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Today marks the beginning of Pride Month 2017, a time set aside for our LGBT community to celebrate who we are out loud. What have you done toy to make you feel proud?
We’ve rounded-up 30 things for you to do — one for each day of the month — to raise our community’s visibility, to acknowledge the strides we’ve made and to make yourself feel good about who we are.
Here are 30 ways to celebrate our community and yourself during Pride Month 2017:
1. Volunteer at an LGBT nonprofit.
Spend part of your day off contributing some time to a local LGBT charity, like a youth homeless shelter or wellness center. Just taking some time to find out what these organizations do and how you can help in the future is a big step toward getting yourself more involved in the community. Now that’s something of which you can really feel proud.
2. Go to a gay beach.
There’s no better time than June to join your brothers and sisters in the sun for some fun. Whether you’re at The Pines in Fire Island, Sydney’s North Bondi or Tel Aviv’s Hilton Beach, each one guarantees a good time. Just don’t forget the sunscreen — or your beach bag!
3. Use Instagram’s new #Pride2017 stickers.
Instagram is marking Pride Month 2017 with new features, including stickers for Instagram Stories and a rainbow brush editing tool. The six #Pride2017 stickers were created by LGBTQ artists from the Instagram community.
4. Finally watch When We Rise.
You didn’t catch it live when it aired on ABC in April? Take the time this month to watch the Dustin Lance Black series that chronicles the history of our LGBT movement.
5. Go on a date with someone not your type.
We usually end up dating a cookie-cutter version of the same person over and over again. Step outside your comfort zone and go on a date with someone not your type. Usually dinner with a twink? Tonight, take out a bear for some grub! Only into daddies? Try seeing eye-to-eye with someone your own age. Who knows? You may learn something new about yourself in the process.
6. Binge-watch Will & Grace.
Before the groundbreaking show returns this fall, marathon some of the series’ best episodes and remind yourself why you fell in love with Will, Grace, Jack — and of course Karen — years ago.
7. Enjoy some Big Gay Ice Cream.
8. Tip a local drag queen a big bill.
When was the last time you tipped a queen more than $1? Drag queens work hard for our community, especially those local girls. Show them you’re proud with a Jackson, Grant or Franklin!
9. Watch Tyler Oakley’s new series on YouTube.
The out online star has launched a YouTube series entitled Chosen Family that highlights and celebrates different aspects of LGBTQ culture and history throughout the month of June. The series looks really compelling, with each episode featuring a different theme, like resistance, expression, heartbreak and compassion.
10. Donate to an LGBT charity.
You spent some time at an LGBT charity, now spend some of your money there, too. Think local: starting with your nearby LGBT community or wellness center is a great place to begin.
11. Grab some pride apparel.
12. Remember Pulse.
This month’s one-year anniversary of the massacre at Pulse nightclub isn’t going to be easy on our community. On Monday, June 12, gather your friends for a potluck so you’re together with loved ones. Reflect as a chosen family, then get out to your local watering hole to show the world we’re not going to live in fear.
13. Text an old friend.
Sometimes because of busy schedules we fall out of contact with someone we love. Take the time to reconnect; just sending a note like “Thinking of you” can really brighten up a day. And it could be all you need to rekindle an old friendship gone stale.
14. Write a letter to your best friend.
They’re the Miranda to your Carrie, the Blanche to your Dorothy. But even though they’re your best friend, when was the last time you detailed your love for them with the written word? Use this month as an opportunity to explain to your bestie just how much they mean to you and why you’re proud to call them friend.
15. Download a new gay social networking app.
Sometimes you forget there are different apps out there that can introduce you to a whole new side of the community right in your own neighborhood. If you’re always on Grindr, check out Hornet. Not only a new fling could be waiting but also a new friend.
16. Learn some LGBT history.
Understanding where we come from is the only way to get us to where we need to be. The podcast Making Gay History is chock-full of information that will educate you on our community’s trials and tribulations, making you the gayest history buff in the room.
17. Engage with someone older.
We all have a lot to learn from one another, so make June a month for meaningful conversations about identity across generational bounds. Either through an app like Hornet or at a bar, message an older LGBT community member and invite them out for coffee. You can also check out SAGE — an organization dedicated to improving the lives of LGBT seniors — for more information.
18. Engage with someone younger.
As with the stories you heard during your coffee date with Joe, now it’s your turn to share wisdom with someone younger than you. Paying a visit to your high school or college’s LGBT student group is a great way to reconnect with queer youth.
19. Get tested.
Make sure to set aside time this June to take care of yourself. Get to a clinic, get tested and encourage your friends to do the same. Knowing your HIV and STI status is essential to keeping you and your partners safe, no matter your gender identity or sexuality.
20. Shop at an LGBT small business.
Gay bars count, but you’re probably already supporting those businesses every Thirsty Thursday and Sunday Funday. So find out about the local LGBT bookstore or gay-owned restaurant where the queens brunch and drop some coins there.
21. Flip sexual positions.
In our opinion, the best part of being gay is that we get to flip-flop between sexual positions. Most guys don’t do this often, so take a chance and try the bottom bunk for once. Or, if that’s what you’re used to, get on top and enjoy the view.
22. Read a book by a queer author.
Reading is fundamental! Take time out from reading the queens on your kickball team and actually pick up an up-and-coming queer author’s work. Some of our favorites include Boy Erased: A Memoir, Desert Boys, The Gilded Razor and Femme.
23. Head to your local lesbian bar.
Lesbian bars have it tough. Many of them close because our community doesn’t support them enough. So tonight, step out with a friend or two and order a drink with the girls tonight.
24. Buy a jockstrap.
25. Listen to Spotify’s Pride playlist.
Spotify curates specific playlists during June for the LGBT community. To commemorate Pride month last year, they launched #PressPlayForPride as its own dedicated category. Featuring playlists and personal commentary from members of our community including Adam Lambert, Alan Cumming, Rufus Wainwright, Tegan and Sara, Troye Sivan and Years & Years, the streaming service featured a bit of everyone’s taste in music.
26. Join a parade or march.
This month, given the current administration, our Pride celebrations have taken on new political meaning. So whether you’re joining a parade to sissy that walk or raising your voice in resistance at a rally or march, do it loud and do it proud, baby! The streets are all ours.
27. Stay connected on social media.
Follow Pride hashtags on Instagram and Twitter to see what the rest of the world is up to all month long. It’s great to see Pride celebrations thrive all over the world.
28. Spend a day off social media.
Sure, social media is great for connecting us with one another. But it can also disconnect us from real-life experiences. So on a Saturday or Sunday (or whenever your day off may be) wake up and don’t check your social media apps from the time you press that snooze button. You’ll find the day longer and more calming when you’re not constantly scrolling to see what everyone else is up to.
29. Contact your congressman.
Staying on top of your local congressman and state senators is an important step in showing your pride. If they’re doing a great job advocating for LGBT equality, then let them know you see their hard work. If they aren’t, explain to them how their decisions affect you adversely.
30. Get in drag.
You think because you’ve seen every episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race you’re an expert, but when was the last time you actually got up in the gig yourself? It’s not as easy as it looks, so maybe stepping out in lashes and heels will help you understand just how hard it can be to present as a fierce drag queen. Ask your local drag celebrity to help you transform for the night, and then sissy that walk all over town, kitty girl. Paint the town with your pride.
Featured image by fabioderby via iStock