Capital Pride Invites Input

Organizers of DC's Pride Parade and Festival reaching out to community groups to expand planning committee

Capital Pride organizers from the Whitman-Walker Clinic are asking nearly every GLBT not-for-profit organization in metropolitan Washington to take part in planning this year’s week of events, including the parade and festival, by joining the annual event’s planning committee, as well as contributing financially.

Organizers have invited representatives from various community groups to attend a meeting in the conference room of the clinic’s main building, 1407 S St. NW, at 6:30 p.m., on Tuesday, Jan. 9 to discuss possible involvement in the annual celebration.

”It’s a response to what we had been hearing from the community,” says Kim Mills, spokesperson for the Whitman-Walker Clinic, ”which is to make Capital Pride a more inclusive event for the entire community.”

While various organizations have made appearances at past Pride events, Mills says organizers are now asking them to join the planning committee, the size of which will be determined after Tuesday’s meeting. Those who join the committee will help ”make the decisions and recommendations around events, entertainment, awards, and a lot of what goes into Pride,” says Mills.

”The clinic could never have done it without the planning committee,” she continues. ”The difference going forward is that we’re formally asking all of the organizations in our area to actually join the committee and be a part of planning the event.”

The committee will also discuss various options that could help increase revenue at 2007’s Capital Pride, including the possibility of selling merchandise or charging admission to the festival and creating and selling an all-events pass.

The Whitman-Walker Clinic has already committed $100,000 toward this year’s events. Mills says additional contributions to that sum will help ensure a ”bigger and better” Capital Pride.

This year’s Capital Pride Festival is scheduled for the week of June 4 through 10. For more information on Tuesday’s meeting, call ReGina Newkirk, Director of Development, at 202-797-3500.

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