The National LGBT Pride Month festivities are held in June as a way to honor and remember the 1969 Stonewall riots in Manhattan. Here in Mid-Missouri, with most of the college students away on summer break, June is a sleepy month. In order to share the love with as many as possible, the Mid-Missouri PrideFest will take place on August 25 at Rose Music Hall in Downtown Columbia, MO. This year, the library is taking Bookmobile, Jr. to join in on the fun — so be sure to stop by during this free, family-friendly event!
The Mid-Missouri PrideFest “is an annual, family-friendly celebration of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning and ally community in Mid-Missouri.” You can find out more information about the MidMO PrideFest at www.midmopride.org.
The library has a ton of great resources for those interested in reading about LGTBQ issues and stories. We also have digital services with great music playlists and films.
If fiction is more your thing, you should check out this staff-created list: Recent LGBTQ+ Fiction. I’ll provide a couple of highlights, but highly recommend you check out the full list! In the novel “Marrow Island” by Alexis M. Smith “an earthquake near Marrow Island kills Lucie’s father and sets off a series of environmental and chemical catastrophes. A couple decades later, Lucie joins a environmental remediation colony and reconnects with her friend Kate. Smith gives us some compelling eco-fiction with little a love, damage and healing.” Chinelo Okparanta’s debut novel “Under the Udala Trees” tells about “11-year-old Ijeoma, displaced from her home because of the 1968 war between Biafra and Nigeria, falls in love with another displaced girl, Amina. What’s it like for a young, queer girl to mature into womanhood in a country at war and in which homosexuality is criminal? Okparanta attempts an answer.”
Created together with the Matters of Social Justice Committee’s Journey Toward Inclusive Excellence, a library book list with nonfiction titles is Sexual Orientation & Gender Identity. This list includes titles that survey the history of LGBTQ rights, such as “Stonewall: Breaking Out in the Fight for Gay Rights,” and books on compassionate parenting like “Raising Ryland: Our Story of Parenting A Transgender Child With No Strings Attached.” Whether you’re searching for a mirror of your own story, or want to read about people who have had different experiences than your own, these books will surely help.
Music-wise, I’m happy to report that the library has multiple ways to get your jam on. The free-with-your-library-card music streaming service Freegal has a Pride Month playlist that you can listen to here. (Remember, you can even download and keep five songs per week using Freegal!) Hoopla also has a collection of LGBT musicians and supporters that you can check out here.
All of these books and music and films are great, but I think most of the fun is going to be happening at PrideFest. Hope to see you there!