Charlotte Pride transitions large events in October and November to hybrid virtual/in-person

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: SEPTEMBER 20, 2021

Media Contact: Matt Comer, matt@charlottepride.org

Charlotte Pride transitions large events in October and November to hybrid virtual/in-person, including unique ‘Charlotte Pridestream’ on Saturday, Oct. 23

Parade, festival, and other large-scale in-person events transition to virtual, organizers cite pandemic safety precautions

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Charlotte Pride announced today that it will transition all large-scale, in-person events planned in October and November to a hybrid of virtual and smaller in-person events. The decision comes as the local area continues to face substantial community spread of the COVID-19 virus and its Delta variant. All previously planned events like the Charlotte Pride Parade, Pop-Up Pride Festival and concert event, and others will be transitioned into unique virtual broadcasts, with the ability of community members to gather in smaller-scale events and watch parties hosted by individuals and local establishments.

Charlotte Pride organizers had long held out hope that its in-person festival and parade could return to Uptown in 2021, initially designing their events to take place over a four-month period. In August, the organization postponed its events until October and asked community members to continue getting vaccinated and taking precautions to slow the spread of the virus. At the time, organizers said higher vaccination rates, lower positivity rates, and decreased community spread were essential for hosting any events in 2021.

Daniel Valdez (he/him), president of the Charlotte Pride board of directors, remarked: “We have not seen key pandemic indicators significantly improve in the four weeks since we announced event postponements. Despite our initial optimism and strong desire to see the return of our traditional festival and parade, the reality of the pandemic means we must take serious precautions to safeguard the health and well-being of our valuable and vulnerable community.”

Organizers are excited to announce their transition to innovative, hybrid virtual and in-person events that balance community health precautions with Charlotte Pride’s desire to see a city-wide celebration of Pride. These virtual and small-scale in-person events will give community members the option to stay safe at home with family or friends or gather in much smaller and safer activities which allow for masking and social distancing.

The final Charlotte Pride Season line-up of events includes:

Charlotte Pride Pop-Up Shops
Saturday, Oct. 16 // Select locations citywide
Join Charlotte Pride all afternoon and evening on Saturday, Oct. 16 at select locations across Charlotte for your opportunity to gather together with Pride. Pick up your Pride swag, limited edition 2021 Charlotte Pride T-shirts, and more as we make a toast to Pride in the Queen City. Pop-Up Shop locations and times will be announced soon online.

Charlotte Pride Scavenger Hunt
Saturday, Oct. 16-Sunday, Oct. 24 // Plaza Midwood
Explore Plaza Midwood and its bounty of LGBTQ-owned and -friendly businesses as you search for prizes and fun Charlotte Pride swag. Hosted on the Charlotte Pride Mobile App, the Charlotte Pride Scavenger Hunt is a unique way to explore one of the city’s queerest neighborhoods, meet friends, and support local businesses who give back. Coming soon to the Charlotte Pride Mobile App.

Charlotte Pride Drag Pageant
Friday, Oct. 22, 8-10 p.m. // Watch parties hosted citywide
Gather with your friends in an at-home watch party or head out to select community establishments across the city to tune in to this year’s Charlotte Pride Drag Pageant. After a year off in 2020, local drag artists will compete to be crowned and reign with their peers in the 2021 Charlotte Pride Drag Court. Want to host a watch party? Let us know and get watch party hosting tips online at charlottepride.org/watchparties/. Livestream links and more details will be announced soon.

Mask-Queerade Bar Crawl
Benefitting Time Out Youth & Charlotte Pride
Saturday, Oct. 23, 1 p.m. // South End, various locations
Join Time Out Youth and Charlotte Pride on Saturday, October 23rd as they join forces to produce a one-of-a-kind Mask-Queerade Bar Crawl! Tickets are $20 in advance, $25 day-of. Learn more and get tickets now at maskqueeradeclt.eventbrite.com.

The Charlotte Pridestream
Broadcast live from the iHeartRadio Charlotte Studios
Saturday, Oct. 23, 7-10 p.m. // Watch parties hosted citywide
The Charlotte Pridestream will bring you the best of local community entertainers, leaders, and speakers to empower and uplift the LGBTQ community in Charlotte and the Carolinas. Special live performances, tributes, and remarks. Join a watch party at select community establishments across the city or team up with friends to host your own at-home watch party! Want to host a watch party? Let us know and get watch party hosting tips online at charlottepride.org/watchparties/. A full entertainment line-up, livestream links, and more details will be announced soon.

Charlotte Pride Interfaith Service
Sunday, Oct. 24, 6 p.m. // Broadcast live from St. John’s Baptist Church
The annual Charlotte Pride Interfaith Service returns with remarks and special musical offerings, broadcast live from the sanctuary at St. John’s Baptist Church, featuring keynote speaker, the Rev. Clifford Matthews, Jr., Senior Pastor, St. Luke Missionary Baptist Church. Livestream links and more details to be announced soon.

Reel Out Charlotte
Friday, Nov. 5-Sunday, Nov. 6 // Camp North End / Virtual
Reel Out Charlotte, the Queen City’s Annual LGBTQ Film Festival, will host an in-person, outdoor, double-feature film screening and later that weekend unveil its annual short films screenings and competition in a live special broadcast online. More details will be announced soon.

In November, Charlotte Pride will host two additional events to round out its Charlotte Pride Season. The Charlotte Pride Job Fair and Community Conference will be hosted on Saturday, Nov. 13. The unique virtual event will bring together people seeking to learn more about the community and those actively seeking employment with community experts and local employers, as well as opportunities for those not seeking employment to engage with our broader LGBTQ community through workshops and community caucuses. On Sunday, Nov. 14, the Charlotte Pride Free Store will be hosted to provide essential needs including clothing to community members free of charge. More details will be announced soon.

All event details, livestream links, in-person event and watch party locations, and more will be announced at charlottepride.org.

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ABOUT CHARLOTTE PRIDE:
Charlotte Pride is the leader in LGBTQ visibility in Charlotte and the Carolinas. Charlotte Pride presents and collaborates on programs, projects, and activities, including the annual Charlotte Pride Festival and Parade, Charlotte Latinx Pride, Charlotte Trans Pride, Charlotte Women’s Pride, Charlotte Pride Interfaith Programs, and Reel Out Charlotte, The Queen City’s Annual LGBTQ Film Festival, among others. Since its founding in 2000, Charlotte Pride has expanded its year-round programming and partnerships to better connect community members with its mission, vision, and values. Charlotte Pride is now one of the largest LGBTQ Pride organizations in the American Southeast.