Provo Pride Festival…Not What You Would Expect


Bailey Morris

Bright colored flags weaved through the sky as music blasted and families with little children darted up and down the sidewalks. Old men sat on the grass with their grandkids, mothers gathered and talked in bunches, and college students ran booths displaying shiny pins and pamphlets.

The Provo Pride Festival was held last Saturday, Sept. 30, and was a celebration on Center Street recognizing the LGBTQ+ community. To some, the festival represents may create feelings of discomfort, either because it represents something unknown or because their views differ from those who would likely participate in or support the parade. With varying ideas of the LGBTQ+ community, it’s important to be informed and understand different perspectives.

One of the many booths at the festival was started by active Latter Day Saint mothers with LGBTQ+ children. Their group is called Mama Dragons.

“It was started a few years ago by Mormon mothers with LGBTQ kids, and decided that being a mama bear isn’t enough. We are mama dragons because we’re a lot more fierce than mama bears, and if you mess with our kids then we are going to breathe fire to protect them. But mostly we’re just here to love and support our kids and give out hugs and it’s just all about loving and being kind,” anonymous member said.

At a nearby stand, a board full of encouraging notes was open to the public to leave or take a note. Papers full of sayings such as ‘you are loved’ and ‘stay kind’ filled the board for both straight and LGBTQ+ alike as reminders that while different, we are the same. So what is kindness? What determines who we are kind to? And what parent doesn’t love their child no matter the circumstance? Kindness in universal.

Timpview sophomore Angela Levi explained that the Pride Festival was more than just an event on a calendar.

Angela said,“To me, there’s lots of different people who have different takes on homosexuality, like ‘oh it’s a problem’ or ‘it’s a defect’, all sorts of stuff. But then I feel like Pride is when people take it as, ‘this is who I am. This is my identity and I am proud to be who I am’. And so I think that’s so great, because then you’re standing up for who you are, rather than saying no this isn’t me. But it is [you] so you’re proud of it.”

Angela went on to explain how the Provo Festival is less about sexuality and more about support and family, she said people were encouraged to bring their children. To her, this made the Provo Pride Festival unique and special.

One of the key takeaways from this festival is that love is about consideration and respect. Knowledge is the first step to love. Ignorance breaks friendships, causing people to say things that they don’t mean. The Provo Pride Festival—geared more towards family and acceptance—helped bring the idea of learning about others before you speak, and of loving everyone despite circumstances. The message was to be proud of who you are, no matter who you are.