It’s that time of year, Pride is almost upon us. After the COVID break we finally get to celebrate together again. This year’s Pride will be bigger and better than ever.
Don’t miss She Fest on Saturday July 9, 2022, from 12-6 PM. This year it will be held at the Pride Flag on Normal St. This is a festival for women, by women. All women owned businesses and entertainment for everyone to enjoy. Everyone is welcome. Come out and support the Lesbian and Women’s community. There’s something for everyone.
On the night of Friday July 15, the Stonewall Rally will be held on Normal St. at the Pride Flag. This year we will have some speakers from our Trans youth community. They have been selected as this year’s Community Grand Marshals.
Immediately after the Rally, there will be the annual Pride Block Party in the same location. The block party will be held on both Thursday July 14 and Friday July 15, right after the Stonewall Rally. Lots of music and fun to kick off the Pride weekend. To see all the Pride Events, go to www.sdpride.org/events.
On Saturday July 16 at 10 AM is the annual Pride Parade. Looks like this year will be another great parade with many participants. The Parade kicks off as usual on Normal St. and heads west on University Ave, turning left at 6th Avenue and ending at Balboa Park. If you want to march in the parade the local Trans community has been invited to march with the LGBT Center. Just show up and join in. This year Trans youth are being honored as the Community Grand Marshal’s and will be marching at the front of the Parade. If you are a youth and wish to march with the group just show up by 9:30 AM. If you are parents of a Trans youth, there will be a group marching directly behind the youth group of all parents and guardians of our Trans youth.
The festival opens at 11 AM on Saturday and Sunday, July 16 and 17. Closing hours are 11 PM on Saturday and 9 PM on Sunday. There are five different stages and a variety of entertainment.
As always there is a special Trans area at the festival. This year we have combined Trans Pride and the T Spot Trans Festival area to create a warm, welcoming and safe place for the Trans community and others to gather. Trans Pride Village will be located at the loop – the area on Balboa Dr. where the road loops back around at the bottom of Marston Pt.
There will be vendors such as therapists, local clinics, and other medical resources. There will be local Trans artists, a tarot card reader, and local resources for the Trans community. There will be tables and chairs where you can sit and chill. Since there will be no fenced in beer gardens this year, feel free to grab a cocktail and bring it on down to the village and enjoy some relaxation among your community.
I am hoping this begins a new tradition with expanded features next year. Leave us suggestions as to what fun things we can add at the 2023 Pride. Be sure and come by at some point during the weekend and thank our participating community organizations for giving their time and talents to help our community grow even better, stronger, and more resilient.
As our community continues to be under attack in so many places in this country and the world, I am so grateful that here in California, especially in San Diego, we can continue to celebrate and grow. Hope to see many of you at San Diego Pride.
Although the Center isn’t back to its previous hours of operations yet, the Transgender Groups are still going strong on Zoom. There is a Monday Coming Out Group for Trans and Non-binary folks, a Wednesday Night Trans Masculine and Non-binary masculine identified folks, a Friday Night Non-Binary group and lastly a Saturday discussion held every Saturday from 5-7 PM.
A couple groups though have transitioned to in person groups like Transgenero 2000. This group has been going strong since the year 2000 and is a necessary support for our Latina and Latino community. All meetings are held in Spanish, and all are welcome. Please contact [email protected] for more information on all the Transgender Groups.
On a final note, I have been helping with ongoing Police Training. The law AB2504 requires that all California Law Enforcement agencies be trained on sexual orientation and gender identity. The San Diego Police Department has begun training all their field officers and supervisors, and I am very proud to be part of this team. My hope is to help law enforcement with better understanding of Transgender people and our issues, which in turn will make them better equipped to handle any special circumstances and situations requiring knowledge of our community. My hope is that in turn I can help educate us on how to deal with law enforcement. One thing I hope for now is that everyone will feel comfortable in reaching out to me if they have any concerns about a particular encounter or even with general questions regarding the respect and treatment we deserve as citizens. Change is always a two-way street so let’s work together for a better community. You can email me at [email protected].