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New Hope council backs gay pride celebration -2004

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By Laura Downs, Staff Writer

Plans are in the works for New Hope’s first annual “Pride Fest,” a GLBT celebration weekend that would take place this fall.

The Gay Caucus members of the Bucks County Convention and Visitors Bureau formed a committee to initiate and organize plans for the proposed three-day celebration, which would, according to the written overview of the festival, “showcase all that New Hope has to offer the GLBT individuals and to recognize what the GLBT community has done for New Hope.”

New Hope Borough Council has been cited for its leadership in the areas of non-discrimination and recently received recognition from the Philadelphia chapter of the Human Rights Campaign.

The Pride Fest would be the first formalized GLBT weekend event held in New Hope.

The festival’s main organizer, Dan Brooks, presented a plan for the Pride Fest at the July 13 New Hope Borough Council meeting and received the support of the council.

The festival’s theme is providing a series of social gatherings, and an opportunity to learn more about the issues facing GLBT people throughout the country.

Activities will include, according to Brooks, a train ride, a barge ride, a cook-off and live music, as well as seminars on gay history, partnered financial planning and health issues.

Due to the short planning window, the organizing committee will attempt to launch the festival on a small scale for the first year, according to Brooks, with the intention of “developing it into one of the premier GLBT events in the region in years to come.”

Committee estimates say the weekend festival will bring an extra 500 visitors to New Hope.

The committee planning the festival is looking for sponsorship to help fund the events and the advertising.

Three-day festival passes will be sold in addition to tickets for individual events. The revenue from tickets would pay for costs of the festival, and would also go towards a donation to the HRC.

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