Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Tuscaloosa residents celebrate LGBTQ+ History Month at Druid City Pride

Emma Brandenburg
Festival attendees leave behind words of encouragement to members of the LGBTQ+ community on Oct. 1 at Druid City Pride Festival.

Druid City Pride hosted its eighth annual festival of the same name on Sunday, honoring both Tuscaloosa’s queer community and the commencement of LGBTQ+ History Month. The festival capped off a weeklong schedule of celebrations, which consisted of a family skate night, drag queen bingo and more.  

According to the organization’s website, the festival was brought to life in 2016 following the success of the Pride events in the city in years prior.  

“There were not any outlets at all prior to Druid City Pride coming on the scene,” Russell Howard, UA LGBTQ Alumni Association president, said. “Druid City Pride has been phenomenal for the queer community of West Alabama — Tuscaloosa specifically. It is one of those things they continue to grow on, and they are doing a fantastic job at it.” 

The event showcased talent within the Tuscaloosa community, with performances from students in the UA dance programs, drag queen Genesis, and the festival’s headliner, country singer Chris Housman. 

Howard said his favorite thing about DCP is not only the performers but the audience. 

“It is a community event, and you see that across all ages, sexualities and genders,” Howard said. “It truly is a beautiful thing to see everybody come out and be a part of this wonderful experience, whether they are onstage or off.”  

In addition to the festival’s performances and large crowds, DCP also hosted several vendors: queer-owned small businesses, various restaurants in downtown Tuscaloosa, and sponsored booths from companies like T-Mobile and Target.  

The event would not have been possible without help from the city, DCP President Margaret Christian said. “The city has helped us with social media opportunities in addition to letting us use Government Plaza.” 

The city’s support extended past support of the festival. Christian said that over the weekend, a parking deck’s lighting display was devoted to Druid City Pride, shifting between various colors. 

“Tuscaloosa has done well in showing up to DCP and lending both an ear and a helping hand to the community to show their support,” Christian said. 

DCP also invited several UA organizations to take part in the event, providing both LGBTQ+ and allied students with information surrounding campus resources and diversity, equity and inclusion programs. 

“We are here at Pride every year,” UA Safe Zone Director Lizzie Smith said. “We work with a lot of organizations to help put on these events and bring what we work for at UA out into the community, and in turn, they bring the wonderful things they do back to our students.” 

Smith said DCP means a lot to the students at Alabama. 

“When a lot of folks get here, whether they are out-of-state or in-state students, sometimes this is the first Pride event they ever get to come to, and the only one they ever feel safe coming to,” Smith said. 

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