Jews March For Pride Bay Area 2009 Recap, Lessons Learned & Highlights


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The LGBT Alliance organized 800+ Jewish community members together in June 2009 to march in the 39th Annual San Francisco Pride Parade. This document recaps our lessons learned & provides highlights on how to plan for future years.

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Jews March For Pride Bay Area 2009 Recap, Lessons Learned & Highlights

  1. 1. Jewish Community Federation (JCF & JFED), Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) and Kol Tzedek Jews March for Pride Recap, Lessons Learned & Highlights Written for internal use as a learning document 2009
  2. 2. Contents Overview ......................................................................................................................... 3 Resources Used (Inputs Invested) ....................................................................................... 4 Community Assumptions.................................................................................................... 6 Pre-Parade Planning ............................................................................................................ 7 Parade Day-Of Recap ....................................................................................................... 10 Post-Pride Parade Survey & Suggestions ......................................................................... 13 Towards 2010: Suggestions .............................................................................................. 14 Appendix A: 2009 Jews March for Pride Poster .............................................................. 16 Appendix B: June 29, 2001 J. Article S.F. Pride: They’re here, they’re queer, they’re Jewish................................................................................................................................ 17 Appendix C: June 18, 2004 J. Article, Pro-Israel message joins in S.F. Pride parade ..... 19 Appendix D: July 9, 1999 J. Article, More Jewish groups join the fun during Gay Pride Celebration ........................................................................................................................ 21 Appendix E: July 11, 2003 J. Article, Anti-Israel float in Pride parade called ‘outrageous’ ........................................................................................................................................... 23 Appendix F: July 11, 1997 J. Article, Gay, lesbian Jews strut their stuff at S.F. pride parade ................................................................................................................................ 24 Appendix G: April 16, 2009 J. Short, JCRC wants Jews unified at S.F. pride parade ..... 26 Appendix H: October 2, 1998 J. Article, Parents of gays bond for support, advocacy at Beth Am ............................................................................................................................ 27 Appendix I: June 22, 2001 J. Article, ‘Queerific’ S.F. in ‘Jewbilation’ over Israeli diva’s visit.................................................................................................................................... 29 Appendix I: June 11, 2009 J. Short, ‘March for Pride with the Jewish community ......... 31 Appendix J: June 27, 2008 J. Short, Marchers welcome .................................................. 32 Appendix K: July 23, 2004 J. Short, Faces Praying with their feet .................................. 33 Appendix L: April 2009 Invitation to March Together ....................................................... 34 Appendix M: San Francisco Pride Month History & Overview....................................... 35 Page 2 of 35
  3. 3. Overview Creation of Program Together the LGBT Alliance1, JCRC2 and Kol Tzedek decided that they wanted to focus their efforts on empowering synagogues and Jewish organizations to participate in the San Francisco Pride. General Output We surpassed many of our attendance and programming goals, hosting 20+ rabbis and 700+ people, representing 60+ organizations. Our contingent was one the largest in the parade; to the best of our knowledge, it was one of the largest gatherings by the organized Jewish community for LGBT rights in the world. General Outcome Jews March for Pride was a success. The attendance of 700+ individuals far surpassed our initial goal of 200 marchers and expected attendance of 300 people. 1 During the process of learning about Bay Area LGBT Jewish activism in their new role as LGBT Alliance Co-Directors at the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin and Sonoma Counties and of the Greater East Bay people spoke about the San Francisco Pride parade frequently. Two common themes emerged when speaking about the parade – that it was a struggle for synagogues and Jewish organizations to get enough volunteers to coordinate a successful Pride contingent, and that these small, single- organization contingents often left their marchers feeling alone as a Jewish community. 2 At the same time JCRC created the capacity to organize a united Jewish community to march for Pride in solidarity with the Marriage Equality Movement. Page 3 of 35
