Metro Weekly

Capital Pride joins over 34 Pride organizations for National LGBTQ+ Pride Stride Virtual Run

Proceeds from registration fee will benefit participating Pride nonprofit organizations

DC Front Runners Pride Run 5K – Photo: Facebook

The Capital Pride Alliance has joined 34 Pride organizations across the country to create the first-ever Pride Stride virtual 5-kilometer and 10-kilometer run.

In partnership with EnMotive and producers of the Allstate Hot Chocolate 15K/5K race series, the virtual run, sponsored by LA Pride, will commemorate National Coming Out Day, on Sunday, Oct. 11. All participants will receive a goodie bag featuring Pride-branded swag and Pride Stride-themed finishers’ medal, plus a fanny pack and more.

The event will be held virtually due to concerns about the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which led several LGBTQ organizations to cancel their Pride Month celebrations. It allows each participant to safely walk or run solo at their own leisure, without needing to worry about massive crowds, a time limit, and without having to follow an official route.

“Collectively, we’ve had to stay indoors during our Pride season thanks to the pandemic and follow safety guidelines, but we didn’t go away, LA Pride President Sharon-Franklin Brown said in a statement. “It’s important that we show we haven’t stopped making each and every member of our respective communities visible and matter. We’re leading the effort to get people moving and help them get out, figuratively and literally, across the country to safely show their pride in solidarity with this event.”

“This year, a majority of Pride organizations had to cancel or dramatically scale back their celebrations,” Steve Ginsburg, the president of EnMotive, said in a statement. “We are thrilled to partner with so many Pride chapters across the nation to support kindness, unity, courage, and strength through this virtual event helping bring the community together.”

While LA Pride is calling for individuals to sign up and participate, each of the participating organizations is promoting the Pride Stride among their own communities. A portion of each participant’s Pride Stride registration fee will benefit their local nonprofit Pride organization. 

“The COVID pandemic greatly impacted Pride celebrations around the world, and the heartland was not exempt,” Jennifer Carruthers, the president of Capital City Pride in Des Moines, Iowa said in a statement.

“To ensure the safety of our community, all in-person Pride activities were canceled and replaced with virtual events,” Carruthers continued. “When possible, we masked-up in solidarity with our Black and Brown brothers and sisters in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. The health and safety of our community is our top priority, and Pride Stride is an opportunity for us to come together safely to celebrate.”

See also: Burger King celebrates Pride by having mascot kiss Ronald McDonald

Locally, the Capital Pride Alliance and the DC Front Runners running club will be encouraging individuals to participate in both their annual DC Front Runners Pride Run 5K and the national virtual 5K/10K run.

Organizers will also be encouraging participants, especially members of the LGBTQ community, to register and promise to vote in this November’s presidential election, which will carry great consequences for members of the LGBTQ community, especially with regard to the makeup of the U.S. Supreme Court.

“These times require us to reflect and modify the actions that we take and the programming that we develop in our fight for full freedom and equality,” Ryan Bos, the executive director of the Capital Pride Alliance, said in a statement.

“We are thrilled to partner with other Pride organizations across the United States for the inaugural, nationwide virtual Pride Stride 5K/10K. This event will be part of our #StillWeVote campaign, a call to action for members of the LGBTQ+ community and our allies,” Bos continued. “Our votes are our voices, and we have too much at stake to sit by idly. Let us acknowledge that #StillWe must run and walk to the ballot box or mailbox for this November’s General Election!”

Registration for the Pride Stride Virtual Run is $40. To register, or for more information, visit www.pridestride.org or follow @pridestrideofficial on Facebook and Instagram.

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John Riley is the local news reporter for Metro Weekly. He can be reached at jriley@metroweekly.com

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