Picnics, Performances, Festivals and Films: Upcoming Gay Pride Events in the Region

Why are most gay pride events held in June? The Stonewall riots, which took place 46 years ago this month in New York City, mark the traditional start of the LGBT liberation movement. With pro-gay civil rights demonstrations dating to July 1965, Philadelphia lays claim to an earlier genesis of the struggle for equality. Some college groups hold pride commemorations in
October, which is LGBT History Month,
with a spring complement called Gaypril.
Although celebrating your authentic self should not be constrained by the calendar, here are some area events
that are coming up.
KC PrideFest: June 5-7 at Richard Berkley Riverfront Park
“Love Is the Cure” is the theme for the Kansas City Diversity Coalition's 2015 KC PrideFest. Pride-related events include these activities the week of the festival.
Educational symposia
June 2 at 7 p.m.UMKC’s Haag Hall
5120 Rockhill Rd.
Kansas City, Mo.

Presentation topics include self-defense, LGBT legal issues, Drag 101, employment discrimination, PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis) and female sexuality.
Interfaith Service
June 3 at 7 p.m.
Central Presbyterian Church
3501 Campbell St.
Kansas City, Mo.

Presented by the Kansas City Coalition for Welcoming Ministries.
PrideFest
June 5
6-11:30 p.m.
Richard Berkley Riverfront Park
1000 E. Riverfront Rd.
Kansas City, Mo.

Internationally known DJ Barry Harris and Cyon Flare, known for high-energy dance and music.
PrideFest
June 6
noon-11 p.m.
Richard Berkley Riverfront Park
1000 E. Riverfront Rd.
Kansas City, Mo.

“The First Ladies of Disco” will be headlining the evening — Martha Wash, Linda Clifford and Evelyn “Champagne” King. Other entertainers that day will include MK Nobilette and Josh Zuckerman.
PrideFest
June 7
Richard Berkley Riverfront Park
noon-6 p.m.
1000 E. Riverfront Rd.
Kansas City, Mo.

Many favorite local performers will be featured.
$5 admission on Friday and Saturday; Sunday admission is free. Children 12 and younger are free. To buy tickets, volunteer or find more information, go to gaypridekc.org or go to Facebook.com and search for Kansas City PrideFest 2015.
Big Gay Picnic
New group to host The Big Gay Picnic on June 14 at Penn Valley Park
Last year, a group of area LGBT leaders met to discuss emphasizing values such as inclusiveness, diversity and transparency in the pride-celebration planning process. These leaders formed the MoKan Comm-UNITY Consortium as a result. With the ideals of community leadership, volunteerism and a healthy spirit of unity as guides, this new group has been meeting regularly for several months.
The event arm of the MoKan Comm-UNITY Consortium is known as Out KC Fest (facebook.com/outkcfest), and its first event will be The Big Gay Picnic from 3 to 8 p.m. Sunday, June 14, at Penn Valley Park in Kansas City, Mo.
“Bring your own basket,” says KC Green, event planner for the picnic. The event is free. In addition to baskets with personal food and drink, blankets and sunscreen, attendees may bring basketballs, footballs, volleyballs, kickballs, rackets, gloves, etc. There will be kids’ activities, giveaways and pick-up games for adults. Good Samaritan Project will conduct health screenings, and DJ Transition will provide entertainment. There will be no commercial vendors at the park.
Green has been in the Kansas City area for about 10 years, moving here from Lubbock, Texas. He’s active in Kansas City Frontrunners &amp

Bradley Osborn

Brad has been writing for Camp since 2004. His beat is mostly local features and general LGBT news. Common topics have included youth, faith and community. Although he holds an M.A. in journalism, he primarily considers himself to be a chemist, having studied and worked in biochemistry, quantitative analysis, quality assurance and the production of educational science texts. He's laconic, unintentionally enigmatic and often facetious. He enjoys irony, as well as things – but not animals, apparently – that are simultaneously beautiful and utilitarian. He and his cat, Charlie Parker, reside in downtown Kansas City, Mo. If you have a story idea for Brad, send him a note at bosborn@campkc.com.

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