  4. 4. Resources Used (Inputs Invested) Role The role of the partnership was to act as a community convener. Specifically, the partnership developed the event’s marketing strategies, outreach tools, logistics, community negotiations and partnerships. Outreach After an extensive outreach effort to over 100+ Jewish organizations throughout the Bay Area, groups of individuals or delegations represented 60+ organizations. These organizations were contacted primarily by phone and email; secondary forms of outreach included email newsletters, print, and online advertising. Volunteers Volunteers were involved with all aspects of the event, from its planning stages to day- of-parade support. Volunteers spent most of their time with organizational outreach creating unique opportunities to attract people to attend. For two examples, the stroller delegation attracted many families with young children and pride t-shirts with specific organizational logos attracted multiple organizations. Volunteers were responsible for various tasks at the Beale Street Bar and Grill the morning of the parade. For example, volunteers staffed the multiple check-in desks, blew up balloons, sold t- shirts, set up security details, and created spaces for sign decorating and decorated kippot. As a requirement to participate in Pride JCRC took the lead in a massive volunteer effort to ensure enough volunteers attended contingency monitor training sessions. The LGBT Alliance found volunteers for details such as a volunteer professional photographer, Dr. Rita Alfonzo3. Financial Contribution The combined budget estimates provided $12,000 to work with. The financial agreement was that the SF JCF & JFED would put in $6,000 toward Pride and JCRC would put $6,000 toward Pride. According to the numbers below our combined SFJCF/JFED costs were $6,578.73. JCRC contributed significantly more staff time then assumed when we began the process and spent approximately $3,163.75 in non-staff allocated dollars. In addition to the work of the LGBT Alliance Director, SF JCF utilized all the time of a full-time intern leading up to the event plus $2,572.76 in non-staff allocated dollars. In addition to the work of the LGBT Alliance Director, JFED utilized a significant amount of time of their marketing team designing the ads, logos and t-shirts plus $4,055.97 in non-staff allocated dollars. The combined non-staff administration costs were $10,341.98: Kinko’s Day of Signs: $83.97, paid by JFED Bay Area Reporter (BAR) Ad: $1,378.00, paid by JFED 3 Page 4 of 35
  5. 5. Ad in the Guardian: $1,734.00, paid by JFED San Francisco Bay Times Ad for $810.00, paid by JFED Trolley Driver Tip, $50 paid by JFED Making Signs Materials Cost: $200.00, paid by SF JCF Impressions Custom Screen Printing $368.76, paid by SF JCF Dinner for Two Community Meetings: $400, paid by SF JCF Beale Street Bar & Grill Kosher Food: $1,000.00, paid by SF JCF J Ad: $604.00, paid by SF JCF Trolley, $930.50 paid by JCRC 200 Jews March for Pride T-Shirts, $1,718.00 ($1,918.00 - $220 in revenue), paid by JCRC Pride March Registration Fees, $550.00 paid by JCRC Kippot (Yamaka), $3,89.77, paid by JCRC Art materials, $125.48 paid by JCRC Page 5 of 35
  6. 6. Community Assumptions The Jewish Community Federation of the Greater East Bay or of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin and Sonoma Counties has never participated in the Pride Parade as an organized group. Multiple Jewish organizations have created a presence at the San Francisco Pride parade in the past. These organizations as documented in the J. since 1997 are: San Francisco Voice for Israel, Congregation Sherith Israel, San Francisco-based Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC), Consul General of Israel, Pacific Northwest region of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), Jewish Family and Children's Services (JFCS) LGBT Outreach, and Soupers, Congregation Sha'ar Zahav (CSZ), BluestarPR, Temple Sinai in Oakland, San Francisco Conservative Congregation B'nai Emunah, Congregation Beth Sholom in San Francisco, Kulanu at Beth Am and San Rafael's Congregation Rodef Sholom. The 2009 San Francisco Pride Theme was, "In Order to Form a More Perfect Union...." and featured a Stonewall/Gay Liberation Front 40th Anniversary contingent leading the parade off after Dykes on Bikes. San Francisco Pride is a very important event for the LGBT Alliance; while not a specifically Jewish event, it is nevertheless an event widely attended by the Alliance’s constituency. Portions of the community will take issue with Jews March for Pride’s goal of being welcoming to all groups that identify as Jewish. Specifically groups that choose to carry an Israeli flag or a Palestinian flag will be a major focus of conversation. Page 6 of 35
  7. 7. Pre-Parade Planning Our Goal The primary goal for the LGBT Alliance in organizing an event for Pride was to achieve inclusiveness in the Jewish community. With our intention set on cohesion, we focused on two issues: marriage equality and LGBT rights. JCRC's primary goal was to demonstrate support for marriage equality within the Jewish community. Target Audience LGBT Alliances target audience was the Bay Area Jewish community: All organizations, groups and congregations in the Bay Area that identify as Jewish were invited to participate. We choose to target such a wide audience for two reasons: 1. to demonstrate that the Bay Area Jewish community supports LGBT rights and marriage equality; 2. in addition, because inclusiveness is value that is demanded by the constituents of the Bay Area Jewish community. JCRC’s target audience was different. Their target audience was: 1. LGBT community at large to demonstrate support for LGBT rights 2. Jewish community Message The message used to market Jews March