extensively and named after Prince Albert, the consort of Queen Victoria in 1858. Originally lined with low, two-storeyed shophouses up till April 1981, Albert Street used to be known for the variety of food served till the early hours of the morning, alongside the vibrant night life scene. Today, the street serves as a pedestrian mall peppered with a trail of bazaar stalls and is no longer open to traffic. Trishaws, a common mode of transportation in the past, is a common sight along Albert Street today.National Design CentreThe National Design Centre is centrally located in the arts and cultural district in the Bras Basah-Bugis area. Formerly occupied by the St. Anthony’s Convent and Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, the design centre was restored in 2011 and today comprises three pre-war Art Deco blocks and one post-war Modern block which have been gazetted for conservation by the Urban Redevelopment Authority. The National Design Centre is widely used as a venue for designers to hold their discussions and is at the same time an educational space that is open to the public.Church of Saints Peter and PaulThe Church of Saints Peter and Paul, established in 1869, was started by the Chinese Catholic Mission serving congregation for all Chinese dialect groups and Indian community. The church was gazetted a national monument on 10 February 2003 and was in 2006, one of the exhibition venues for the Singapore Biennale, Singapore’s first international biennale of contemporary art. Today, it is currently under the care of the Discalced Carmelite Friars.Go back to the e-newsletter