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San Diego Pride canceled for 2020

San Diego Pride cancelled for 2020.
Photo credit:
SDPIX

San Diego Pride has made the difficult decision to officially cancel its outdoor festivities this year due to the coronavirus.

The celebration was scheduled to take place on July 17-19, but new directives from Governor Newsom to reduce crowd gatherings this summer were paramount in Pride organizer's decision to drop the celebration for 2020. 

San Diego Pride Director Fernando López said that protecting the well-being of the public is their number one priority. 

"We have been saying as an organization for about a month now that Pride would not continue unless it’s safe and healthy to do so but on Tuesday we received guidance from the governor that for the foreseeable future mass gatherings of any kind would not be possible,” they told the San Diego Union-Tribune.

With revenue and income loss already affecting the area because of COVID-19, the news is especially concerning as Pride is the largest civic event in San Diego. Another huge draw for tourism is San Diego Comic-Con which is more than likely going to be canceled, but there is no official word from that organization yet. 

Pride has been a San Diego tradition for over four decades and recently broke records as far as attendance and fundraising. Last year $2.5 million was raised, of that $340,000 was dispersed to 65 LGBTQ-serving organizations. 

“It’s the single biggest fundraiser of the year, and we have the potential to not earn those millions of dollars that fund year-round San Diego Pride’s education and advocacy program,” Lopez said. “If we are unable to raise revenue, we can’t issue those grants this year so for the smaller nonprofits it’s a devastating impact. Some of them house our trans community, some do care around HIV and AIDS, others help LGBTQ youth.”

Although the live event has been retired this year, a virtual collective called “Global Pride” will happen on June 27.

This digital endeavor will bring together San Diego Pride and other community Pride events affected by the pandemic from around the world in a cooperative effort. It will showcase a variety of artists scheduled to perform before the social distancing orders.