Celebrated throughout June, the month when the Stonewall Riots marked a turning point in the gay rights movement, Pride uplifts the voices of LGBTQ+ people and supports their rights. Throughout Northern Virginia, there are many ways to affirm the equality, diversity, and importance of the LGBTQ+ community this month. Here are a few:
Discover Inclusive Businesses
The official Commonwealth of Virginia tourism website lists self-identified LGBTQ+ friendly lodging, dining, shopping and attractions throughout the Commonwealth. In Eastern Prince William, make a whole day of fun and support inclusive LGBTQ+ friendly business shopping at Occoquan’s Hitchcock Paper Company boutique followed by catching a flick at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, and finishing with a family meal to-go from Bar-J Chili Parlor. Have guests coming to town? Encourage them to stay at the Homewood Suites in Woodbridge, also on the list. (Own an inclusive business? Learn how to add your listing to the guide!)
In addition, you can purchase Virginia is for Lovers Pride merchandise to show your Pride and allyship.
Learn & Teach History
Learn about LGBTQ+ history in Virginia. You can start by reading The Virginia Department of Historic Resources’ LQBTQ Persons of Note in Virginia, taking Roanoke’s LGBTQ History Walking Tour, or reading and listening with your children to LGBTQ+ friendly books available through hoopla at Prince William County libraries.
Attend Pride Events
Even with concerns around the pandemic, celebrations abound throughout Pride month!
- Kick off the month with Equality Prince William’s Happy Hour at Preston’s Pub in Manassas Park on June 2.
- Catch the unique Pridemobile Parade at sites throughout Washington DC on June 12. Organized by the Capitol Pride Alliance, the parade features an official trolley followed by decorated cars traveling to iconic DC locations.
- Equality Loudon’s Pride Picnic & Festival on June 13 is describe as fun, family-friendly, and for friends of all ages.
- Growing Pride at the Garden in Alexandria is a family-friendly makers’ festival, featuring artisans, local food trucks, live music and crafts for kids. Event takes place inside the event space and on the patio.
- If you are up for a day trip, check out this list of Pride events throughout Virginia.
Not ready or able to venture out? Attend an online event, such as Equality Virginia’s Lunch & Learn educational series, covering such topics as protecting marital equality and services for older LGBTQ adults, the US Holocaust Museum’s “Pride Month: Defying Nazi Persecution” on June 28, or GLSEN’s TQA (trans, queer, ally) Pride: Youth & Educator Summit on June 9.