U to celebrate queero-themed Pride Week

Language is a powerful tool that can be used to both isolate and unite. Even more impactful is the reclamation or creation of terminology to embody a notion or rallying cause.

“The word ‘queero’ was a joking combination of ‘queer heroes,’” Pride Week co-chair Taylor Anderson (she/her) laughed. “But the name stuck.” This practice is not uncommon to the LGBTQIA+ community, which is always consciously evolving their language with the intent to create a more inclusive ecosystem. In this spirit, the Pride Week Planning Committee selected “Queeroes: Reclaiming Hero” as this year’s theme.

“This was chosen because of its resonance with such a wide variety of people,” said Austin Hendrickson (he/him), Pride Week’s other co-chair. “It includes everyone with any queer identity, and we’re hoping that by ‘reclaiming’ the word hero, we can make queero something that the entire community can identify with and find pride in.”

For this year’s ​Pride Week at the U​, held Sept. 30-Oct. 4, the planning committee intention

University of Utah

ally worked to incorporate queeroes from both in and around the University of Utah community. Respected artists, LGBTQIA+ alumni, local politicians and proactive U of U students, staff and faculty will all play an active role in celebrating queeroes and educating attendees on the theme.

Amanda Beardall (she/her) has been diligently coordinating with the Alumni Association and Career & Professional Development Center for the ​Careeroes​ Pride event­—a networking session with LGBTQIA+ alumni and inclusive employers.

“Everyone who comes to our event is a queero,” said Beardall. “You are a queero simply for being employed as a queer and/or trans person. You can be a superqueero by being a role model, mentor and advocate for LGBTQIA+ people in your company and within your field.”

Additional queero-centric events include a “gaymer” night with remarks from ​Lenore Gilbert​, a lecture with activist ​Tourmaline​, ​a live performance by ​Rufio​ with ​Mel Soul & The Messenger​, and a town hall with Salt Lake City mayoral candidates ​Luz Escamilla​ and ​Erin Mendenhall.

“I’m grateful to see engagement in LGBTQIA+ issues from both parties vying to lead our community,” said Hendrickson. “The discussion with the two contenders will center around their platforms for LGBTQIA+ policy—an issue of critical importance to the queer community and all of its queeroes in and around Salt Lake.”

This star​ queero-studded week will conclude with an exciting superqueero/supervillain-themed drag show that will feature local performers Morgana Rhea, Edgar Alexa, Poison Grace and the Toxins, Sister Ivana Gnosis and Ava.

See the full list of Pride Week events here​ or at ​lgbt.utah.edu​.

Media Contacts

Morgan Aguilarcommunications specialist, University of Utah Communications
Office: 801-581-4638 Mobile: 208-661-5863

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