Visibility. Education. Celebration. Those three words represent the mission of Pride NW.
Pride NW was founded in 1994 with the goal of encouraging and celebrating the positive diversity of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans communities of the Pacific Northwest. The organization also aims to assist in the education of all people through the development of activities that showcase the history, accomplishments, and talents of the local LGBTQ community. They are most known for their annual Portland Pride Waterfront Festival and Parade, the largest LGBTQ cultural celebration between San Francisco and Seattle.
The organization also works to celebrate and support the whole of the Pacific Northwest’s LGBTQ community year-round. Pride NW works with the city of Portland to improve the safety and livability of the LGBTQ community, supporting other Pride organizations like Q Center, Latino Pride, Black Pride, and API Pride, World AIDS Day and incarcerated LGBT youth. The artistic talents of LGBTQ are also showcased with the help of Pride NW. Their goal is to provide visibility and to celebrate the culture and contributions of the local LGBTQ community.
Pride NW is holding a number of upcoming events. On Tuesday June 13th, they present the 2017 Portland Pride Kick-off Party. The party begins at 6pm at Lagunitas Community Room 237 NE Broadway St Suite 300 in Portland. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. All proceeds support Pride Northwest and Portland Pride.
On June 14th Pride NW presents a Celebration of Generations. This event will be an evening of change-making intergenerational connection and conversation. Doors open for this event at 6pm and it will be held at Portland Community College Cascade campus (705 N. Killingsworth St.).
On June 16th they present an 80’s Dance-Attack Benefit event. Get dressed up in your best 80s outfit and dance to the hits as music videos from MTV’s greatest era are projected onto giant video screens with a massive sound & light show hosted by VJ Kittyrox. This benefit takes place at the Crystal Ballroom (332 W Burnside St.). Doors open at 9pm.
June 17th-18th the Portland Pride Waterfront Festival takes place at Tom McCall Park (SW Pine St & SW Naito Parkway). Exhibitor booths are open from noon until 8pm on Saturday and 11:30am until 6pm on Sunday. Admission is $7 and all proceeds go to Pride NW.
Also on June 17th The Official Portland Trans Pride March takes place at the North Blocks (NW 8th Ave & NW Davis St) in downtown Portland. The march begins at 2pm and runs until 4:30pm. Later that day at 6pm (until 7pm) is the 2017 Portland Dyke March at Tom McCall Waterfront Park.
The Portland Gay Men’s Chorus presents “The Divos” on June 17th. Doors open for the concert at 7pm (until 9pm). The festivities take place at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall (1037 SW Broadway). The Divos features the biggest hits by music’s most legendary male artists, including Simon and Garfunkel, Michael Jackson, Nat King Cole, Elton John, and Bruno Mars. This is a one night only celebration.
The 6th annual Gaylabration takes place at 9pm on June 17th at the Tao Event Center (631 NE Grand Ave). Gaylabration is the featured Saturday night dance party of Pride weekend and has expanded its mission to include enhancing the dance music scene in Portlanb by bringing in premier DJs and production.
On June 18th, The Portland Pride Parade takes place. The parade starts at the North Park Blocks ( NW 8th Ave & NW Davis St). Festivities begin at 11am and run until 1pm.
If you’d like to volunteer and make a difference at Pride NW you can contact them here.
This week at Portland Radio Project we feature the Pride NW as part of our award-winning Community Voices series. You can listen below to interviews with key members of the organization:
Paul Iarrobino, Pride NW event Emcee
Debra Porta, Executive Director Pride NW