While most part of the world celebrates Pride Month on the month of October every year, Pride Month in America falls in June.
2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, which was the foundation of the Gay Liberation Movement in the United States.
Stonewall Inn is a historical place in New York City. It was a bar and also a refuge for the LGBTQ community in NYC.
While the Stonewall Inn was a place where the members of the LGBTQIA community could socialize, it wasn’t very safe.
This was due to the regular police inspection and harassment. Police could arrest anyone not wearing at least three articles of gender-appropriate clothing.
Dozens of bars were raided by the police every night where they would arrest people just for being gay. They would also harass them and clear out the bars all the time.
But on June 28, 1969, when police arrested employees as well as customers from the Stonewall Inn, the people have had enough.
Instead of retreating, they started throwing bottles and screaming and shouting outside the bar.
It was transgender activist Marsha P. Johnson who threw the first brick at the police.
Thus started the Stonewall Riots that lasted for five days.
A month after the riot, New York City held it’s first Pride Rally. And began the Gay Liberation movement.
Ever since then, America celebrates Pride Month every year in June.
Here is how Americans are celebrating Pride Month in 2019.
Brands Supporting the Pride Month.
June is the month for a lot of brands in America to sell their products like crazy. Most brands come up with products and lines targeted especially to the LGBTQIA community.
Adidas has come out with its “Love Unites” apparel to celebrate Pride Month. And they’re making a $250,000 donation to the Trevor Project (world’s largest suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for the LGBTQIA community).
Beer company Bud Light is celebrating Pride Month by revamping their iconic blue aluminum bottle to a rainbow. And for every bottle sold, they’ll donate $1 to GLAAD.
The shoe company Converse has launched an array of shoes and clothes in the rainbow colors to celebrate the month of June.
Disney has also come out with Pride-themed merch and they’re donating 10% of all the proceeds to GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network).
Fossil, a famous designer watch brand has come up with a special Pride Watch Case and rainbow Pride Watch Band. They’re featured RuPaul’s Drag Race album Alyssa Edwards in their ad campaign.
And they’re donating 100% of the earnings to the Hetrick-Martin Institute, an LGBTQ youth service agency.
Other companies like Harry’s and IKEA are also donating 100% of its proceedings for the benefit of the LGBTQIA community.
Parades, Festivals, and Ceremonies.
There are different marches and parades happening around the country to celebrate Pride Month.
Some have already been held like the ‘Queer|Art|Pride’ (June 3-13) – The nonprofit organization by partnering with Abrons Arts Center organized it’s third annual summer showcase of work by more than 40 artists.
The showcase included workshops, readings, and performances of different LGBTQIA community members.
“The First Fridays: Black LGBTQ World Pride Edition” on June 7.
Brooklyn also hosted it’s very own pride day on June 8. It began with a 5K morning run. There were other activities like a street fair with arts and crafts, local vendors, and stage performances.
On June 21 Twilight Pride is being held on Staten Island at the Alice Austen House. This is an LGBT historic site named after photographer Alice Austen.
On 23rd June Bronx is hosting the Bronx World Pride Rally, March, and Festival. The goal is to celebrate the diversity of the Bronx.
The World Pride Opening Ceremony is happening on June 26 in Barclays Center, Brooklyn. It is a benefit concert featuring artists like Chaka Khan, Whoopi Goldberg, Billy Porter, and Ciara.
New York City is hosting NYC Pride March on June 30. It is one of the largest civil rights demonstrations in the whole world.
The march will commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots.
Films, Documentaries, and Book Launches.
The Museum of the City of New York held the Portraits of Pride on June 6. screening films like Stormé: The Lady of the Jewel Box, and Happy Birthday, Marsha!,.
On June 14, Film Forum in Manhattan did a special screening of Paris is Burning. It is an influential documentary that explores the Harlem underground ballroom scene of the 1980s.
The Lavender Scare is premiering on PBS on June 18. The documentary showcases the shocking story of the federal government’s unrelenting campaign to identify and fire the employees who are potentially homosexual.
A Queer History of the United States For Young People, a book by Michael Bronski was released on June 11. The book aims to educate the youth about how the LGBTQIA community has been contributing to American and American culture for over 400 years.
On June 21, Portrait of an Artist, a docudrama by David Hockney is screening at Metrograph, Manhattan.
On the same day, a 1984 documentary Before Stonewall is screening at the Quad Cinema, Manhattan. The documentary showcases the development of the LGBT community even before the Stonewall Riots.
On June 18, HBO is airing the documentary Wig. It is a documentary about Wigstock, an iconic annual drag festival initiated by Lady Bunny.
Even YouTube is stepping up and celebrating Pride Month. The video platform will do so by screening different documentaries throughout the month of June.
Other documentaries being screened are We Came to Sweat (June 24, Brooklyn Historical Society), and The Queen (June 28, IFC Center, Manhattan).
Music Festivals and Album Launches.
The most iconic album being launched on pride month is by one of the biggest LGBTQIA supporter Madonna.
Madonna released her fourteenth studio album Madame X on June 14.
From June 21-28 the Rose Theatre at Jazz at Lincoln Center, Manhattan is will be showing various queer-themed opera. Few of them are Angels in America, Brokeback Mountain, and Stonewall.
Other concerts and music festivals happening are “Manning the Canon: Songs of Gay Life” (June 25, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Community Center, Manhattan), LadyLand (June 28-30, Brooklyn Mirage, Brooklyn).
So, if you’re anywhere around these areas, feel free to join and help people celebrate Pride Month with love and pride. Happy Pride Month 2019.