Medicine Hat pride week saved by national generosity

By Jessie Weisner
June 11, 2019 - 3:25pm Updated: June 11, 2019 - 7:07pm


MEDICINE HAT, AB -- Just 11 days after putting a plea out to the public for help, Project Rainbow Medicine Hat has exceeded its fundraising goal.

More then $3300 has been raised in order to host a local pride week.

“Some of us didn’t even think we were going to pull off reaching our goal and we would absolutely love to thank the community for proving us wrong,” says Caelan Hart, Project Rainbow organizer.

The closure of multiple organizations that typically funded pride, put the celebration in jeopardy.

Funding is needed to book venues, obtain permits, pay artists, to name a few.

Project Rainbow and Sun City Pride set up a gofundme page, asking Hatters for financial or merchandise contributions, and volunteers.

Support soon came from all over Canada, with LGBTQ advocate Mike Morrison and even k.d. lang sharing and donating to the cause.

“We definitely want to thank everybody who has donated,” says Hart. “There were huge contributions, small contributions so anybody who donated absolutely anything they had or even just shared the gofundme link or anything like that, it just contributed to kind of reaching the end goal.”

Things are looking up for Medicine Hat’s pride week. Project Rainbow has begun book to venues, artists, and planning events more extensively.

On September 8, pride week will kick off with a solidarity walk, ending with a picnic in the park.

“The solidarity walk is kind of going to be a return to the roots and the history and the culture around pride and kind of where it came from, this especially being the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots, that started the pride movement originally,” says Hart.

Also in the works, a Drag RoyalTea event.

“It’s going to be a high tea style party with drag hosts and hostesses,” says Hart.

At Medicine Hat’s public library, Project Rainbow hopes to host a film night showing LGBTQ films, which the current funding has allowed them to purchase screening rights for.

In addition, an LGBTQ funded game night.

“It’s going to be all ages, people can socialize, they can get together in a sensory sensitive space that might be better for people who can’t handle loud music,” says Hart.

And there’s more to come.

“Then we have a smattering of other events that haven’t quite been solidified yet so I’ll just leave those as a nice little surprise.”

Medicine Hats pride week is booked from September 8 to 14.

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