Point Pride returns on June 12
By Taylor Hale
STEVENS POINT – Stevens Point’s LGBTQ+ pride festival is back this year, but with bigger ambitions and new management.
Retitled as “Point Pride” and slated for June 12, this year’s event will be hosted by the Point Pride Committee, spearheaded By Ryan Goszkowicz.
“Last year when we canceled the event and went online was kind of a blessing in disguise,” Goszkowicz said. “Because it gave us a full year to plan this out and really put it together.”
This year’s Point Pride event will run from noon to 9 p.m., with activities spread throughout the day.
Goszkowicz said that his peers on the event board including Martha Bawara, Reggie Eaton, and his brother Rob Goszkowicz, have helped organize an amazing afternoon filled with family fun, information, and much more.
This year’s schedule includes A kickoff and family-friendly drag story hour at noon; “So you Think you can Drag’’ amateurs only drag show at 1:30 p.m.; music by Falling Flat at 3 p.m.; Queens of Club Oz drag show at 4 p.m.; Cori Croga Aerial Arts at 4 p.m.: Courageous Hearts at 6 p.m.; and the Bandshell Bombshells drag show at 7 p.m. The show features over 30 performers throughout the day, most of which are from the LGBTQ+ community.
The first Stevens Point Pride was held in 2019, where Goszkowicz performed as widely-known drag queen Sissy LaLa. The event was hosted by Central Wisconsin Equality, a now-defunct group. When he heard that the event didn’t have an organizer, he quickly picked up the slack.
“What it is now is definitely not what it was before,” Goszkowicz. “When it started, it was just testing the idea. It has formed into so much more over the last few years.”
There will be free HIV testing on-site and games and giveaways throughout the day.
Goszkowicz sees the event as something that could grow into the next Riverfront Rendezvous. He hopes to continue growing the reputation of Point Pride in hopes of making it a state-wide attraction for people of all sexual orientations.
“I feel that Stevens Point is the perfect place to have events like this happen. It’s right on the water, we are in our community, this is the place where it needs to be. There are always gay pride events that happen in bigger cities, but gay people are just everywhere. And I feel it is my duty as someone confident in their sexuality to bring an event like this closer to home.”