Around the country, there are fairs for everything under the sun: arts, athletics, food and even Renaissance culture — but surprisingly, it’s rare to see one dedicated to the LGBTQ community. Since 2009, Portland’s Gay Fair on the Square (Sept. 16) has been one of the only such events in the country, and this year, the city will again welcome dozens of gay and gay-friendly groups into its living room, Pioneer Courthouse Square.
This event invites people to gather, share passions and showcase talents. Timed to precede National Coming Out Day (Oct. 11), the fair is a perfect starting point for the just-out and those considering coming out. Groups ranging from athletic teams and art communities to HIV support groups and gay youth groups will be on hand, spreading the word about their organizations. The fair is a great way to get involved with local groups like Cascade AIDS Project and the Q Center.
But it isn’t all business — performances by the the Portland Gay Men’s Chorus and others create a festive atmosphere worthy of a visit, regardless of your sexual orientation. Last year, the event featured more than 60 groups and hundreds of attendees, showing there’s space for everyone in Portland’s living room.