Knoxville Pridefest 2015 spreads the love
In East Tennessee, Pride isn’t a day, it’s a season!
With events such as Greek Out With Pride and Drag Queen Bartending at Fatties already occurring in early May, the build up to the festival is intense in Knoxville. And the fun doesn’t end with Knoxville PrideFest 2015, which will be held at World’s Fair Park on Saturday, June 20: the Eat Out With Pride series continues until the end of July (at least).
Knoxville PrideFest President Ben Byers could barely contain his enthusiasm for this year’s festivities: “This is the 10th Anniversary for Knoxville PrideFest and we're very excited about the program we've put together this year. Leading up to the week of the festival we've got a broad selection of activities: the fashion show, The Knoxville Gay Men's Chorus is performing their summer show "An American Choral Story : Imagine" at the Bijou, our annual Art OUT auction, a family picnic, and lots of Eat OUT events at local restaurants. The week of the festival Kathy Griffin will be at the Tennessee Theater, and we're having our first ever pre-pride party leading into the parade and the festival on Saturday the 20th!”
Knoxville’s impressive lineup, capped off by the inimitable Joan Osborne, is a major draw. This is important, as Byers sees it, to draw people in and engage allies and outsiders, and in so doing advance the cause of LGBT people deep in one of the state’s most conservative metro areas. “PrideFest is … an opportunity to reach out to the larger community in our area. By bringing in nationally recognized headliners as well as local up and comers, and hosting the event in the middle of our popular downtown, we’re providing an opportunity for the city to see us, meet us, and (most importantly) get to know us as people and neighbors who have many of the same ambitions, troubles, and joys as everyone else. We believe that the best way to advance equality and tolerance of differences is through interaction and familiarity.”
Many of the events organized by PrideFest this year are family friendly and all are open to the public. For more information about Knoxville PrideFest 2015, and for a full list of events, visit www.knoxvillepridefest.org.
Partial List of Events:
7TH ANNUAL NEXT 2 NOTHING SWIMWEAR / UNDERWEAR SHOW
Friday, June 5, 2015, 8:30 p.m. – 12:30 a.m., The International
KGMC PRESENTS AN AMERICAN CHORAL STORY: IMAGINE
Saturday, June 6, 2015, 8:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m., The Bijou
PRIDE INTERFAITH SERVICE
Sunday, June 7, 2015, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m., Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church
Sunday, June 14, 2015, 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m., Tyson Park
KATHY GRIFFIN LIVE!
Wednesday, June 17, 2015, 8:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m., Tennessee Theatre
Saturday, June 20, 2015, 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m., Gay Street
Saturday, June 20, 2015, 1:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., World's Fair Park - Performance Lawn
photo via Knoxville Pride