Up & Coming Weekly

June 20, 2023

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

Issue link: http://www.epageflip.net/i/1501747

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Page 15 of 24

WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM JUNE 21 - 27, 2023 UCW 15 PrideFest brings inclusive celebration to Festival Park by HANNAH LEE PrideFest is an all-day family-friendly event that will feature music, vendors, drag shows and other entertainment. e festival is being hosted by Fayetteville PRIDE, a local LGBTQ+ nonprofit organization. Fayetteville PRIDE holds monthly support meet- ings for the community, a book club, a Youth Em- powerment Group, and works with local charities. eir mission is to instill pride, celebrate unity, and embrace diversity and inclusiveness in the LGBTQ+ community and allies. It provides a support net- work and educational advocacy group dedicated to increasing awareness and acceptance. Earlier this month, the Human Rights Campaign issued its first-ever national state of emergency for members of the LGBTQ+ community. e an- nouncement came after "an unprecedented wave of anti-LGBTQ+ legislation in 2023," according to the Human Rights Campaign. Fayetteville scored a 41 on the HRC's 2022 Munici- pal Equality Index. e index is an evaluation of the city's laws and policies, and an examination of how inclusive city services are of LGBTQ+ people. According to the HRC, some high-scoring cities may not feel truly welcoming for all LGBTQ+ people, and some low-scoring cities may feel more welcom- ing than their policies might reflect. "We want our community to know that even in an environment of increased anti-LGBTQ+ sentiment, Fayetteville PRIDE is working hard to instill pride, celebrate unity, and embrace diversity and inclu- siveness in our LGBTQ+ community. We are dedi- cated to increasing awareness and acceptance and providing a safe space for the community to come together, be themselves and feel loved," Katrinna Marsden, president of Fayetteville PRIDE, told Up & Coming Weekly. PrideFest is their biggest fundraising and commu- nity event for Fayetteville PRIDE. Last year's festival brought over 6,000 festival attendees, 100 vendors and 100 volunteers, according to Fayetteville PRIDE. is year's PrideFest will feature three hour-long drag performances, including a special hour of empowerment performances. However, the Raeford Flowers' PrideFest Stage will also be used for con- tests, giveaways and music for dancing. Approximately 100 different vendors will also be at the event, representing nonprofits, community organizations, businesses and hand-made crafters. ere will also be 10 food trucks on site. e community art project this year are take- home keychains that you can make yourself. ere will be other crafts available that visitors can make to show your PRIDE year-round. ere will also be a giant magnetic poetry wall to express yourself. Additions to this year's PrideFest include a teen's area and an expanded kid's area. e teen's area will be sponsored by Xscape Factor. e kid's area will have games, water features, entertainment and crafts sponsored by Array Magazine. e festival is free to attend. It is suggested you bring your own water bottles, sunblock and folding chairs. Pets, backpacks, coolers and weapons will not be allowed in Festival Park. e event will start at 12 p.m. and end at Festival Park at 6 p.m. If you still want to continue to cel- ebrate Pride into the night, there will be a free movie showing of "e Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert" at the Cameo Art House eatre at 8 p.m. Best costume or drag is encouraged. e movie is rated R. For more information, or to volunteer or donate, visit www.fayettevillepride.org/ SELLING A BUSINESS? BUYING A BUSINESS? Business Sales • Mergers & Acquisitions • Franchises akelsey@tworld.com Ashley Kelsey (910) 302-6447 www.transworldeast.com EVENT HANNAH LEE, Assistant Editor. COMMENTS? Editor@upandcom- ingweekly.com. 910-484-6200

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