By Jim Bendoy
Chalk Campus Correspondent
The Metro Manila Pride March and Festival, A.K.A the day everyone in the LGBT community waited for to further preen their pride and love for one another, is just around the corner. On June 30, the most colorful and vivid annual festival is about to happen in Marikina City.
As we all #RiseUpTogether, here are the reasons why the 24th Metro Manila Pride March is the place to be!
1. Pride March is a collected effort coming from the whole community.
It's no secret that a big event such as this would require an even bigger budget. Thankfully, our community has been exceedingly generous and lots of people donated money just to make this march happen. The Metro Manila Pride still has ongoing efforts to raise funds, and part of this activity is the selling of shirts and other merchandises which will be available at the event itself. Cool rainbow shirts are definitely a must-have!
2. This year's march will be bigger in every aspect.
With a longer route, we're telling you, every sore you’ll feel on your feet for that 2 kilometers march will be worth it! The assembly for the event will start at Marikina Sports Center. For the march proper, your heels and sneakers will be put to the test as the route will go through the pavements of Sumulong Highway and Shoe Avenue. Then, the march will head back straight to the to the Sports Center where the festival will commence.
Every year, the participants of the march grows, loudly encouraging other members of the LGBTQIA+ community to join in. The first march happened in 1994 and were only composed of 60 people, but 24 years later, 7,718 strong shouted and battled to have their rights served last year. We can only imagine the increase this year!
3. Fab performers will be gracing the festival.
With a cool lineup of acts, we're pretty sure that this is a party that you shouldn't miss. Everybody wants a cool DJ, right? Well, Mike Lavet from Jungle Circuit Party and Nectar Nightclub will keep the night pumping. If you are a sucker for poetry, Louise Meets, Henri Igna, and Juan Miguel Sivero from Words Anonymous will deliver their spoken word pieces. Flying Ipis, The Metro Fantastic, Everyday People, John Saga, Presh, trans men dance group TFX, The Male Gaze, and many more artists will also light the stage.
To put the cherry on top, drag queens will be out with their bee-hive-like wigs and crazy-good make-up to make the festival even more splendid. After all, what is an LGBTQIA+ party without drag, right?
4. This isn't just a party, but rather a platform to inform.
One of the main highlights of the march this year is to educate the people not just about their rights, but also the responsibilities they need to uphold. Yes, having numerous allies is great, but everyone must be informed in order to work as one unit. The organizers want to focus more on shedding light and coming together for the indigenous and marginalized members of the community who need more of our care and support..
5. There will be an HIV testing booth.
Part of the advocacy of the march is to remind the community to watch over their health. An HIV testing booth will be up on the venue if ever there are some who want to be checked-up and tested.
This year’s march is something to look forward to as we meet new people, celebrate our identity, and spread awareness about the cause of our community. See you there, queens! Happy Pride!
For more info, visit http://mmpride.org/
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