Muskoka Pride has announced that July 19th through 28th is the 2019 Muskoka Pride Festival.
The annual week of activities celebrates the Muskoka lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) community.
This year’s celebration is special, according to Muskoka Pride board member Shawn Forth, because it recognizes 50 years of LGBTQ+ visibility and progress.
“The year 1969 saw two significant events in LGBTQ+ activism. In New York City the Stonewall riots that started June 28th are seen as the spark of LGBTQ+ activism after decades of police raids and brutality,” he says. “In Canada on May 14, Bill C-150 partially decriminalized homosexuality and led to further legal protections.”
This year’s Festival theme is ‘Reflecting Pride.’ “We want participants to take time this year to reflect on the progress we have made in society in the last 50 years,” explains Forth, “and also to acknowledge that there remain many marginalized members of the LGBTQ+ community – particularly transgender and gender-diverse folks, and queer people of colour. We want our community to commit to working toward full inclusion.”
The Pride Festival week starts Friday July 19th with the annual Pride Launch Party in Huntsville at River Mill Park.
Over 300 people are expected to attend.
There will be free hot dogs and drinks, live music with Emily Bridle and her band, over 15 vendors and community booths, a music DJ, and many activities for the whole family.
Volunteers from the Huntsville Fire Department will once again be cooking food at the BBQ.
All municipalities in Muskoka will be raising the Rainbow Pride flag on Monday July 22nd.
To see a full schedule of events go to www.muskokapride.com or click “Events” on the Muskoka Pride Facebook Page.