for Pride was “b’tzelem Elohim/We are all created in the image of the divine.” Additional messages used included “Equality is a Jewish value,” “We are the Jewish community; we are diverse; we overwhelmingly support marriage equality.” Message Conflict From the beginning organizers agreed that everyone should march under one message, which proved difficult day-of. JCRC issued the following statement one week before the parade: “Because we represent such a wide diversity of group and opinions, we have established one simple rule regarding signs and other materials: Jewish support for LGBT rights is the only message today.” Community Planning Meetings Two community-planning meetings were held during the planning stages of Jews March for Pride. The meetings were open to the entire Jewish community, and through these events, the organizing team hoped to brainstorm ideas for the event and gain the input of community leaders. The first meeting was held on April 27, consisting of a hosted dinner and discussion. The individuals who showed up to this meeting became the “community sounding board,” and were invited to a follow-up meeting on May 13. Page 7 of 35
  8. 8. Registration During the first week of May 2009 the online registration site went live. Upon entering the site, registrants were provided with a paragraph summarizing the event and its goals and were asked to provide their basic personal information. The site was connected to a Google Docs spreadsheet, which was made viewable to all members of the organizing committee. Ultimately, over 200 marchers successfully registered online. However, while the online registration system worked well for individuals registering to march, the set-up was not contusive to registering large groups. There was confusion as to whether an individual was supposed to register for the entire group, or whether all the members supposed to register individually. Overall, the Google Docs system was extremely helpful, and we would highly recommend using it for any future events. Since Google Docs allows multiple users to view and edit a document in real time, it provided the flexibility demanded by our multi- person, geographically spread organizing crew. The system also eliminated the need for one person to “own” the RSVP list and be responsible for emailing updated lists to the other organizers. A final note: the text on the registration page contained some careless oversights. For example, it was mid-June before we realize that we had neglected to ask registrants for their email address. In the future, more time must be spent proofing and editing this critical document. Marketing We utilized both print and online advertising overseen by Samuel Strauss at the Jewish Community Federation of the Greater East Bay. As revealed by our survey results, the print ads proved only mildly successful at recruiting individuals to march at the event. However, while print ads were not necessarily the most effective in terms of increasing attendance, it is important to consider their secondary value: seen by thousands of readers, they sent out the message that the Jewish community supports LGBT rights. Additionally emails were sent out by multiple groups but the most impact was seen by the following primary groups: JCRC Jewish Mosaic: The National Center for Sexual & Gender Diversity Progressive Jewish Alliance JCF’s & JFED’s LGBT Alliance JCF’s North Peninsula Office JCF’s South Peninsula Office JCF’s Israel Center Congregation Sha'ar Zahav Congregation Emanu-El Facebook via the LGBT Alliance Facebook group Page 8 of 35
  9. 9. Volunteer Outreach We relied heavily on volunteers to help us organize the event. In the weeks leading up Jews March for Pride, are largest volunteer efforts were: Nancy Brunn, a member of Congregation Sha'ar Zahav and Carrie Rice, membership director at Congregation Sherith Israel helped us call synagogues and organizations to ask them to participate. Nancy Brunn and Vanessa Eismann organized the stroller contingent JCRC staff secured volunteers to fill several important day-of-march jobs like helping set up, securing safety monitors, checking-in marchers, selling t-shirts, overseeing the crafts, act as contingency monitors4. 4 In order to march in the parade, all contingents are required to have 2 monitors per 25 marchers. To become certified as a monitor, individuals had to attend an hour-long training session held before Pride Page 9 of 35
  10. 10. Parade Day-Of Recap Venue Overview: In our inaugural year, we used The Beale Street Bar and Grill, located at 133 Beale St (at Mission) as our meet-up/breakfast spot before the parade. In many ways, it was a remarkable find. The restaurant is owned and operated by a Jewish family, the Eckstein's; it was only one block away from our lineup spot; and the Eckstein's generously allowed us to use the top floor of the restaurant for free. Venue Feedback: Unfortunately, despite our positive experiences, the venue is simply too small to use again. The upstairs space has a capacity of approximately 100 people; thus, during the morning of the parade, the majority of the participants were forced congregate outside of the restaurant. This made it difficult to communicate group announcements, since the participants were scattered outside. The restaurants two, single-stall restrooms - while gender neutral – also proved insufficient for the 700+ crowd. Registration Overview: Two registration tables were set up at the venue. Registration Feedback: Check-in at the Beale Street Bar and