picLogo by Marilyn Kellough

Courage Roundup

Courage Roundup was an annual gathering of LGBT alcoholics and those affected by the alcoholism of others, that is, an LGBT Alcoholics Anonymous and Al-Anon. The gathering was hosted by the Halifax LGBT AA group, LiveAndLetLive.


TumaYoung has contributed a big bunch of photos from this Roundup, here


July 22-24 in St Peter's Hall, Sullivan St, Dartmouth. Mentioned in KathleenHowell's segment of the 1994 All Day All Gay, "Call Michael."


August 10, 2018 to 12th

Official website:


In March, 2022 the team that organized the event, decided not to.

Previous Programs

About Courage Round Up

The Courage Round Up is a weekend get-together for alcoholics and those affected by the alcoholism of others. The weekend includes fellowship, speaker meetings and workshop discussions of recovery topics in a relaxed and peaceful setting and takes place at the UniversalistUnitarianChurch. Courage is a small, intimate round up and always has been. It is the only gay and lesbian AA round up in Atlantic Canada, the only one of its kind east of Montreal.

The Courage Roundup is intended for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people who are in a 12-step program of recovery from alcoholism or the effect of the alcoholism of others; however it is open to others not in the GLBT community.

We do not ask people about their sexual orientation, but most of the people who attend the Courage Roundup seem to be gay men or lesbians and members of Alcoholics Anonymous or Al-Anon.. We have an interesting mixture of people from all over. They come from the Maritimes, other parts of Canada and from all over the U.S. People attending Courage have included visitors from British Columbia, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, California, Florida, Massachusetts, Maine, New York City and many other places. The diversity of people who come seems to promote the strong spiritual experience many people find in the weekend.

The Courage Roundup program includes speaker meetings (where one member shares his/her experience, strength and hope by telling what it was his life was like, what happened and what it's like now), small discussion group meetings where everyone shares on a variety of topics (such as the AA recovery steps, gratitude, spirituality, sponsorship, resentments, anger, fear, prayer and many other topics associated with recovery from alcoholism), fellowship (where people get to know each other and share in small groups or on a one-to-one basis), an informal supper on Saturday evening, and a spirituality meeting on Sunday afternoon.

A roundup is very much like an AA meeting but it is larger, longer in duration, more spiritual and probably more intense. Gay and lesbian AA roundups have been held all over North America for 25 years or so. Courage is the only one in Canada east of Montreal. There are also hundreds of mainstream AA/Al-Anon roundups in Canada but the gay/lesbian roundups work better for members of the GLBT community because we have more in common than others do and can share our experience, strength and hope more openly without fear of misunderstandings and homophobia.

Organization and mounting of the Courage Roundup over the years has been an amazing feat. There are probably many gay men and lesbians in mainstream AA and Al-Anon in Nova Scotia but this roundup is organized mostly by members of one very small gay AA group, Live & Let Live, the only gay AA group in Atlantic Canada.


By Mike A. October 2, 2011

In August, 1988 we had the first Canadian National AA Roundup which had nearly 5,000 people at one time in the Metro Center. People from all over the US and Canada (and perhaps other continents, not sure) came to this gathering. Eyebrows were raised, eyes rolled when 3 people who got up to read Steps, Traditions, etc. said "Hello, my name is _____ and I am a GAY alcoholic." The G Word caused a slight flap.

One member, JJLyon, met a number of friends of Bill W. and 'Dorothy.' He was tall and carrying a shoulder-bag, they couldn't miss him. Someone said, "There are an awful lot of 'us' here, perhaps we should have our own meeting!" A Flyer was typed up and put on notice boards and a member from Vancouver said we could have a meeting in his Suite (at the Sheraton, now called Marriott) which had a large meeting room.

Twenty-seven people came to our meeting on Sunday afternoon. Surprise! We're everywhere! It was a most uplifting meeting, we were all impressed that so many nice people came on short notice. Several people said, "Hey! We could have our own Roundup!"

GeorginaChambers? and Leonard, Mike A's partner, were surprised that they were nominated - right out of the blue - to be our first Co-Chairs. They accepted (relented?) and a date was set for October to have a meeting to discuss the possibilities.

MarilynKellough, a N.S. artist designed The Courage Logo - a stylized sailboat, burgundy on pink, made with triangles.

Father LouisCaissie at St. Peters in Dartmouth said we could rent space in the hall next to the church. That hall was our home from our very first Round Up July, 1989 until 2000. That first year had 45 registrations; the second year the number was 35, then the third year somewhere between 35-40. The largest turnout happened in the fourth year, in 1992, when we had 3 members die in a 14 month period; 65 people came that year.

After the 2000 Round Up, we were lucky to find the UniversalistUnitarianChurch at 5500 Inglis St. which has been a welcoming space for us since then.

August 5, 2011 to 7th saw us put on our 23rd Courage Roundup which had 35 registered participants which was larger than the previous couple of years. At times we wondered if we would continue receiving support.

We have had people come from Vancouver, Toronto, St. John's, New York City, Jacksonville FL., San Francisco, all over New Brunswick, P.E.I., Quebec, Canso, Truro, Yarmouth, Sydney, Nictaux, Summerside, Charlottetown and many more places.

The AA program suggests that we may find ourselves 'along the road to happy destiny'. The Courage Roundup has helped us to learn that working a program doesn't have to seem like drudgery. All of us have met people that we will never forget, and we have gotten to know ourselves better. The roundup has been worthwhile. Most of us look forward eagerly to next year!