Patrick Murphy | Northern Star
DeKALB – The Egyptian Theatre, 135 N. Second St., will host a free Pride event in partnership with several local nonprofit organizations on June 18 to celebrate Pride Month. Doors open at 6 p.m. for a march around downtown and then the Egyptian Theatre will show “Love, Simon” at 7 p.m. followed by a panel-led discussion.
“We found different ways to bring rainbows and all different LGBTQIA+ flags into our lobby,” said Jeanine Holcomb, Egyptian Theatre’s communications and marketing director. “We want it to be an inviting space where you want anyone to feel welcome to come as they are. The fact that this event is free just made it that much more accessible.”
“Love, Simon” was the chosen movie for the event because it is uplifting and fun for all ages that discusses the problems queer people face, said Lynnea Erickson Laskowski, Safe Passage’s communication and prevention services director.
“We’re still putting together the panelists, but we wanted to make sure there’s representation from different races, ages, genders and sexual orientations to have a great discussion after the film,” Holcomb said.
There will be artwork on display by queer artists from the community in the Egyptian Theatre lobby, Erickson Laskowski said.
“We want pride to be a place where people can celebrate and feel safe, and have a reminder that you deserve to feel whole and happy and joyful and thriving,” Erickson Laskowski said. “We really wanted to create that kind of environment.”
Safe Passage, a domestic violence and sexual assault agency, has been a part of DeKalb’s Pride events for the past three years. This is the first time it will be hosted at the Egyptian Theatre.
Safe Passage, DeKalb Public Library, Queer-Oriented Rural Resource Network, Prism NIU and NIU Center for the Study of Women, Gender and Sexuality partnered for the event.
The Egyptian Theatre asks that guests who are not fully vaccinated wear a mask to follow guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Hand sanitizer will be available for everyone.