Chicago Reader Announces Inaugural Pride Block Party
The Chicago Reader celebrates the city's rich and diverse 50 years of honoring LGBTQ+ community legacy at its first-ever all-day, all-ages block party in partnership with Marz Community Brewing Sunday, June 23, 1-9 p.m, presented by Nue Vodka.
Featuring an array of artists, organizations, and small businesses, the Reader's Inaugural Pride Block Party aims to be an intergenerational, cross-community effort to honor the people doing the work in Chicago to amplify LGBTQ+ people and stories, as well as pay homage to Chicago's queer history and the icons who made it possible.
Twenty-five percent of the day's ticket sales will be donated to Chicago organizations whose missions include supporting LGBTQ communities: Brave Space Alliance, Affinity Community Services and Chicago Black Gay Men's Caucus. Association of Latinxs Motivating Action, Youth Empowerment Performance Project, Equality Illinois and The Legacy Project. Tickets are $10 donation and are available in advance and at the door.
"As a media outlet that prides itself as being by Chicago, for Chicago, we are excited to support and showcase an array of the city's queer and trans talent, as well as pay homage to 50 years of LGBTQ legacy," Tracy Baim, publisher of the Reader, said. "Investing in the local LGBTQ economy is a great way we can truly show our pride."
This inaugural daytime turn up features programming that highlights music and culture threaded through LGBTQ+ generations. Start the day with family-friendly programming, get your heart rate up with dance lessons and DJ sets including salsa, step and house, give snaps to Young Chicago Authors (YCA) Queeriosity slam poets, get your drag history on with Chicago's Drag Mom Lucy Stoole and a cast of intergenerational queens, bop to the beats of Chicago's emerging queer hip hop prodigies, and close it all out with a musical dedication to LGBTQ+ icon Janet Jackson performed by the all-women and trans band Femme Slash with surprise special guests.
Throughout the day, peruse LGBTQ+ historical archives from both The Legacy Project and Tracy Baim's collection from more than 35 years of LGBTQ+ community documentation. Inside the brewery, hear from Chicago queer thought leaders of today and yesteryear with intergenerational panel conversations.
Marz Community Brewing and other local vendors will have food for sale all day, as well as a bar hosted by the beloved Maria's Packaged Goods. The bar, presented by Nue Vodka, will feature custom Maria's cocktails, Marz brews, wine and a variety of spirit-free options including Marz kombucha, matte, coffee and CBD beverages and Red Bull varieties. Tokens to be used for food and drink will sell for $3 each and can be purchased with cash or card.
Access details: Bathrooms will welcome all genders. Sign language interpreters will be on site for all panel conversations inside Marz. This is an all-ages event and those 21 and over wishing to drink alcohol must present a valid ID and wear a wristband to be served.
The graphic design for the Reader Pride event is by internationally known LGBTQ artist Sam Kirk, a Chicagoan who consistently has given back to her communities, including on the South Side of the city. The art depicts iconography from Chicago and its south and west sides in particular, and the women in the foreground are inspired by Chicago lesbian trailblazers and activists the late Vernita Gray and journalis Tracy Baim. Sales from a special Sam Kirk-designed Marz beer can will benefit LGBTQ south side organizations Brave Space Alliance, Affinity Community Services and Chicago Black Gay Men's Caucus.
This Reader event was made possible with the support of: Nue Vodka, Marz Community Brewing, Steppenwolf Theatre's production of Ms. Blakk for President, Old Town School of Folk Music, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sprint, Vocalo radio, Young Chicago Authors and Windy City Times.
For tickets, see https://www.eventbrite.com/e/chicago-reader-pride-block-party-tickets-62367009404.