Broadening its support and creating a larger festival that reaches beyond Holland are two of the goals of the organizers of this year’s Holland Pride Festival on June 21 and 22.
Derek Hoehn and Sydney Sturm have taken over the helm of the annual festival, presented once again by Out On The Lakeshore LGBTQ community center. The duo said they have surprises in store for those who attend the two-day event.
“We want to create an event where all demographics feel included and to come out and support,” Hoehn said. “We plan to do this by having a variety of activities and some new entertainment. We also want the festival to be larger than ever and get more support from the surrounding areas outside of Holland.”
Like previous years, events will be held Friday night at the Park Theater and Saturday in Centennial Park. But Hoehn said they didn’t want the fun to stop there, so they added a Pub Crawl Saturday night with 10 local businesses in downtown Holland.
Purchasing a Pub Crawl punch card for $5 will get you one dollar off the first drink at each location. The punch cards are available during open hours at Out On The Lakeshore and will also be available during Holland Pride.
“It is a great way to get more of the community involved and the entire town lit up,” he said. “The other thing we were doing is reaching out to more vendors outside of Holland, for instance in Grand Rapids, and getting their support.”
Live entertainment will be featured Friday night at the Park Theater, including Funny Girls, Mimi Gonzalez and Delilah DeWylde. The entertainment starts at 7 p.m. and ends at 11 p.m.
“It should be a lot of fun,” noted Hoehn.
Saturday the entertainment will continue in Centennial Park with DJ Keller Shaw, Groove Party, and more. Vendor booths will be selling merchandise, food, or giving information about their group. Food vendors will include Hop Cat, Holland Police with Hudsonville ice cream, Uncommon Grounds, A&B BBQ and Kona Ice, Sturm said.
“I got involved with Pride as I am a strong advocate for those that are underserved as well as advocating and celebrating who I am as an individual,” Sturm said. “It is my passion to better serve this world and give my efforts, as I can be visible for those who cannot.”
In addition to all the fun, Hoehn said the festival also presents a time to reflect on all of those who fought and are still fighting for LGBTQ individuals today.
“This is a time to remember and thank them for all their efforts and celebrate how far things have come from years past,” Hoehn said.
Holland Pride 2019 Schedule:
Friday, June 21, at Park Theater
7 to 8 p.m.: Funny Girls
8 to 9 p.m.: Mimi Gonzalez
9:30 to 11 p.m.: Delilah DeWylde
Saturday, June 22, in Centennial Park
Noon to 1 p.m.: DJ Keller Shaw will start the event and also play during the breaks of other performances.
1 to 2 p.m.: Maciek the Magician
2 to 5 p.m.: Groove Party
5:30 to 9 p.m.: Pub Crawl
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