After 2 long years due to Covid-19, the 12th annual ‘Keystone Conference’ took place during the 4th week of March. Glamour Boutique makeup artist Genna attended with Mindy riding shotgun to help out as and when needed. They arrived late on Wednesday night and stayed until very late on Saturday evening. Both ladies had the best time and arrived back home exhausted but full of stories and full of joy for having had the experience.
First and foremost, the Keystone Conference is a celebration of gender diversity and many felt the joy this year was particularly in evidence after the 2 year lay-off. There is no doubt that many of us suffered through lack of contact with similar people in our daily lives during Covid. The chance to once again meet new and old friends in a safe and supportive environment for 4 days was quite simply an elixir to the happenings of the crazy world we are living in.
Keystone is chock full of insightful workshops and discussions and leisure activities. If you wanted to take part in a presentation on ‘The Biology of Sex and Gender’, come on in. Need to know the ins and outs of ‘Legally Changing your Name’, walk this way. How about ‘Body and Brain Yoga’ or one of the multitude of Makeup presentations to help you up your game. No problem, we’ve got you covered. Then there’s the evening’s musical entertainment and dancing where you can really let your hair down.
Genna kicked off early Thursday morning with a workshop presentation on ‘Flawless Foundation’ which was extremely well attended. Using a model in real time Genna explained all the skin-prep steps to take and included the application process to help make your foundation stay in place all day. Attendees asked great questions and Genna hopes to return to do it all again next year. Genna then spent the rest of the conference until 8pm on Saturday ‘painting faces’ to make her clients look their very best.
Genna and Mindy really enjoyed meeting up with old friends from Glamour Boutique and from the last Keystone. Mindy enjoyed catching up with Michelle Blond, friend of GB’s who did an awesome Workshop on ‘Personal Safety and Defense En Femme’. If you didn’t catch it this year make sure to attend next year.
Mindy also attended an open group discussion with one of her new ‘besties’ Lisa Smith leading the group. The subject: ‘I’m not Sure I want to Transition: Could I Identify as Dual Gender?’. With an outline given by Lisa to help attendees question where they belong and which may be the right path. The floor was then opened up to everyone to share their own experiences. Mindy found it enlightening especially with regards to how open each person was about their own journey.
It was noted this year that there seemed to be many first-time attendees which is a good sign. If you are thinking of attending next year, don’t be nervous if you think you don’t know anyone. Keystone thinks of every way to support you during your stay and their Helping Hand programme is renowned for making you feel like one of the girls from the moment you arrive. Run by volunteers who are there to answer any questions and help take away fears you might have. Whilst they are not companions or ‘minders’ they are friendly faces on hand to answer any questions or concerns you may have during your stay.
Genna worked right up until 8pm on the night of the Gala, Saturday. Both she and Mindy were asking everyone they met about their favorite part of Keystone. Of the ladies they spoke to 9/10 mentioned meeting old and new friends was their #1 favorite.
If you are on the east coast we recommend you place ‘Keystone’ on your bucket list. Once you have been, you will never be the same again. It’s like all your femme dreams come true in 4 days. Make the time and you will make lasting friendships with like-minded sisters that will stay with you a lifetime.
If you can’t wait until Keystone comes around again and need a shopping or makeup appointment with Genna at Glamour Boutique in NJ then reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
See you next year.