Put on your rainbow apparel and get ready for a weekend filled with Pride events as Gainesville offers an array of activities geared toward the LGBTQ+ community.
1. Guts & Glory GNV will host a storytelling event at The Wooly at 7 p.m. on Thursday. It is the second year it is hosting stories to celebrate Gainesville Pride, and the event is open to members of the LGBTQ+ community and allies. Tickets are $15 for the general public and $10 for students.
2. The Pride Community Center of North Central Florida will host its monthly Gay Movie Night on Friday. “Monster Pies” will be shown at 7:30 p.m. There is a requested $2 donation to cover snack costs.
Though the showing was not specifically chosen for the weekend’s Pride events, Greg Allen, who has hosted Gay Movie Night for almost 15 years, said he hopes the coinciding weekend will help draw a bigger crowd.
“Seeing gay people represented in mainstream movies helps LGBTQ youth feel they are a valued part of society,” Allen wrote in a message. “[Media representation] also helps non-LGBTQ youth see that their LGBTQ classmates/friends are pretty much the same as them, with [the] same dreams and desires for a happy life that includes love and compassion and equality.”
3. Gainesville Pride Day will be celebrated all day Saturday with the annual parade and festival. Co-sponsored by the Pride Community Center and the City of Gainesville Department of Cultural Affairs, the parade will begin at noon on Seventh Street and West University Avenue. The festival in Bo Diddley Plaza will go until 9 p.m. and will feature over 100 vendors and dozens of local music acts.
4. Starting at 9 p.m. on Saturday, Flourish~ A Pride Dance Party will be co-hosted by Connect the Dots, a music, media and visual arts collective, and the Civic Media Center. It will feature sets by local DJs Aut Vel, Conjay and Mannat and Sirat, who will be playing techno, hip-hop and perreo music. It is open to all ages and is donation-based.
Mannat Saraon, 21, will play an experimental electronic set with her twin sister, Sirat, in their first show at the Civic Media Center.
“Queer spaces are important for both of us,” Mannat Saraon wrote in a message. “We hope to make everyone feel comfortable and especially aim to show the people some cool music/sounds that they might have not heard before.”
Manu Osorio, the founder of Connect the Dots, said hiring queer DJs a priority for the party.
"We believe queer people should be provided a spotlight for queer events," Osorio wrote in a message. "Each DJ we picked we also either personally know, have friends in common with, or have seen perform live before."
5. Daisy Nation will lead a free yoga class called Practice With Pride at noon Sunday. It will take place at the Pride Community Center and is open to everyone, both LGBTQ+ and allies. It is organized by YogaLoka, a nonprofit which offers wellness services to traditionally marginalized communities.
Earlier this year, YogaLoka started hosting monthly yoga classes as a way to offer a safe space for people in those communities, program director Liz Getman said.
“Some individuals at the Pride Center have said they look forward to having a class post-Pride event so that they can sort of unwind,” she said.