Virginia Pride hosts summer-long campaign celebrating LGBT community

Pridefest makes grand return after pandemic induced hiatus
VA Pridefest
VA Pridefest will return to Brown's Island in September after a three-year hiatus.(Virginia Pride)
Published: May. 8, 2022 at 11:21 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Virginia Pride is celebrating the Richmond region’s LGBTQ+ community in its “Endless Summer of Pride” campaign.

Starting June 1 towards the end of September, there will be a minimum of 20 events including Pride Month ceremonial events, family-friendly events and events for adults 21 and older.

“June 1 will kick off what we expect to be the most coordinated series of observances of LGBTQ Pride Month the Richmond Region has ever seen,” said James Millner, Program Director at Virginia Pride in a release. “Nearly everywhere you turn, you’ll be reminded that it’s Pride Month. We are bringing businesses, sports and community organizations and government and cultural institutions together to send a powerful message that the LGBTQ community is welcome and celebrated here.”

On June 1 Mayor Levar Stoney will raise the Progress Pride flag and issue a Pride Month proclamation at City Hall.

Later in the month, GRTC will unveil its “Pride Bus” wrapped in LGBTQ pride colors to the public with the message “Love Connects Us” on each side, logos from local LGBTQ organizations and QR codes that link to Richmond Region Tourism’s website with information on LGBTQ events and resources.

The city will also illuminate Main Street Station in pride colors. Other businesses will light up with pride as well including Dominion Energy, the Hampton Inn Downtown, Bank of America and Altria. Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden will also illuminate its Conservatory dome in a public ceremony and host other pride-themed events throughout the month.

Additional events include the MonGays at the Byrd Movie Series, Pride Month Happy Hour at Common House, Hardywood Brewery’s annual “Love on Tap” event and “Pride Night at the Diamond” with the Flying Squirrels, among other events to benefit Virginia Pride and its community partners.

“The Endless Summer of Pride has something for everyone,” said Rae Berryman, Chair of the Virginia Pride Committee. “We want the entire Richmond Region to join in celebrating our LGBTQ community like never before.

Not only is summer 2022 full of pride events, but Virginia Pride’s signature festival, Pridefest, is making its return to Brown’s Island on Saturday, September 24. The festival was canceled in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The festival is said to be one of the largest outdoor events in the region with an estimated number of 40,000 people attending the event throughout the day.

“We are gearing up for what we expect will be the biggest and best Pridefest ever,” said Millner. “We are making huge investments in the event to give the Richmond community the experience they deserve and that they’ve missed for three years.”

Pridefest features national, regional and local entertainment on two stages and activities for youth and families alongside more than 100 craft, food, alcohol and non-profit vendors.

A full list of the Endless Summer of Pride events can be found here.

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