Taking Pride: June is LGBTQ Pride Month
Fifty-four years ago, police raided a gay nightclub known as the Stonewall Inn in New York City which launched six days of riots and protests. Central to the demands of the LGBTQ community were the right of expression and the right to gather freely without fear of reprisal. One year after this event, the first Gay Pride March took place, known as “The Christopher Street Liberation Day Parade.” In the five decades since the Stonewall Riots, recognition of this landmark moment has morphed into a full month of celebration known as Pride Month.
Locally, Newport is celebrating its sixth annual official LGBTQ Pride Month, kicking it off with a raising of the Pride Flag at City Hall on June 2. The colorful rainbow flag was created in 1978 with the input of Harvey Milk, a San-Francisco-based politician, one of the LGBTQ community’s strongest advocates. The rainbow flag as we’ve come to know it has recently been reconceptualized as the Progress Pride Flag to be even more inclusive.
On June 2, Newport Pride & Newport Out, two local organizations whose mission is to position Newport and the surrounding areas as welcoming and inclusive to the LGBTQ community, hosted Pride: A Retrospective at the Newport Art Museum with the support of The Donovan Group and Getty Images. This exhibition will be on display throughout the month of June and will “transport you on an emotional journey through the history of the fight for equal rights in the LGBTQIA+ community. Step inside defining moments of queer history through captivating visual storytelling of pride marches, including the events leading up to the Stonewall riots and the first Queer Liberation March of 1970.”
June 28, 2023 is the official “Gay Pride Day” celebrated throughout the country as the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots although it is typically honored on the last Sunday in June. This year, it will be commemorated with a host of parades and festivals throughout the Ocean State and Bay State including:
June 23, 06:30 pm, Newport Pride Drag Cruise in Newport
June 24, 11:00 am, Newport Pride Fest & Market + Pride Ride 2023 in Newport
June 24, 12:00 pm, Newport Pride Ride 2023 in Newport
June 17th, all day, Rhode Island Pride
June 9th and 10th, Boston Pride Parade and Festivities
A host of events took place the weekend of June 2-4.
All of these events celebrate the diversity and strength of the LGBTQ+ community. Pride Month is a perfect time to reflect on the progress that has been made while continuing to promote equality and acceptance for all.