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Community members, local organizations planning first-ever Twin Ports Trans Pride festival

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DULUTH, MN -- A new festival is coming to Duluth this summer.

Called "Twin Ports Trans Pride," it's the first event of its kind in the state of Minnesota.

"It's been recently that we've felt like the community here has been supporting us quite a bit, and we feel like there's a need to center these voices here in Duluth," said co-planner, Evan Adams.

Separate from other LGBTQ festivals, this event gives visibility to the Northland's transgender community.

"Trans Pride is special in that it is centering those voices that we don't normally hear. It creates a safe, sober space - which we also don't have a lot of in our community - to celebrate our magic and our resilience," Adams said.

People with the organization Trans Plus are working on fundraising efforts.

They're also getting help from other local organizations, and Duluth city officials, like Mayor Emily Larson.

"They offered support through the planning, and helped us figure out the details and logistics of how to plan an event like this," co-planner Sean Hayes said.

Trans Pride is happening July 17 through 19. It's an all-day event at Gitchi-Ode' Akiing park. People of all ages and identities are invited.

"We've had trans, gender nonconforming, two-spirit folks reach out and say they want to play music, or perform spoken word, we also want to highlight trans artists," Hayes said.

Organizers say this event is a way to show that Duluth can - and should - be a safe space for everyone.

"We're just like everybody else, just existing in the community, and this is going to be a space to celebrate our existence, and that fact that we are here," Adams said.

Anyone is welcome to attend planning meetings for Trans Pride. They are held every other Friday at 6 p.m. at Men as Peacemakers in Duluth.

The next meeting is March 12.

Jenna Wells

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