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KINDRED SPIRITS

In 1981, Marion E. Coleman, a local civic leader and business owner, opened a women's bar she called Kindred Spirits. Unlike other women's bars of the day, Kindred Spirits offered patrons a bright, clean, and safe environment in which they could gather and party with their friends. The club was a favorite watering hole for lesbians throughout the Houston and southeast Texas area, but Kindred Spirits was much more than a bar. For many women, it became a focal point in their lives.

Through Kindred Spirits, women found acceptance, enjoyed quality entertainment, met friends and lovers, played softball, participated in the Gay Pride Parade, and got involved in community events. Kindred Spirits helped
to nurture women who would go on to become leaders in their fields and in
our community.

For several years after the bar's closure in 1989, former patrons repeatedly requested that Marion open another bar, or at least hold a reunion. After much consideration, the Kindred Spirits Reunion was held in 2002, and proceeds were donated to local not-for-profit agencies serving women. The success of that event, and subsequent annual dances, gave birth to the idea of forming a charitable organization to help women in our community.

In 2009, with an official 501(c)(3) designation, Kindred Spirits Foundation, Inc., (KSF) was established to continue the legacy of Kindred Spirits and to uphold its tradition of service to the community. Over the last decade, the Kindred Spirits Reunion and the Kindred Spirits Foundation have donated approximately $150,000 to local charities that provide health and human services to women, and indeed these efforts are dedicated to enhancing women's lives.

Footnote: Marion Coleman was elected Female Grand Marshal for the Pride Parade in 1982.


          

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