Celebrates community diversity and belonging
A community celebration of belonging, led by Methow Pride, will be held Sunday (June 25) in Twisp.
Sunday’s events include a Pride Parade that leaves the Twisp Park at 11 a.m. Participants will gather in the park starting at 10 a.m.
The parade will travel along Glover Street to TwispWorks. A Pride Fest will be held throughout the day on the TwispWorks campus, featuring speakers, games, dancing, roller skating, karaoke, and resource tables for local organizations.
Food will be available during the festival from Fork and Mountain Meals, and the Old Schoolhouse Taproom will open at noon for the event.
This year’s Pride Fest also includes the return of the Drag Race competition, last held in 2014. The Drag Race involves stations with shoes, hats/wigs, accessories and clothing for all cross-gender dressing, where contestants are attired by dressers to create fabulous outfits. Dressed contestants will walk a catwalk on the mainstage at the TwispWorks Pavilion and the winner is chosen by the audience.
People who want to make a sign for the parade can join a sign making party at the OSB Taproom on Thursday (June 22), from 5-7 p.m. All supplies will be provided as well as music by DJ Kish.
Organizers of the Pride events say Pride Month’s anti-discrimination message is especially important this year, in light of more than 500 anti-LGBTQ bills that are currently proposed at state and federal levels. Many of those bills target trans-people.
“If ever there was a time when community needed to stand together and celebrate, it is now,” said Kelly Edwards, a co-lead of Methow Pride. Methow Pride is a nonprofit organization with a goal of “fostering community, inclusiveness and belonging,” and is fiscally sponsored by Room One.
“We want everyone in our community to feel safe to be fully themselves, especially our young people,” Edwards said.
“It is critical for our community and schools to provide a safe space for LGBTQ+ youth to explore who they are becoming, and celebrate that journey along the way,” said Eva Aneshansley, a Liberty Bell High School teacher and adviser to the school’s Gender Sexuality Alliance.
Methow Pride is hosting other events this week in celebration of Pride Month, including:
• Thursday (June 22) 5-7 p.m. at OSB Taproom: Pride sign-making throw down with DJ Kish, with cross-over to Fireweed Print Shop on the TwispWorks campus and roller skating in between. All ages welcome.
• Friday (June 23) noon-3 p.m. at Fireweed Print Shop: Young Queer Maker Space, ages 12-17. Create buttons, screen printing, sun prints, letterpress flags, shirts, patches, vinyl records. Ice cream sandwiches and pizza provided. Cost is $25 and scholarships are available. No one will be turned away due to lack of funds. To register or for questions contact Laura Gunnip, 509-449-1789. For scholarship info contact Methow Pride, email@example.com.
• Friday (June 23) 9 p.m.-1:30 a.m. at Methow Valley Cider House: Late night dance party for 21 years and over.
More than 30 local organizations are supporting Methow Pride events with financial contributions, in-kind donations and visibility in businesses, organizers said. “We are lifted up by the tremendous community support we’re seeing this year,” said Sarah Studen, Methow Pride co-lead.
Pride Month has its origins in honoring the 1969 Stonewall Riots, when members of the gay community in New York City fought back against longstanding discriminatory and brutal treatment by police. The riots are seen as a catalyst for the gay rights movement in the United States and around the world.
More information about Methow Pride is available at the website, methowpride.org, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.