About

The City of Middletown was proud to hold our first ever Middletown Pride event, which took place on Saturday, June 15, 2019. The City of Middletown, the Middlesex County Chamber of Commerce, and Wesleyan University partnered together to ensure that the inaugural event was a successful celebration of our diverse community and particularly the lives and contributions of our lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer/questioning residents.

The parade commenced at 2 p.m. in Middletown, Connecticut on Main Street at St. John’s Square and proceeded down Main Street to Union Street. A festival took place on the South Green immediately following the conclusion of the parade.

We were thrilled to welcome participants from local community groups, businesses, and individuals. Please contact the Middlesex County Chamber of Commerce for information on sponsoring the 2020 event, joining in the parade, being a merchandise and/or food vendor, or overseeing an informational booth.

The Chamber can be reached by phone at (860) 347-6924 or by email Haley Stafford at [email protected]

Pride Value Statement

We, the organizers of Middletown’s Pride Celebration and affiliated events acknowledge Pride first and foremost as a demonstration intended to benefit and empower marginalized members of the LGBTQ+ community. We believe Pride is more than just a party. We acknowledge that within our community, LGBTQ+ people still face monumental challenges. Therefore, we commit to creating a Pride event that is inclusive, diverse, intersectional, educational, sustainable, and as self-sufficient as possible.

Inclusivity

We affirm that community is built by sharing. Whenever possible, we will use our privilege and offer our resources to those who are marginalized or oppressed. We will seek out those who typically are not invited, or may not feel safe or welcome. We will greet them warmly, invite them to celebrate with us, and hold space for them.

Diversity

We affirm that diversity is strength. We will make efforts to include diverse people and perspectives, and will take note if people of specific races, colors, religions, genders, ages, ancestries, disability statuses, or sexual orientations are underrepresented in our events.

Intersectionality

We affirm that the LGBTQ+ community has intersecting identities which compound oppression and will consider those needs when planning events. This includes black people, indigenous people and people of color, disabled, deaf, and neuro-diverse communities, immigrant, and other marginalized and historically oppressed identities.

Willingness to Learn and Be Kind

We affirm the need to continue to educate ourselves. As a community, we still have so much to learn. It is never the responsibility of the oppressed to educate the ignorant. We will do our best to educate ourselves and to pass on what we have learned.

We affirm that kindness counts. We value “calling up” over “calling out”. When we make a mistake, we hope you’ll meet us as friends who could benefit from your wisdom.

Sustainability

We affirm that we must cooperate to make Pride last. We hope to have an annual event in perpetuity. We hope to endear ourselves to the Middletown community, and create value. Further, we will embrace sustainable environmental practices that respect our community.

Self-Sufficiency

We affirm our Pride as a community event. Aware of the legacy of pink-washing at Pride events, we endeavor to be financially self-sufficient. It is wonderful when corporations and businesses share our values, but sponsorship complicates the message of Pride and dilutes our authenticity. While visitors from all parts of the world are explicitly invited to participate at our events, we are, first and foremost, a celebration by Middletown, for Middletown. Likewise, we endeavor to use local contacts, vendors, organizations, etc. whenever possible, so that our celebration both represents and benefits our local community.