Transgender Day of Remembrance is November 20 (Vigil, Nov 19th)

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Vigil to be held at Skidmore College Sunday, November 19 at 4pm (Fallstaff's). (See below for details)

About TDOR

The Transgender Day of Remembrance was set aside to memorialize those who were killed due to anti-transgender hatred or prejudice. The event is held in November to honor Rita Hester, whose murder on November 28th, 1998 kicked off the “Remembering Our Dead” web project and a San Francisco candlelight vigil in 1999. Rita Hester’s murder — like most anti-transgender murder cases — has yet to be solved.

Although not every person represented during the Day of Remembrance self-identified as transgender — that is, as a transsexual, crossdresser, or otherwise gender-variant — each was a victim of violence based on bias against transgender people.
We live in times more sensitive than ever to hatred based violence, especially since the events of September 11th. Yet even now, the deaths of those based on anti-transgender hatred or prejudice are largely ignored. Over the last decade, more than one person per month has died due to transgender-based hate or prejudice, regardless of any other factors in their lives. This trend shows no sign of abating.

The Transgender Day of Remembrance serves several purposes. It raises public awareness of hate crimes against transgender people, an action that current media doesn’t perform. Day of Remembrance publicly mourns and honors the lives of our brothers and sisters who might otherwise be forgotten. Through the vigil, we express love and respect for our people in the face of national indifference and hatred. Day of Remembrance reminds non-transgender people that we are their sons, daughters, parents, friends and lovers. Day of Remembrance gives our allies a chance to step forward with us and stand in vigil, memorializing those of us who’ve died by anti-transgender violence.

Note: This page was taken from

The Remembering our Dead Web Project and The Transgender Day of Remembrance are owned by Gwendolyn Ann Smith, All Rights Reserved


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Announcing: "Coming Out Month" Film Series


“Coming Out Month” film series.
Presbyterian—New England Congregational Church, 24 Circular St., Saratoga Springs.
Co-sponsored by Saratoga Pride.
Schedule (subject to change):
Oct 4 Milk (biopic about gay activist Harvey Milk)—2008; dir. Gus Van Sant; 2 hr 8 min; rated R—starring Sean Penn
Oct 11 Ma Vie En Rose (a child identifies as a “girlboy”)—1997; dir. Alain Berliner; 1 hr 20 min; rated R—French with English subtitles 

Oct 18 God Loves Uganda (documentary about evangelical American missionaries promoting homophobia)—2013; dir. Roger Ross Williams; 1 hr 23 min; unrated

Oct 25 For the Bible Tells Me So (documentary about growing up and coming out gay in 5 different Christian families)--  2007; dir. Daniel Karslake; 1 hr 35 min; unrated
Show time 6:30 PM.  Each screening followed by panel discussion.  More details to follow.
For more information contact: Terry Diggory;; 518-587-3537.

Saratoga Pride 2017!

Pride Weekend was well represented by Saratoga Pride. Friday, June 9th was the Saratoga Pride Festival at High Rock Park, with over 150 LGBTQ, allies, family and friends enjoying the festivities! 

June 10th, for the first time, Saratoga Pride was represented in the Saratoga Flag Day Parade!

Saratoga Pride marched on Sunday, June 11th in Albany's Capital Pride Parade.


Sunday, June 4th: Guided, hour-long walk in Saratoga State Park @ noon, meet at the Warming Hut by the Rt 9 SPAC entrance (Note this is a change in location). Dogs welcome!

Monday, June 5th: LGBTQ Open Mic at Caffe Lena @ 7:30-9pm! Show us your talents! $3 cover charge.

Friday, June 9th: Join us for the annual Saratoga Pride Celebration! We will start with a small festival at High Rock Park, featuring music, visits from community leaders, and information tables from local organizations. Then, we will pause for a group photo before taking our annual stroll down Broadway to a local venue for appetizers and beverages. (There will be a small cover charge at the restaurant to cover the cost of food.)

