*Queer is an umbrella term for sexualities and gender presentations that do not conform to heterosexual and cisgender norms. Originally synonymous with "strange" or "peculiar", queer has been used as a pejorative term for same-sex attraction for well over a century now. However, since at least the 1980s, queer-identified activists, have reclaimed the word as a politically charged, inclusive term for the LGBTQAI+ communities.
*Queering takes the above definition and turns it into an action. We define queering as expanding access and inclusion, in this case to our parks which serve the public, in all diverse and changing formations.
Queer Family BBQ
Sunday, June 30th, 11:00-4:00pm
Ping Tom Memorial Park, 1700 S. Wentworth Ave
Free and open to all ages
Queer Family BBQ is a joyful celebration of LGBTQAI+ culture activating park space through food, music, art making, games, and more!
Queer Pool Party
Saturday, August 24th, 1:00-4:00pm
Washington Park Refectory, 5531 S. Russell Drive
Free and open to youth ages 13-17
The Queer Pool Party is a joyful celebration of LGBTQAI+ youth culture activating water, health, and wellness. The party is open to 13-17 year-olds of all gender expressions. The pool and park are wheelchair accessible and will feature DJs, food, games, and more!
New Date: Sunday, November 17th, 6:00-10:00pm
Columbus Park Refectory, 5701 W. Jackson Blvd.
Free and open to LGBTQAI+ youth and allies ages 13-24+
The MasQUEERade Ball is a joyful celebration of LGBTQAI+ youth culture. The event will feature dancing, vogue-style competitions and prizes, hair and makeup stations, fashion shows, photo booths, and more! Youth ages 13-24, as well as adult chaperones and volunteers, are welcome to be seen, heard, and affirmed.
WAYS TO SUPPORT
Donations are very much welcome and support our queer youth leaders who will be organizing, planning, and hosting these events.
In-kind donations are tax-deductible. Please contact Irina Zadov at irina.zadov @chicagoparkdistrict.com for in-kind contributions of support.
Suggested Sponsorship Levels:
$50 - support Queering the Parks youth street team
$75 - CTA passes for one Queer Youth Planning Committee meeting
$150 - LGBTQAI+ mental health resources for one event
$250 - support an honorarium for one Queer Youth Committee Member
$350 - support an honorarium for one Queer Youth Committee Leader
$500 - lunches for Queer Youth Committee Meetings
$750 - support one DJ, one performer, and one documentarian for one event
$1,050 - support honorarium for the entire Queer Youth Leadership Team
$2,500 - support peer evaluation + wrap party event
$5,000 - LGBTQAI+ inclusion and safety training for all Chicago Park District youth + staff