Celebrating Pride isn’t just for adults, it’s a family-friendly affair in Greensboro! This year, Greensboro Children’s Museum (GCM) is coordinating the KidZone at the 15th anniversary of the festival!
LGBT+ Pride, designated as a federally recognized month in June, celebrates, affirms, and increases visibility of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender people, and all individuals who identify as part of the community.
The city of Greensboro celebrates Pride in September, with family-friendly performances, vendors, activities, resources, and a plethora of fun in downtown.
After two years of COVID-related cancellation, from 2020-2021, the festival is back and better than ever before! At its last festival, Greensboro Pride drew its largest crowd, with an estimated 15,000-20,000 people. (Now, that makes this something you cannot miss!)
GCM previously worked with Pride for family-fun activities before the hiatus and now they are back at it too! The Museum’s mission reflects the goals of Greensboro Pride, making the collaboration a perfect fit.
As a non-profit and Museum, GCM promotes the inclusivity of children and families from all backgrounds in the city. The Museum views that all children and families benefit from hands-on learning experiences because they contribute to their growth and development through creation, play, outdoor exploration, and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) experiences.
“We are committed to being a safe environment for play-based learning where all families are actively welcomed. Affirming and reflecting individuals’ identities and families is an essential component of the wellbeing, growth, and development of kids in our community – a core tenet of our mission. GSO pride is an event that does just that through celebration and community building,” said Stephanie Ashton, the director of education and The Edible Schoolyard at GCM.
Having children attend the Pride festival is an important way to show them how to respect the rainbow of identities in their community.
“Bringing your children to Pride is a great way to show them that it’s okay to be different and be yourself. Pride can give them confidence and the knowledge that they are not alone, no matter what they look like, feel like, or who they love,” said Sarah Lanse, Greensboro Pride Secretary and Media Specialist
Over the last couple of years, the city of Greensboro has been known for promoting diversity. And the facts tell the story!
According to North Carolina Public Radio, on January 19, 2021, the city became one of five municipalities in the state to pass an ordinance that explicitly protects the LGBT+ community against discrimination based on sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity. Later the same year, the city received its first perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign’s annual Municipal Equality Index, which is a nationwide report examining the inclusivity of municipal laws, policies, and services for LGBT+ people.
The Museum agrees with Greensboro’s mission to continually improve its respect and positivity for diversity.
“Our presence there is really a small gesture of appreciation and support for the folks who work year-round to ensure that Greensboro continues to become a more welcoming and inclusive city for all families to live and play,” Ashton said.
For Lanse, there is something special about Pride that makes it fun for families, especially children.
“For my children, Pride is a chance to enjoy some glitz and glamor from drag queens and see all of the bright colors. The overarching lesson is that love is love, and Pride festivals like ours are a great way to share that with our youngest community members,” she said.
Amongst the other activities at the festival, the KidZone will host a photo booth, bubble machine, collaborative art project, and fairy hair installation! You’ll just have to attend to see the specifics!
The Greensboro Pride Festival is from 11a.m. – 6 p.m. on Sunday, September 18. The festival is located on South Elm Street between West Washington and West Lewis Streets in downtown Greensboro. Entry to the festival is free and open to the public.