Grill was chaotic and not enough to keep up with the flow of 700+ people, creating lines and back-ups that stretched into the restaurant and further crowded the already-small venue. We were also unprepared for the large number of marchers who showed up without having registered online prior to the event. It was difficult for the check-in volunteers to single out the contingent monitors and give them their appropriate “Monitor” buttons. In the future, we must separate the check-in area from the eating/schmoozing area. We should also create a separate check-in area for the contingent monitors, where we can give them their buttons, inform them of their duties, and designate the appropriate wheel monitors. Activities Overview: In order to entertain the marchers while waiting for the parade to begin, we organized two activities: kippot decorating and sign decorating. The kippot decorating table was set up in a booth inside the Beale Street Bar and Grill. We ordered 300 blank, white kippot, and provided participants with markers and other art supplies with which to decorate their own “pride” kippah. The sign decorating station was set- up in the parking lot adjacent to the Beale Street Bar and Grille. Marchers were provided with markers and paints with which to decorate pre-printed signs. Throughout the event, we encouraged marchers to take photos5, and then send them to Lisa Finkelstein. Activities Feedback: The stations proved to be unpopular; only a few dozen participants decorated a kippah, and even fewer individuals choose to wear their kippah in the 5 Event photos are posted online at and Page 10 of 35
  11. 11. parade. Based on these factors, we do not recommend this activity for future Pride events. While the sign-making activity was more popular than the kippot decorating, it too attracted relatively little participants. The activity also required supervision by one of the inclusion monitors, perhaps not the best use of our limited staff resources. Photos were posted online and many people viewed our website and blog to see the photos. Food Overview: We ordered a kosher breakfast for 300 people that included coffee, bagels, uncut fruit, cream cheese, water and juice. Food Feedback: We needed more food! We ran out of bagels fairly rapidly, upsetting participants who arrived early specifically for the promised breakfast. The food shortage was a result of our larger-than-expected turnout. That said, our food selection (bagels, spreads, fruit, juice, and coffee) was generally well received by the participants. The best decision we made regarding the food was to outsource the food delivery and preparation to Joey Eckstein and the Beale Street Bar and Grill. While perhaps not the most cost-effective decision, it allowed the organizing crew to focus on our “day-of” efforts on the parade itself, rather than the food. Whatever venue we use in the future, we should attempt to have the venue’s staff/kitchen handle the food delivery and preparation. Conflicting Activism Overview: Multiple small but vocal groups attended with t-shirts, flags, banners, signs and materials objecting to the inclusion of Israeli Flags, the inclusion of anti-Israel groups, the concept of inclusion monitors and/or arguing the concept that the organized Jewish community does not welcome Jews that do not identify, relate or participate in activism supporting the state of Israel. The presence of these multiple groups proved highly contentious. Conflicting Activism Feedback: Many participants were angered by signs and displays, viewing these groups as diluting the message of unity for LGBT rights and marriage equality. Others dismissed these groups all together. While others insisted that these groups reflect the LGBT Bay Area Jewish Community and would rather them be included then isolated from the Jewish community. The presence of two groups that did not register in advance, the International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network6 (IJAN), and the Diaspora Dialogue Queer Jews Will Not be Silenced group proved particularly controversial, and many marchers were angry that the organizing committee did not attempt to force these groups out of the contingent. It was suggested by one volunteer that, “In the future, in order to reduce conflict, you must make it absolutely clear from the outset that you expect organizations to be “LGBT first, political second.” You must also consider the assumptions and beliefs that underlie the target audience, and work proactively to address them in the planning and execution of the event.” 6 IJAN did not register to march, and joined the contingent midway through the parade Page 11 of 35
  12. 12. Line-Up & March Overview: The organizing committee neglected to designate an individual to “hold down” our spot at the staging area; we choose collectively not to bring a megaphone and while we printed out signs with the name of each organization, they were misplaced in the hustle and bustle of the event. Furthermore, due to the aforementioned issues with registration, we neglected to designate wheel monitors for the trolley7 and truck8. Line-Up & March Feedback: The parade line-up processes in the staging area needs to be improved considerably. This year’s lineup process was beset by several glitches. In the future, we need to have each group/delegation select one person to act as the “leader” for their group. Upon checking in at the registration table, this individual will be given a sign with his or her group’s name. This system will greatly simplify the line-up process for both the marchers and organizers. By creating an easily identifiable leader for each delegation, marchers will be able to quickly find their delegation, and the organizers will be able to delegate the task of placing all the groups into the proper order. Despite the aforementioned glitches and oversights, the actual march down Market Street was a definitely success. The Jews March for Pride contingent garnered a great reaction from the crowd. The vast majority of participants had a great time marching with their friends and family, and many of marchers were moved by the enthusiasm and spirit of the delegation of teens from Camp Newman. 