Saturday, June 10th: Saratoga Flag Day Parade on Broadway! Details of parade start and times will follow. Please email to sign up. Allies and friends welcome!

Sunday, June 11th: Capital Region Pride Center annual Pride celebration in Washington Park, Albany. Join Saratoga Pride in the parade! More details to follow.

Tuesday, June 13th: Sing-a-Long to Grease! Bow Tie Theater, 6:00pm social hour 7:00pm movie at the Bow Tie Cinema on Railroad Ave. $5 donation.

Announcing the Saratoga Pride 2017 Festival for LGBTQ and Allies!

Where: High Rock Park, Saratoga Springs (location of the Farmer’s Market) and more...

When: Friday, June 9th, 5:30pm – 9:00pm

We are very excited to be expanding the Saratoga Pride event this year to include a small festival gathering at High Rock Park.  This will include some information tables from local LGBTQ and allied organizations; brief visits from community leaders; and hopefully some live music and food options. As in other years, we will pause for a group photo prior to taking a stroll from High Rock Park, along Broadway to a local venue for appetizers and beverages, starting at about 7:15pm. There will be a small charge at the restaurant to cover the cost of food, and there will be a cash bar. This is an all ages event! (ID will be required to purchase alcoholic beverages.) Watch for more details!

Volunteers, Organizations and Musicians Wanted!

If you are a representative of a LGBTQ or allied organization that would like to have an information table at the event, please contact Saratoga Pride. We are also seeking musicians who would like to donate their time and talent to perform a brief set at the festival.  Space for tables and time for performers is limited so please let us know as soon as possible. Finally, we need some volunteers for setup and breakdown, and other jobs.  Send a note to to participate in any of these ways!

LGBTQ ‘National Pride March’ on Washington Planned for June 11

By Andy Towle (from Towleroad January 26, 2017)

Organizers of the D.C. Pride Festival are planning to collaborate with a gay activist from Brooklyn, New York who is organizing a National Pride March to take place on June 11.

Write the organizers:

Additional details about the March will follow, but we are working in conjunction with the Capital Pride Alliance, in Washington, DC to incorporate the March into the 2017 Celebration of Pride in the Nation’s Capital. We want to build off the momentum the strong women in the US and around the world started on January 21st. They set the tone with their leadership and it is our intention as a community to follow their lead and play our part. This will be an ALL inclusive and peaceful event!

We urge all supporters, friends, and family to descend on DC for the Pride 2017 weekend (June 8-11th) to make sure our voices are heard. If you cannot attend the March in Washington, DC, we urge you to reach out to your local Pride organizations to assist in creating solidarity through your existing Pride events. Let’s make this truly a “National Pride March” that spreads from coast to coast and shows solidarity through our Pride movement.

There is no word yet on how inclusive this march will be in terms of gender identity, disability, and race, or collaboration with groups like Black Lives Matter and immigration organizations. These surely need to be top of mind for organizers.

Says David Bruinooge, 42, the Brooklyn, N.Y., resident who created the National Pride March page, to the Washington Blade:

“I was watching the events unfold on TV and I was very proud and inspired by all the women, the strong women in our country who were kind of taking this to the street and getting their voices heard,” he told the Washington Blade. “And in the back of my mind as an openly gay man I thought the gay community should be doing something like this to follow up on the momentum,” he said.

He said he intentionally chose June 11 for the march because it’s the same day that D.C.’s Capital Pride Festival is scheduled to be held on Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W. near the U.S. Capitol. Bruinooge said his thought was the march would start in the morning and end at the site of the Pride festival.

