The Ann Arbor District Library has several events planned in celebration of LGBTQ Pride Month. From virtual kids’ events to teen book talks to a Drag Variety Hour, the month is packed with plenty of Pride options.
“My coworkers and I felt it was important for the library to celebrate Pride in such a visible way for several reasons,” said Marisa Huston, Ann Arbor District Library technician. “It’s our month, too. We are everywhere and want to see LGBTQ programming and representation mainstreamed into all our programming and collections.
“This is suicide prevention,” Huston elaborated. “There are many vulnerable kids out there who are figuring out their identities. The Trevor Project reported that LGB youth are almost five times as likely to have attempted suicide compared to heterosexual youth and 40 percent of transgender adults reported having made a suicide attempt. If our programming — not just our Pride programming, but all of our queer programming — helps just one person feel more comfortable, accepted, understood and loved, then I will consider this a success.”
The Pride programming includes a lot for kids, starting with Hooray for Pride: LGBTQ Children’s Books. This will be a virtual event airing on AADL.TV on Thursday, June 17. The show will offer recommendations for children’s books that feature LGBTQ characters and themes that you can enjoy all year long.
Teen Pride Book Talks will take place June 16, 23 and 30 and will continue after June. There will also be a special week of Pride-themed story times from June 21-25. And, capping it all off, is the Drag Variety Hour featuring Jadein Black, Hershae Chocolatae, Ani Briated and Austin Black. The show will feature performances, music and dance, along with a story and a short cooking lesson. (Briated will demonstrate how to make her famous cheese enchiladas.)
And because you’re never too old to learn a little queer history, the AADL is also featuring 30 Days of Pride, a variety of daily LGBTQ programming on their AADL.TV channel.
“We chose the 30 Days of Pride lineup to be a mix of family-friendly ‘fun’ things like clay figures and also more serious quotes related to the struggle for acceptance and human rights,” said Huston. “We wanted to represent as many different communities under the Pride flag as possible, while centering and giving voice to some of the most marginalized groups including people who are Black, Indigenous, trans, non-binary, and/or two-spirit, particularly after our yearlong Black Lives Matter book discussion series and Stop Asian Hate programming. We wanted to create a space that at least attempted to capture some of the magic of the queer community.”
For more information, visit aadl.org/30daysofpride.