One EXTRA day to be GAY!

Dear Pride Family,

Happy Leap Day! Thanks to math and science we’ve been given the gift of time: one extra day to be gay! 

I’ve been reflecting on the idea of being “too extra.” This critique is often levied against queer people, particularly related to our expression of gender. As if passing as cis and straight is something to aspire to, when really it’s just choosing safety over authenticity. 

On the other hand, queer people can also feel the pressure to be more extra. We think we need to accentuate the individual performance of our queerness to prove that we belong in the community.

This tension between feeling too much and still not enough is, in the words of Edward James Olmos as Abraham Quintanilla, exhausting

I love Pride season because in those nine days (from She Fest through the Festival) we get to explore and play with those expressions AND be celebrated for it – with the support of community. We get the taste of freedom and liberation that is withheld from us the other 357 days of the year. Seeing queer people take up space is one of the reasons why I continue to do this work.

Pride is about taking up space. Whether it’s the over 300,000 people that attend the Parade, or the 21-acre Festival site, our community takes up literal, physical space. And, there is nothing our community cannot achieve when we come together in joy to oppose prejudice. 

Pride is also about taking up intangible space. Sharing our stories reaches hearts and minds, affecting change. We use the fact that all eyes are on the global LGBTQ+ community in June to call attention to issues in our movement. And because San Diego is extra, we extend our celebrations into July

Take this extra day as permission to BE extra gay, trans, Black, brown, or whoever you are. To be extra YOU. 

But also know that you are enough. No matter what. 

With Pride,

Joe Fejeran (he/him) 
Community Programs Coordinator


About San Diego Pride

San Diego Pride raises funds primarily through festival ticket and beverage sales, and through sponsorships, and exhibitor fees. These funds support San Diego Pride’s community philanthropy which has distributed more than $2.5 million in advancement of its mission to foster pride, equality, and respect for all lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities locally, nationally, and globally.