Ryan Bos, executive director of the Capital Pride Alliance, which organizes the D.C. Pride events, including the Pride Parade set to take place on June 10, said he has spoken with Bruinooge and expects that Capital Pride officials will collaborate with the march organizers so the march and the D.C. Pride events will complement each othe

Uniting Communities Against the Politics of Hate: A Public Forum

Uniting Communities Against the Politics of Hate: A Public Forum
February 12, 2017, 4:00-6:00 PM
Presbyterian—New England Congregational Church, 24 Circular St., Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
PNECC office:

There will be a panel discussion with representatives of the African-American community, Capital District Coalition Against Islamophobia, Capital District SURJ (Showing Up For Racial Justice), the Jewish community, the Latino immigrant community, and the Pride Center of the Capital Region/GLSEN. PNECC pastor Rev. Kate Forer will moderate. Attendees will learn skills for diffusing and healing hate situations, as well as building relationships. The event is free and open to all!

Upcoming Action Opportunities - Open Letter from Joyce Elliott

Dear Friends -- I hope you will join Cindy and me at these upcoming events:


1. The Albany Inaugurate Resistance March on Saturday January 21 from 4 to 5:30 PM. This will be the biggest, most unified local action on the day after the presidential inauguration. This is a sister event to the national march in Washington D.C. We stand together in support of the many vulnerable and intersecting communities who have been targeted by the incoming administration. There will be workshops at 12:30 and 2 PM on community organizing at 155 Washington Ave (1199/SEIU Building). The march begins at 4 PM at 155 Washington Ave and ends at the West Capital Park at the NYS Capitol with a rally and speak out. For more information, see Inaugurate Resistance on Facebook. 


FYI, a group called Saratoga Unites has been formed to bring together residents and organizations from our region to take action to stop racism, bigotry and inequality. An initial meeting held on Sunday the 14th at the Parting Glass drew over 200 people. A variety of break out groups were formed. An LGBT group, convened by Reverend Joy Block, will meet again on Sunday January 22 at 4:30 PM, location to be announced. For more information, join the Saratoga Unites group on Facebook. 


2. The Winter Party for Planned Parenthood Mohawk Hudson (PPMH) on Saturday January 28 from 6:30 to 9:30 PM at the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame at 191 Union Ave in Saratoga. This fundraiser is an elegant cocktail party just when we need one. Open bar, music by The Sheiks of Third Street, silent auction, wine raffle, and delicious, hearty hors d'oeuvres by our dear friend Kim Klopstock of the Lily and the Rose. The cost is $75 for return guests and $50 for first-timers. Please register online at   


3.  Family Planning Advocates (FPA) Annual Day of Action on Monday, January 30 at the Empire State Plaza Convention Center in Albany. Beginning at 10 AM, we will rally with over 1,000 supporters. Speakers will include Cecile Richards, President and CEO of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, possibly Governor Andrew Cuomo, NYS legislators and community leaders. The afternoon will feature workshops on community organizing and lobbying at the legislature. If you register in advance, a box lunch and a vibrant pink scarf are included. Register at    


The two Planned Parenthood events support reproductive justice and health care for youth, women, men, the LGBTQQ community, and others who typically have no other access to the health care -- of any kind -- they need.  


As Chair ofthe Board for Planned Parenthood Mohawk Hudson, I can tell you the communities we serve are the same communities we march for on the 21st. The need for what we do is greater than ever, as is the threat to shut us down. Please stand with us all and with Planned Parenthood!  


My very best wishes to you in 2017 -- Joyce

Cindy Swadba interview on Channel 10 ABC concerning hate crimes in Saratoga

It’s not uncommon to see graffiti along spring run trail in Saratoga but this week a swastika and found and even more troubling, it was the second one found in just two weeks here in Saratoga Springs.

“We’re better than that and we know better than that and I’m fearful,” Cindy Swadba, volunteer at Saratoga Pride, said.  Cindy was interviewed by Channel 10 ABC News in an episode that aired on Nov. 29.  The episode discussed the rise in hate crimes since the recent presidential election, and featured Cindy Swadba and Mayor Yepsin.  See the full article here.

2015 Saratoga Pride Week photos

Check out our Pride photo gallery!


Pride Banners were back on Broadway in Saratoga Springs again for the month of June 2015! Many thanks to our sponsors who made this possible!