7 Decorated by the balloons provided by San Francisco’s Congregation Emanuel. 8 Driven by and provided by Marin’s Congregation Rodef Shalom playing Israeli dance music Page 12 of 35
  13. 13. Post-Pride Parade Survey & Suggestions Survey Approximately one week after Jews March for Pride, a survey was sent to all registered participants via email. The survey was designed by Margee Churchon (JCRC) using Approximately 100 people took the 12-question survey, covering the following topics: How the participant heard about Jews March for Pride Feelings on the Beale Street Bar and Grill Feelings on the march itself Overall impressions of the event Survey Key Findings The majority (approx 60%) of surveyed marchers heard about Jews March for Pride through their synagogue. The next most popular categories were through their workplace/organization and through a family member or friend. Approximately half of surveyed participants had marched in San Francisco Pride before; approximately 25% had previously watched the parade but not participated. The most popular reasons for participating in Jews March for Pride: to show support for same-sex marriage and LGBT Rights as a result of Prop 8; to establish a queer Jewish presence at the parade (from marchers who identify as LGBT); and to support an LGBT friend or family member. Positive feedback: When asked their favorite part of Jews March for Pride (Question 6), the vast majority of respondents listed the contingent’s size, diversity and – most of all – sense of community. Other commonly listed “favorite parts” included the rainbow Israeli flags (which were distributed by the Consulate) and the enthusiasm of the teens from Camp Newman. Negative feedback: not surprisingly, we received a lot of negative feedback on Israel-related messaging. Our most common complaint was the presence of the anti-Israel and anti-Zionist groups (and the presence of groups with non-Pride related agendas in general). There were also several complaints regarding the presence of the Israeli consulate; however, the majority of parade participants seemed OK with the consulate’s presence and many people listed the rainbow Israeli flags as being one of their favorite parts of Jews March for Pride. Other commonly listed complaints: 1. lack of space at the Beale Street Bar and Grill; 2. lack of bathrooms at the Beale Street Bar and Grill; and 3. disorganization of the line-up process. Overall impression: Approximately two-thirds (67.8%) of respondents indicated that they were “very likely” to march again; 21.1% of respondents indicated that they were “somewhat likely” to march again. Page 13 of 35
  14. 14. Towards 2010: Suggestions Looking ahead, in order for the LGBT Alliance to invest or input resources9 the measurable and mutual outcomes need to be recreated to better meet the specific needs of the LGBT Bay Area Jewish community and the friends, family and allies of LGBT Bay Area Jewish community second. JCRC has already stated that they will not continue to be involved in the planning of Pride. In order for the LGBT Alliance to be involved in this work in following years the following notes need to be recognized. Specifically the following lessons were learned: Partnerships: Throughout the Jews March for Pride planning process, we were hindered by the contrasting goals and values of our respective organizations, especially concerning the march’s inclusiveness and Israel-related messaging. Pre-March Venue: At a post-Pride recap meeting on July 9, all in attendance agreed that any future events should be held in front the San Francisco JCF building. The site’s advantages are numerous: it is easily accessible by public transportation, within walking distance of any possible parade line-up spot, provides enough space to hold several hundred people, and would allow the organizing crew to utilize the building’s supplies and bathrooms. It was also suggested that we should ask the police to close the street to traffic and then bill the event as a “block party.” Furthermore, regardless of what venue we use in the future, we need to create a flow document and make sure that it is widely known prior to the event so set-up is simplified and the flow makes sense to all. Decorations and a P.A. system should be included in this venue set-up conversation and plan. Volunteer Coordination and Contingent Monitors: Due to our small staff, we need to delegate more tasks and responsibilities to volunteers for any future Pride events. While 60+ organizations attended Jews March for Pride, only a small number of them contributed volunteers. In particular, a rule10 that all organizations send a member of their delegation to a contingency monitor training session is suggested to be strictly enforced. Community Outreach: in our post-Pride survey, many respondents noted that their favorite part of the event was the enthusiasm of the Jewish teens from Camp Newman. As one respondent wrote, her favorite part of the event was “All those enthusiastic teens and young adults! The future looks bright.” This is an example of positive community outreach! We should strive to include teens and children in any future Pride events. 