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Students gather for a discussion in Scripps Amphitheater in celebration of Pride Day on April 22.

Pride Week returns with full week of celebrations

Pride Week has returned as a full week of events this year and will feature a one-person performance piece, vigil, drag show and more.

Pride Week is a full week this year, and members and allies of the LGBT community are ready to reclaim the week after last year’s celebration included only one event.

Ohio University Student Senate is sponsoring the week and the LGBT Center is taking a supporting role, delfin bautista, the director of the LGBT Center, said.

“I think that’s great, though, that it’s students celebrating with students,” bautista, who uses they/them pronouns and the lowercase spelling of their name, said. “Rather than me coming up with ideas … it’s you all as students sort of claiming your voice and claiming the space.”

Pride Week is not only about the visual aspect such as parades, but also the opportunity to lift up the pain and the struggles of LGBT people while also celebrating together, bautista said.

There are several events throughout the week to both celebrate and commemorate LGBT issues.

“It takes a village to address injustice, and it takes a village to party,” bautista said.

Pride Week was reduced to one event last year, according to a previous Post report. The event included one discussion held outside in the Scripps Amphitheater titled “Be Proud.”

“Last year was a disappointment,” bautista said. “We were just reduced to the day, and a day that wasn’t very advertised.”

It is important to have a weeklong celebration, bautista said, because LGBT people often feel invisible and the week should be something big to show that “we’re here and we’re queer and we’re not going anywhere,” bautista said.

However, similar to months like Black History Month, bautista said Pride Week should not be the only time that LGBT people are recognized and discussed. It is highlighted a bit more during the celebration, but the conversation should not be limited to one week.

People who do not identify as LGBT should not only be recognizing the stories and struggles of LGBT individuals, but they also should be celebrating with them, bautista said.

“When we talk about celebrating and lifting up LGBT voices … we also recognize that folks who are not LGBT also have a place in doing that,” bautista said.

On Tuesday, a vigil will take place as “a time for all to come out and speak about memories good and bad,” Paige Klatt, the LGBTQA commissioner for senate, said in an email.

Kristo Gobin, a professor at Loyola Marymount University, will speak at the vigil. The following day, Gobin will perform “That’s So Gay!”, a one-person performance piece that Gobin wrote, which chronicles the personal and public struggles of coming to terms with one’s sexuality. The performance will be at 8 p.m. in Walter Hall 145.

Closing out the week, there will be a drag show in Bobcat Student Lounge on Friday and a dance party at Jackie O’s Pub and Brewery on Saturday.

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Klatt said the goal of the weeklong celebration is to give people in the LGBT community an opportunity to celebrate how far they have come and to create a safe space.

Every day, we are overcoming obstacles and this is a time we can continue to grow and help educate those outside and within our community,” Klatt said in an email. “Everyone is welcome, and I encourage all to attend as many events as possible.”


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