Chicago's Black Pride events merge as United Black Pride

Tue. April 23, 2013 8:16 AM by Press Release

Chicago, IL - The merger will combine Chicago Windy City Black Pride, Rocks Coordinating Committee, and Chicago Black Pride.

Collectively, the three organizations produced over 35 years of Black Pride Week activities in Chicago. Today it is the largest such celebration among lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders of African Americans in the Midwest, drawing thousands of Black LGBT's from the Chicagoland area and across the U.S.

The celebration originally began in 1977 at the Belmont Rocks as un-official post-Pride Parade event for Black LGBT's hosted by the Rocks Coordinating Committee, and was later moved further north to Montrose Harbor. Chicago Windy City Black LGBT-SGL Pride launched their first Black Pride celebration in 1999. Then in 2008, the Chicago Black Pride organization was founded. The three organizations will now dissolve as a result of the merger, and UBP will continue to honor the legacy of Black Pride Week and the history of the Black LGBT experience in Chicago.

Jesse Hinton, who formerly led Chicago Windy City Black Pride, will serve as president of the newly formed United Black Pride organization. Hinton said, "The annual Black Pride tradition represents a unique opportunity when we can come together as a family to celebrate our unique experience and appreciate the diversity of our community. We are excited to join forces as a single, collective body to honor our tradition and embrace a new future."

Ariq Cabbler, who was the lead representative of the Rocks Coordinating Committee (RCC), said, "The merger will allow for us to maximize limited resources and expand preventative services to reduce health disparities among African-American LGBTQ community members."

Nikki Sarver, from the Windy City Black Pride organization, stated, "We are excited about working together in one organization and embarking upon a new direction through unity."

UBP is already developing upcoming major events. A gala, "The Colors are Red & Pink," will be held April 27 in recognition of HIV/AIDS and breast cancer awareness in the Black LGBT community. The colors red and pink also serve to acknowledge the new organization's strong support in the fight for Illinois marriage equality with the creation of the "The Tied Together" emblem. Tied Together- Equal Rights= Human Rights=Civil Rights.

The annual Chicago Black Pride will continue to engage the community in a variety of activities from health literacy, public policy, cultural tradition, and performing arts through workshops and social events. The historic kick off will take place June 30 at Montrose Harbor immediately following the Chicago Pride Parade, and will continue throughout the week with workshops, parties, and other social events. Black Pride week will conclude with the traditional all-day festival of fun, food, a vendor expo, and live entertainment on Sunday, July 7.



From news release