FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Fayetteville, Ark — Northwest Arkansas Equality (NWA Equality) has released the following statement out of concern for misinformation regarding the activities and parental access at the NWA Pride Youth Zone.
The 2022 NWA Pride Youth Zone had more than 5,000 attendees, including hundreds of parents/guardians accompanying their children, and we expect a similar turnout this year.
As in previous years, the Youth Zone will consist of separate areas for different age groups, including arts and crafts, storybook readings, a space for teens, and a resource fair of LGBTQ-supportive youth-focused organizations for parents/guardians to gain information.
Parents/guardians and children are welcome and encouraged to attend spaces together. Story readings will include community members, some in costume, reading age-appropriate books to children and their parents/guardians. Our Teen Zone is for teens only but has a designated parent/guardian area inside the Teen Zone. Entertainment in this teen space is similar to a high school dance, with DJs, musical acts, and youth-appropriate performers and content, including drag performers.
All vendors, volunteers, and chaperones for the Youth Zone are vetted through an internal process that includes background checks and training. Since 2010, NWA Equality has had a similar background check policy and certification requirements for volunteers and staff working with youth programs, including Child Abuse Prevention training.
NWA Pride's website will contain a more in-depth FAQ available to the public closer to the event, with answers to logistical questions and descriptions of performers, costumes, and books that families can expect.
The NWA Pride Youth Zone will be located inside the Fayetteville Town Center. The event will occur from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, June 24, in conjunction with the NWA Pride Festival and the 5 p.m. Parade on Dickson Street.
We thank the community for continuing to support NWA Equality and NWA Pride. We cannot do this work without you!
About Northwest Arkansas Equality
Northwest Arkansas Equality is a nonprofit organization that provides programming, education, and advocacy to serve, connect, and empower the LGBTQ community. The organization offers free HIV/STI testing services, peer support groups, resource navigation, and social and community outreach events. Each summer, NWA Equality produces Northwest Arkansas Pride, a multi-day LGBTQ advocacy celebration attracting 30,000 visitors to the region.