Lynn Raridon began working at Forbidden Fruit in 1982, one year after the store opened. Original owner/founder Mark Garfinkel pioneered the concept of the Home Party Sale in Austin and Lynn became one of the first presenters, then worked the counter and managed the shop from 1983-87. She purchased the business in 1987 and with her staff has made it into the iconic and award winning business it is today. In 2011, her sister and long time employee/manager Jere Raridon became a full partner and co-owner of Forbidden Fruit. Lynn has been an adjunct faculty member in the Kinesiology Department at Austin Community College since 1987. Blissfully married, she is the mother of one. A woman of many talents, Lynn earned her BFA in dance from the University of Texas in 1983.
Lynn choreographed and directed musicals in Austin since from 1982-2004 and at that time, transitioned her directing talents into the burlesque revival started in Austin by Kitty Kitty Bang Bang.During that time,he served as consulting artistic director, choreographed 3 signature pieces and added to numerous others for the troupe. Currently, Lynn directs most of her talents to event production and serves as Director and Co-Producer of the Texas Burlesque Festival (2008-present) and Co-producer and Talent coordinator for The Austin Zombie Ball (2011-present). She is a proud and very active member of the Austin Burlesque Alliance. Lynn is a licensed wildlife rehabilitator for the State of Texas (small mammals/raccoon specialist) and a Director of the Bill Hicks Wildlife Foundation and Wolfdog Rescue since 1998.
Jere Raridon has been an integral part of the company’s many faces and phases since 1992. She managed the body arts salon on 6th Street from 1995-2004. In 2011, she became fully invested with her sister as co-owner of Forbidden Fruit in its current manifestation. As co-owner, one of Jere’s missions is having a strong dedication to our patrons needs by ensuring that Forbidden Fruit is always stocked with a great selection of quality merchandise at the right price and purchasing from and supporting local toymakers. Jere founded the Bill Hicks Wildlife Foundation in 1992 and is a small mammals and raccoon specialist. She absolutely lives for her work with the animal rescue program and is the current caretaker of the worlfdogs, Balthazar and Arthus, who can often be seen hanging out in the office of the Fruit!
Kitchi was a beloved friend of Forbidden Fruit, its staff, and clientele. Kitchi means “Great Spirit” in many Algonquian languages. After escaping his cell at the animal shelter at least three times, he was rescued from state custody and euthanasia by the good people at the Bill Hicks Wildlife Foundation. He became a trusted companion to Jere Raridon, one of Forbidden Fruit’s owners and founder of the Wildlife Foundation. He took to his final rest in 2014. Namaste, old friend.
Jonny Reynolds is a founding member and the Master of Ceremonies of the Bat City Bombshells. He has been producing shows throughout Austin since 2009 from the Red Shed down south, throughout downtown, and as far north as Dallas. In 2012, he took over the front of house staffing and box office responsibilities for Forbidden Fruit Productions including the 3 day long Texas Burlesque Festival. His study of all things kink began when he moved from Las Vegas to Texas and asked the question “Why is this forbidden, but that is not?” The exploration of this question has provided him with the knowledge and resources to truly be considered a Sexpert.
Lorelei Fuller started her voyage into sexual education at the New College of California, SF, where gender politics in language and rights for sex industry workers was a focus. A traveling performance artist with the Genital Puppet Theatre, vaudeville folks, and New Orleans kinksters followed. In 1998 she founder The Shim Shamettes, the New Orleans based neo-burlesque originator where she directed, co-choreographed, and enjoyed making “SEXY” comfortable for all types of people by embracing satire and humor to soothe any woes.
After being displaced by Hurricane Katrina, she eventually landed in Austin and, lucky for us, in Forbidden Fruit. An avid animal lover, working with the Bill Hicks Foundation was a given. A love for animals, all things sexy, sexual freedom and rock & roll came together and the rest is history!
Megan E. Church grew up in a pretty Queer way with two gay parents. From birth, Megan has cultivated a background in gender and sexuality education. She’s dedicated her life to sharing information about safer sex and kink practices to support adults in healthier and more fulfilling relationships. On her 40th move around the good ‘ol USA, she landed in Austin- the only place she didn’t feel like a space alien. (She’s probably a space alien, though.)