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Nancy Hiimsel and Jocelyn Kaplan, Gay Women of Rehoboth

Nancy Himsel (left) and Jocelyn Kaplan (right) - Photo by Idalie Adams

Where The Women Are

Gay Women of Rehoboth Meetup, Tagg Rehoboth

The Rehoboth Beach area is becoming a haven for the lesbian community. Retirees and vacationers are flocking to the area for many reasons.

In a region decorated by state parks, the bay, the beach and ocean, residents also enjoy extremely low property taxes, no sales tax and a lesbian Meetup group that is exploding in membership. Membership in the Gay Women of Rehoboth group keeps everyone up-to-date on relevant information about happenings for women.

Most of the group’s listings are announcements for events that are hosted by other groups, but this meetup group sponsors about six dances yearly that bring huge crowds and features talented entertainers like DJ Nan. The participation of entertainers—like DJ Nan—are a big asset to the local lesbian community and help in the success of these gatherings. However, the main function of this group is to share information about lesbian events in the area. Group coordinator Jocelyn Kaplan compared the process to an extension of the old school phone tree method; only everyone can stay in the loop just by joining the group online.

From coffee to cabarets, from seminars to spa days, the Gay Women of Rehoboth know where the women are meeting. Simply join the group in order to get the latest updates, set alerts and post your own events and comments. Visitors can plan their trip around social happenings and locals can extend their social circle. Women return to vacation here year after year and the lesbian retirement community is growing daily. In Rehoboth women are finding an active beach community, an amazing get-away and an affordable place to live. “It has so much more to offer than P Town,” said group coordinator Nancy Himsel.

Nancy Hiimsel and Jocelyn Kaplan, Gay Women of Rehoboth

Gay Women of Rehoboth Meetup founders, Nancy Himsel (left) and Jocelyn Kaplan (right) – Photo by Idalie Adams

This meetup group is rapidly expanding and it is having a positive impact on the community. They have posted 907 meetups since launching in March 2010, the reviews read, “Gay Women of Rehoboth Meetup is a real gift to this community. Thanks so much to Nancy and the other group organizers for creating so many opportunities for us, and in bringing us all together so beautifully in friendship and community. It’s a fantastic group!”

Members love the variety of activities and the group has responded to requests for more singles functions. Attendees can come to many events early and participate in the singles happy hour that precedes the general happy hour. Other activities include country western dances, brunches, potlucks, parties, theater, galleries, performances and festivals.

In this group, women meet to share knowledge, build friendships, and make an impact on the community. The group leaders invite women to engage on the meetup site and suggest events. Local restaurants are also starting to cater to the growing lesbian population, finding that many singers and DJs in the lesbian community draw a good crowd. One of area favorites for women is the The Pond, featuring food, drinks, live music, darts, bars pool and trivia. The town’s boardwalk boasts around 75 gay-friendly eateries and many gay-owned. Here you will find an active nightlife, a strong arts community and beautiful beaches.

Don’t forget that Delaware has no sales tax, making shopping another popular attraction. The main drag of Rehoboth Avenue is hopping with shops and galleries and a block over Baltimore Avenue hosts a gay shopping scene with boutiques and an LGBTQ bookstore. There are also many outlet malls on Route 1.

The group just scheduled their first wine cruise on September 30, which has already sold out. Guests are able to bring drinks and food as they stroll along the water among a beautiful setting.

“It is a huge opportunity for women to come together,” said Kaplan. Other upcoming events listed on the meetup include a Mother’s Day brunch, VegFest and a meetup dance, but there are daily and weekly meetups for every occasion.

Rehoboth offers ideal accessibility, affordability and acceptance. With the help of conscience efforts like CAMP Rehoboth, the LGBTQ population does not feel the segregation or separation that exists in most cities.

The town began to develop a gay following in the 1950s, often offering a safe and secluded haven for closeted folks in D.C. Located just three hours from Washington, Baltimore and Philadelphia, Rehoboth Beach is beautiful stretch of sand along the Delaware shore. You might find the lesbians sunbathing on the beach at Cape Henlopen State Park. The Delaware Pride Festival is also held here and at Gordon’s Pond State Park each September.

This is the best source for connecting with women in Rehoboth Beach, averaging about eighty attendees per event. Whether you are on vacation or moving, explore the beauty of Rehoboth Beach with your new group of friends, 863 to be exact. “It’s a wonderful place to be and a wonderful place to retire,” said Himsel.

Follow the meetup website to get updated information on lesbian life in Rehoboth or visit the group’s Facebook page. Those interested in sponsorship can advertise their business on the meetup page for only $25 per month.