9 Outreach tools, marketing support, financial resources, Jewish programming, and staff time and community partnerships 10 While we requested that organizations to provide their own contingency monitors, we did not enforce this request or follow up with the organizations to make sure that they actually sent an individual. In our outreach to synagogues and Jewish organizations, we requested that all participating groups have one member of their delegation attend a contingency monitor training session. Page 14 of 35
  15. 15. Community Meetings: Rather than using these meetings solely to generate ideas for our parade contingent, we also need to utilize the attendees’ input to proactively tackle issues. By asking, “How do you think the community would react to x?” we can gain leverage on potential divisive messages. On-site Registration: There needs to be a separate registration table for the contingent monitors. Here, we can give them their buttons, inform them of their duties, and designate the appropriate wheel monitors. Contingent Line-up: In the future, we need to have each group/delegation select one person to act as the “leader” for their group. Upon checking in at the registration table, this individual will be given a sign with his or her group’s name. This system will greatly simplify the line-up process for both the marchers and organizers. By creating an easily identifiable leader for each delegation, marchers will be able to quickly find their delegation, and the organizers will be able to delegate the task of placing all the groups into the proper order. Banners: while our banners this year were both attractive and effective at conveying our message, we need larger banners! Their small size was dictated by budget restraints; in the future, we must set aside a larger portion of the advertising budgets for banners. Message Management: in the future, we must be careful not to propose any rules that we cannot enforce. Page 15 of 35
  16. 16. Appendix A: 2009 Jews March for Pride Poster Page 16 of 35
  17. 17. Appendix B: June 29, 2001 J. Article S.F. Pride: They’re here, they’re queer, they’re Jewish "Yeah Jews!" a passerby called out as he walked past the Jewish Family and Children's Services and Congregation Sha'ar Zahav booth at the 31st annual Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Celebration on Sunday. "People seem very happy to see a Jewish presence here," said Sarah Verke, who was working the booth. A contingent from JFCS was one of several Jewish groups and synagogues that marched to show their pride or solidarity with the LGBT community. Participating for the first time this year was the Pacific Northwest region of the Anti- Defamation League. "This is a perfect fit for us," said Jessica Ravitz, ADL associate director. "If we're going to be a true agency looking for fair treatment for all citizens, then looking out for the gay community and showing our solidarity falls within our mission." About 25 people marched behind the ADL banner, including board members, involved students, friends, and family members. Taking part in the rainbow-saturated parade in San Francisco was something the watchdog agency had thought about in the past, she said, but this was the first time someone in the office took the initiative and made it happen. "It was a tremendous experience," Ravitz said. About 30 people marched with the JFCS contingent, including its board president, Norman Olson. They gave away buttons along the parade route, and quickly ran out. "We all felt it was a really great success," said LGBT Outreach Project Coordinator Margaret Rothman, who represented JFCS in the booth after the parade and had marched earlier in the day with her mother. If there were truly one million people there as reported, she said, "this was great exposure and what we're going for. We want people to know that the Jewish community and that JFCS in particular is really welcoming." Beth Sousa, who worked the shared booth for San Francisco Congregation Sha'ar Zahav, said that many people signed up to receive information packets from the progressive, queer-friendly synagogue. "One guy had just moved here, and asked, 'Are you the gay synagogue I've heard about,'" she said. One curious passerby was David Steinberg of Oakland, clad in a hot pink tie-dyed T-shirt. Steinberg moved to the Bay Area four years ago from Boston, where LGBT Jews rented out a church once a month for Shabbat. Having a LGBT synagogue is "really neat," he said. A few booths away was a group made up mostly of Jewish women wearing "Queers for a Free Palestine" buttons, and one of them wore a kaffiyeh. The women marched as "Lesbian and Gay Insurrection" together with activists of all ethnicities and Page 17 of 35
