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Pridefest 2011 is sure to be bigger and better than before.
The 8th annual Boulder Pridefest, an Out Boulder sponsored GLBTQ pride event, will take place in Boulder’s Central Park – with events continuing through Sunday.
Aicila Lewis, executive director of Out Boulder, said Pridefest has evolved from small beginnings.
“The first series of Pride events occurred in 1994, and the festival-like experience that we are doing this year started in 2003 as a small, sort of block party where the Pride House currently is and it has grown into this larger event in the park.”
Lewis said Pridefest’s new Central Park location should draw more attention from the Boulder community compared to the years it was held on Pearl Street.
The event is a forum for the GLBTQ community to connect with the greater Boulder County community. Lewis believes it is also a great social forum for CU students.
“It’s also a great way for [students] to learn a little bit more about what the GLBTQ community in Boulder County looks like in a way that they can participate – either as people who identify as part of the community or people who identify as allies.”
Kevin Correa, Interim Director at CU’s GLBTQ Resource Center, said the Center is supporting Pridefest and will actively participate.
“We will have a booth at the main event for people to gather and to get campus resources and information,” said Correa. “Although Boulder Pridefest is not a campus event, it is an important event for the CU GLBTQ Resource Center and for CU students to be a part of because we are all part of the Boulder community.”
Correa said the event is a celebration, as well as an important way for CU students and to surrounding community to recognize diversity.
“Boulder Pridefest is a wonderful opportunity to bring together CU students, staff, and faculty with other Boulder County residents for the purposes of celebrating our identities and diversity, fostering connections, and being Out and visible,” said Correa. “We look forward to it each year.”
Victoria Michaelson, a junior sociology major, heads Biphoria – a CU student group for bisexuals, pansexuals, queer identified individuals, and their allies. Michaelson said events like Pridefest are essential for herself, her friends, and her community.
“[The event] increases visibility letting us know we’re not alone,” said Michaelson. “It catalyzes friendships and networking so we can organize events and strengthen and continue to grow as a community.”
“Life can be tough and it’s important for us to be proud of who we are and how we feel,” Michaelson continued.
Michaelson said she hopes to represent Biphoria in next year’s Pridefest.
“I am aiming for Biphoria to have a much more active role in next year’s Boulder Pride,” Michaelson said. “I think Boulder Pride is just an empowering, inclusive, and fun experience for everyone involved.”
For more information about Pridefest and for a list of events, visit their website.
Contact CU Independent Breaking News Editor Nora Keating at Nora.firstname.lastname@example.org