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  • 1.  Help! Pride Event Planning Advice?

    Posted 03-02-2022 07:46

    Hi all!  

    I'm in a Chicago suburb and I'm involved in a community group collaborating with the local high school to plan our town's first ever LGBTQIA+ Pride event in June.  It's going to take place outdoors at the high school, with crafts, games, and performances.

    I have a background in meeting/conference design, but this is my first outdoor festival-type event and my first time planning a Pride event.

    Do you have any advice/wisdom?  I'd welcome anything about logistics, best/worst activities, how to create an accessible/welcoming environment, etc.  What questions should I be asking that I haven't thought of? :)  

    Thanks so much!

    Heather



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    Heather Dean
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  • 2.  RE: Help! Pride Event Planning Advice?

    Posted 03-02-2022 07:48
    Hey @Heather Dean! Great question here. I'm tagging in @Nick Kapling and @Amanda Court who have experience in planning Pride events, and @Mandi Ginn-Franz who has a ton of experience with LGBTQ SafeZones. Also, @Jennifer Kimball is a meeting & event ROCKSTAR! ​​​​​​

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    Stay awesome,
    Quinn
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  • 3.  RE: Help! Pride Event Planning Advice?

    Posted 03-03-2022 10:52
    Congratulations, Heather! 

    What an awesome opportunity-I'm leaving just a quick note to say that I am absolutely game to connect and chat about this more, and that I will type a better response up in a day or two.

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    -Nick
    Evanston
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  • 4.  RE: Help! Pride Event Planning Advice?

    Posted 03-07-2022 16:31
    Okay, 

    So, for activities, I think an awards moment is always well-received, and there are different ways you might think about this:
    Spirit Award--either for individuals or clubs or some other designation of groups--can go a long way. 
    • Individuals on the day-of: outfit/costume (think cat walk contest with clapping for votes) or t-shirt design
    • Groups: decorated door or bulletin board (judged day-of or before hand by a panel)
    Experience Note: I once created a Spirit Stick--think something I held as a grand marshall to the pride parade--a 3+ foot cylindrical object covered in ribbons and other rainbow assorted things. With a My Little Pony glued to the top. I decided that this, or an object like it, could serve as a legacy award, one that keeps getting passed down and updated year after year to the next winner. So, think about what you are giving as the award in addition to how the award ceremony might play out.
    Rainbow awards--Give an award for each color in the updated pride flag, establishing what each color stands for and how that group or individual exudes that specific trait. This can be truly specific to your people or it can be an awareness campaign of Transgender Warriors or other LGBTQ folks you want to celebrate. 
    Experience note: I've done this at a Queer Prom for Prom Court and awards were either printed certificates with the year or combined certificate with an object/trophy or item that represents the award.

    Parade to Table--you may not need to shut down traffic or streets to do this, and it could be a small gathering of clubs and organizations that walk around the school (the block?), in colors, with banners/signs/chants where the "end" of the parade is the outdoor set up--and each group files in and goes to their booth or table, where they are hosting an activity--a game or face painting or whatever. And hangs their banner on their table or has a place to put their posters/signs. 

    Wall Smash--For a Break the Silence day, I once constructed a cinder block wall, and then had students take turns spray painting (in a lead up to the event) the harmful things they'd heard on the wall. During the event, they put on goggles and took turns smashing it. While it was a lot of work, it was a huge hit with the high schoolers. 

    That's all for now! 
    I hope this gets those juices flowing!

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    -Nick
    Evanston
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  • 5.  RE: Help! Pride Event Planning Advice?

    Posted 03-08-2022 17:47
    Thanks!  I love that cinderblock idea in particular!  Your message is another good reminder to be thinking about traditions and how to prepare for next year (not just traditions but writing down what went well, how to improve, etc.)



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    Heather Dean
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  • 6.  RE: Help! Pride Event Planning Advice?

    Posted 03-15-2022 10:35
    @Nick Kapling, I want you on any future brainstorm team I'm ever on!  These ideas are so creative, inspiring and just plain fantastic. The brick wall smash/Break the Silence is absolutely fierce. Where is the heart emoji?!

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    Maria Mooshil
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  • 7.  RE: Help! Pride Event Planning Advice?

    Posted 03-21-2022 14:15
    @Heather Dean, how is your planning coming? I read @Nick Kapling's ideas-- I'm always in awe of her creativity!

    @Elizabeth Wyman, I noticed you had event planning experience. Maybe you have advice/best practices for Heather?
    ​​​

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    -Brianne
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  • 8.  RE: Help! Pride Event Planning Advice?

    Posted 04-01-2022 18:31
    It's going well, thanks for asking! The students were just on Spring Break and so we were paused and then had a super busy week coming back.  I'm feeling much better about budgety things and logistical pieces.  We're in the fun part of dreaming up things and implementing them now :)  Last night we had a big brainstorming session where people shared their ideas for activities/entertainment, etc. on digital post it's and then people voted up their favorites. It worked really well as a idea sharing and prioritizing exercise.  

    We're planning on having a few exhibitors, like the library, local LGBTQ+ support center, etc.  If anyone has recs for fun activities for when you're tabling I'd be happy to hear them :)

    We're also working on a quiet space for people who need a break for the noise/chaos with comfy seats, fidget toys, and possibly a therapy dog.  

    There's also talk of getting some teachers/staff in a dunk tank as a fundraiser... :)

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    Heather Dean
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  • 9.  RE: Help! Pride Event Planning Advice?

    Posted 04-04-2022 08:54
    @Heather Dean - I love that you're working on a way to create a quiet space. It's something that's so important AND something that a lot of people overlook in the planning process.

    As far as tabling games - are you thinking games for people to do when they come to your table, or games to keep you occupied during a lull? (Both, I think, are important!)

    For people coming to your table, you could make a "Pride bingo" card (like one of those "get to know you" bingo cards) and have them fill it out then bring a completed one back to you? Could be for a silly prize like a sticker or if you've got budget, maybe it's a raffle for a bigger prize? Bozo buckets is always fun if you have the room by your table.

    For you while tabling during a lull, a good game of I Spy can be fun. Or 20 questions. Also, if there are a couple of folks at the table, it's sometimes fun to pop by a different table and learn what's happening/share back with your table.


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    Stay awesome,
    Quinn
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  • 10.  RE: Help! Pride Event Planning Advice?

    Posted 05-10-2022 10:55
    @Heather Dean This is amazing!

    I'm a big craft person and I remember spending hours making these friendship bracelets in high school!
    • https://sarahmaker.com/easy-friendship-bracelet-patterns/ 
    • https://www.twoofwands.com/blog/pride-bracelets-2019 
    Maybe it would be a good "quiet" activity.​

    -Sara

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    Sara Tetzloff
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