Pride; It’s Not Over.
Although Denver’s PrideFest was nearly 10 days ago, we’re still exhilarated from the hustle and bustle of it all! Pride Shabbat at the JCC, led by Rabbi Caryn Aviv of Judaism Your Way, had more than 200 people in attendance and, as Rabbi Caryn said, “the ruach (spirit) was palpable.”
The Jewish Community booth at PrideFest was heavily trafficked by friends both new and old, and the hand-made lanyards were a serious hit with attendees. Whether folks stopped by for an introduction, to express gratitude at there being a Jewish presence, or simply for some sunscreen, the Jewish community showed up in great numbers, and style, to support LGBTQIA+ friends and family.
One individual said this to one volunteer: “I grew up and am a part of the frum (ultra-religious) community and never knew there was a Jewish queer presence. I’ve been in a loving relationship with my wife, and this makes me so happy to see a space for the LGBTQIA folks like us.”
Another attendee knew right away where to go when in need: “I have been looking for sunscreen all over the festival. You can’t even buy any! But I thought…you know who would have sunscreen for me…. the Jewish Community. Can I borrow some of your sunscreen?”
(We, of course, had sunscreen. And, of course, we shared.)
Whether it was hosting the Kabbalat Shabbat service, or leading the hora during the Pride Parade, the Jewish community was out and Proud for Denver’s PrideFest. But mere words can’t possibly describe the true beauty and magic of what occurred during the weekend. Feast your eyes on the faces of Denver Pride.
The thing about Pride is that, although we dedicate the month of June to celebrating, Pride is a year-round event. Over the next 11 months, let’s continue to bolster these sentiments of acceptance, respect, inclusion, and boundless love, and watch our beautiful Denver community flourish. Here’s to all the seasons of Pride.