Save the date -- June 5, 2022, in Asbury Park

NJ's Annual LGBTQ Pride Celebration

Jersey Pride, Inc., producers of NJ's Annual Statewide LGBTQ+ Pride Celebration, reluctantly announce that our 30th Annual LGBTQ+ Pride Celebration, held in Asbury Park, will be rescheduled from October 10th, 2021 to June 5, 2022.

This matter was not decided lightly. As the summer wound to a close, Jersey Pride was forced to confront the reality of a fall surge of the virus - courtesy of both the delta variant and a non-trivial percentage of the population eschewing vaccinations. We are now beginning to get some pushback and cancellations of those who might otherwise have participated in our event this October. Authoritative consultants raised the spectre that we would be creating a super-spreader event. Other prides - like Atlanta Pride - that had rescheduled their 2021 events to the fall have already cancelled.

We have not been planning in a vacuum. It was already clear that we were not going to be able to host the blow-out 30th year event that an anniversary year warranted, and that we should target a modest one this fall. We had also made a determination that we would follow the lead of outdoor event organizers like Live Nation and mandate vaccinations or negative COVID tests for any attendees. Even with these precautions, however, it was clear that a critical mass of participants was withdrawing from (or at least questioning) participation in Pride.

We reached the conclusion that we needed to look critically at whether we could safely hold the event this year. We explored the viability, and safety, of several different scenarios before concluding that we needed to cancel, and refocus our energy on producing NJ's 30th LGBTQ+ Pride Celebration in June, 2022. The decision is heartbreaking. We have heard from many in the community about how excited they are for the October event, and how much they are looking forward to it. Sadly, many who say that also opine that they may not be able to attend because of concerns about the virus."

The world has changed since we first decided to move forward with the October event. In June, the Governor lifted the state of emergency. Vaccines were widely available and as the vaccination rate rose, so too did confidence that we could resume our pre-COVID lives. Planning our event to coincide with NCOD made sense. But the perniciousness of the delta variant has changed people's calculations about what is safe, and what activities are essential. As we have seen with COVID - over and over - it can be impossible to predict with 100% confidence what the optimal path is. The best we can do is be responsive to the feedback we are hearing from the community, our volunteers, and our participants and make the decision that is right in the moment, We have a responsibility to the community to provide a safe event, and be leaders within our community.

We felt we had to consider whether we can responsibly produce the event without putting people at risk and with the trajectory COVID and the delta variant are on at this time, we are not confident that we can. It now seems ill-advised to continue planning to hold as large a gathering as our event could be - even one outdoors with as many COVID safeguards in place as we possibly could.

We know people are disappointed, frustrated, and mad. We are too. We look forward to the time when we can again host the largest NJ gathering of LGBTQ people celebrating pride in themselves and their community. See you in June, 2022.

What happened for Pride 2020? Check out the virtual celebration from June 7, 2020: Did you miss the live broadcast of Jersey Pride LIVE! earlier? View the video below for the June 7th United in Pride live event whenever you need a little Pride and sunshine in your life! GO JERSEY PRIDE!



United in Pride: Support Racial Justice in New Jersey

The Jersey Pride rainbow flag is flying at half mast

There is an empty seat at our organizing table. A Benn Meistrich-sized hole in our hearts. Long-time activist and JPI leader Benn Meistrich died early this morning. Although most JPI attendees may not have met Benn, they have nevertheless been the beneficiaries of his considerable contributions to NJ's Annual LGBTQ Pride Celebrations. Benn joined JPI in 1993 -- a short 28 years ago - and worked tirelessly on behalf of our mission each and every year since then. It is hard to imagine that when the next Pride event is held in Asbury Park he will be there only in memory, and in the hearts of those of us who will carry his work forward.

As those who know him remarked upon learning the news, "there are no words"; a turn of phrase that seems particularly poignant because Benn was such a wordsmith. He personified the phrase "the pen is mightier than the sword", using his words equally effectively in fighting for social justice and comforting friends and family. His submissions to our annual magazine, The Jersey Gaze, offered insightful, humorous reflections on LGBTQ life. He would know exactly what to say to everyone in the community grieving him right now.

It is hard to overstate Benn's contribution to NJ's progressive community. From his work at Planned Parenthood and NJLGC, to his start-up guidance of nascent LGBTQ non-profits, to his ongoing commitment to Jersey Pride and our mission, his legacy will long be felt in the Garden State.

Join us on Sunday, June 5, 2022, in Asbury Park, New Jersey. It is always a perfect day!

Check Facebook at JerseyPrideInc, JerseyPrideFest or select Event Details for updates about the Parade, Festival and Rally!

Contact JPI

info @ jerseypride.org

Jersey Pride, Inc.
PO Box 7973
Princeton, NJ 08543

Volunteer

Contact JPI to be part of the planning process
or to contribute during PRIDE Weekend

Sponsor Pride 2022

Contact Jersey Pride, Inc., to show your support

The best way to reach Jersey Pride, Inc., is with our email address: info @ jerseypride.org (no spaces)