  18. 18. religions. Their banner called for divestment from Israel and the right of return for Palestinians. When asked why they felt the need to call attention to the Palestinian cause at the pride parade, Kate Raphael of Berkeley said, "every issue is a gay issue. We cannot have queer liberation without all liberation. Gay rights equals human rights." But in terms of a Middle Eastern presence, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was overshadowed by Dana International's afternoon performance on the main stage. After Donny Inbar, the cultural attaché at the Consul General of Israel introduced the transgender pop star as the "sexiest, prettiest ambassador," the singer jumped around and gyrated in a tight, white, backless jumpsuit with a plunging neckline. Wearing blue and silver-beaded necklaces with circular medallions reading "Peace and Shalom" on one side and "Dana International" on the other, Bruce Henry of San Francisco said he had been following the Israeli diva's career for three years. "She's a symbol that Israel is a very accepting society. I'm proud to have a transsexual representing them to the rest of the world," he said. And Eran Amit, an Israeli who lives in San Francisco, said he was surprised that the Israeli foreign ministry was behind the singer's visit. "She definitely brings another side of Israel; not what you usually see in the news," Amit said. "But I'm not sure she represents most of the people in Israel." Indeed, after performing her hit song "Diva" that won the 1998 Eurovision song contest, Dana International finished her set by asking the audience to visit Israel -- with a pitch that the Israeli Ministry of Tourism should consider using on those reluctant to travel during the current conflict. "Israeli boys and girls are gorgeous, they're friendly," said the self-styled ambassador, before taking it a step further by describing her compatriots with a particularly flirtatious attribute -- a word chosen especially for this crowd. The audience cheered raucously. And with a devilish grin, Dana declared: "You're all invited!" by ALEXANDRA J. WALL, Bulletin Staff pride-they-re-here-they-re-queer-they-re-jewish/ Page 18 of 35
  19. 19. Appendix C: June 18, 2004 J. Article, Pro-Israel message joins in S.F. Pride parade There’s surely never been an Israeli tourism campaign like this one: an invitation to visit the Jewish state is extended with a promise that you’ll meet a cute guy or girl — or something in between. That’s part of the message on a newly produced DVD about Israel’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, “Out of the Closet and into the Streets of Tel Aviv: A Peek at Freedom and Acceptance in the Middle East.” Some 10,000 of the DVDs will be handed out at the Pride parade in San Francisco on Sunday, June 27, courtesy of BluestarPR, the same company responsible for the pro-Israel billboards posted around San Francisco and Berkeley. Jonathan Carey, BluestarPR’s director, said the goal of the DVD is threefold. “We wanted to show that there’s a thriving LGBT community in Israel. Second, that there are people in Israel working to help the Palestinian gays, because their lives are difficult, at best. And three, it’s a quasi-travel video, we’re hoping to entice people to go to World Pride,” the International Gay Pride Festival that will take place in Jerusalem in 2005, he said. “It’s all working to improve Israel’s image,” said Carey. “We want people to be surprised and welcomed.” Several BluestarPR staffers, particularly longtime gay Jewish activist and deputy director Peter “Pini” Altman, noticed that some queer Jewish groups use the Pride event as a venue to spread their anti-Israel message. Together, the staffers decided to produce a DVD. First they got in touch with Donna Rosenthal, a Bay Area-based journalist and author of the recent book “The Israelis: Ordinary People Living in an Extraordinary Land.” Not only had Rosenthal shot footage of the Pride parade in Tel Aviv last year, but she had all the right contacts. BluestarPR then found a husband-wife team in Israel, provided them with questions, and told them whom to interview. Obvious candidates were Etai Pinkas, an openly gay city council member in Tel Aviv, who is a former chair of the Agudah, the national LGBT organization in Israel, and Hagai El- Ad, executive director of Jerusalem’s Open House, an LGBT center. Sounding a bit sheepish, Carey said the organization really got lucky in finding someone to produce it. “It was really a needle-in-a-haystack kind of thing,” he said with a laugh. By searching online, they came up with the name of a producer who does, as Carey chose to put it, “non-mainstream” gay DVDs. “He cut us a deal to do this all at cost. He wanted to support us because he’s Jewish and gay, and it made the whole project very economical.” Page 19 of 35
  20. 20. The DVD also features “man on the street” interviews, one with a lesbian couple who say they were married by a Conservative rabbi, and are raising their son with no problems, and one with a gay soldier in the Israel Defense Forces who says his coming out has had absolutely no bearing on how he is treated in the army. Another woman ends by telling people to come, because Israel has some beautiful women. Carey said his sense is that most LGBT people who aren’t Jewish will be “shocked” by what they hear. And straight Jews, too, may be surprised. “Even if you’re Jewish but not gay, this is a learning experience for you,” said Carey. “This is something you don’t think about if you’re not either gay or Jewish.” Carey said that with a bit of re-editing it could be entered into LGBT and Jewish film festivals. He hopes to do that in the future. He’s also looking for volunteers to hand out the DVD at the San Francisco Pride festivities. To help, visit by alexandra j. wall joins-in-s-f-pride-parade/ Page 20 of 35
