Indy Pride’s executive director fills us in on what to expect and how to observe the city’s week-long celebration of the LGBTQ community.
Late last June, Chris Handberg started as the first-ever executive director for Indy Pride. The 2018 event, which the organization began planning in August, will be the first time he’s led a festival in this role. After nearly a year spent developing programs and building community partnerships, Chris expects as many as 60,000 people to show up at Historic Military Park for the Indy Pride Festival on Saturday, June 9. We spoke with the man in charge of this year’s party about what to expect during Pride and the days leading up to the celebration.
There’s more to Pride than the main show on June 9. What else are you looking forward to this week?
All of our events are fantastic, but I want to highlight three. The first is the 35th anniversary of our community picnic, which will be this Sunday at noon in Garfield Park. The first Pride gathering in 1982 was held at the now-closed Essex Hotel. The next year, they moved to a park and had a picnic. Those people were brave. It was a time of great hostility, when it wasn’t cool to be gay, and people were mocked by their family and friends. We honor them by continuing the community picnic tradition.
Then on Monday at 6 p.m., we’ll have the first Deaf Pride. Central Indiana has a large community of people who are both LGBTQ and deaf or hearing-impaired, so they’re gathering to celebrate their lives and their queerness.
We also have #TransGlam on Wednesday night at The Tube Factory. This will be a great party that’s similar to a prom, and all ages are welcome.