  21. 21. Appendix D: July 9, 1999 J. Article, More Jewish groups join the fun during Gay Pride Celebration They were accompanied by four fellow members of San Francisco's Reform Congregation Sha'ar Zahav who were holding up the poles of a chuppah, the traditional Jewish wedding canopy. The canopy itself was a rainbow flag, and each pole was decorated with purple ribbons. "The combination of the chuppah, which stands out as a really Jewish image, and the gay image of two people in drag was beautiful," said Sha'ar Zahav program director Dahlia Gross, who organized the congregation's group. "It was festive and that's what pride is." In an interview this week, Gross recalled that during the parade, she could hear Jews in the crowd of an estimated half-million people singing along with the Israeli folk songs as the wedding scene made its way down Market Street. The contingent from Sha'ar Zahav generated excitement by dancing the hora around the bride and groom. Along with Sha'ar Zahav -- a mainstay in the parade -- four other groups were in the Jewish contingent at the celebration. Two of those, Reform Temple Sinai in Oakland and San Francisco Conservative Congregation B'nai Emunah, were participating for the first time this year. Also represented were Jewish Family and Children's Services and Conservative Congregation Beth Sholom in San Francisco. Each group had a banner with inclusive phrases such as "Jewish Family and Children's Services: serving all members of your family since 1850." Sha'ar Zahav brought a variety of posters, some of them reading "Oy vey iz mir, my bubbe knows I'm queer." Members of the Temple Sinai group wore synagogue banners around their necks and sang and danced with Sha'ar Zahav. For Temple Sinai Rabbi Andrea Fisher, the parade was a new experience; she moved to the Bay Area from Cincinnati last summer. "I was not sure what the response would be to us because we were a Jewish group marching so soon after what happened in Sacramento," Fisher said, referring to the recent synagogue burnings. "But everyone was cheering, and I felt proud of our synagogue and of the Conservative synagogues that were there." The Conservative Jews from B'nai Emunah included seniors, a family with children and single adults, according to Frank Kurtz, who organized the congregation's participation. The B'nai Emunah group carried the synagogue's banner with the tag line "traditional Judaism without the barriers." "We had a nice cross-section of folks at the parade," said Kurtz, who marched with his wife. "For a long time there have been gays in the congregation and in leadership positions. Sexual orientation is not an issue as far as participation in the congregation is concerned, and we were there to support gays and lesbians in the Jewish community." Kurtz, who served on the regional board of United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism last year, noted that gay Jews in the Bay Area have full support from the local Conservative movement. Page 21 of 35
  22. 22. As for his involvement in the parade, Kurtz said that he was spurred to organize B'nai Emunah's group by Kenny Altman, coordinator of the Gay and Lesbian Chavurah/Outreach program at Beth Sholom. Altman, an openly gay Conservative Jew and a vice president of his congregation's board, e-mailed about 10 Conservative synagogues in Northern California, inviting them to attend the parade. Of the 10, only B'nai Emunah wound up joining the celebration. "I would like to see more Conservative synagogues network with each other as far as outreach is concerned," Altman said in an interview this week. "Most Conservative synagogues are gay-friendly but they have to come out and make a statement because it is not always a given that gays are accepted." Altman said he plans to step up his efforts next year, sending formal written invitations and following them up with phone calls. Temple Sinai's Fisher also has some ideas to expand her congregation's involvement in next year's pride celebrations. "I would like to do a text study in the morning to explore the issues of where it's been difficult for gays in the past and what Reform Jews can do today," she said. "I would also like to bring a shofar and a radio so we don't have to lose our voices and still be loud and festive." by ZEVI GUTFREUND, Bulletin Intern jewish-groups-join-the-fun-during-gay-pride-celebration/ Page 22 of 35
  23. 23. Appendix E: July 11, 2003 J. Article, Anti-Israel float in Pride parade called ‘outrageous’ Cinnamon Stillwell was watching television coverage of the June 29 Gay Pride parade, and what she saw made her furious. So the contributor at Chronwatch, a media watchdog Web site, devoted her June 30 column to it. International ANSWER (Act Now to Stop War and End Raciscm), the national group that organized the anti-war rallies before the United States went to war with Iraq, is aligned with the Socialist Workers World Party. Its float in the parade had a sign that read, "From Stonewall to Palestine." Stonewall was the name of a gay bar in New York City, where in 1969, its clientele rioted against the police in what's come to be known as the beginning of the gay liberation movement. Saul Kanowitz, an ANSWER volunteer who coordinated its participation in the parade, said this wasn't the first time the anti-war group drew that parallel. "The Palestinian people are struggling for self- determination as are lesbian and gay people around the world to live and love as we please," said Kanowitz, who is both Jewish and gay. Stillwell, who is also Jewish, wrote in her column: "The truth is, the only Palestinians who marched in Gay Pride parades this year did so in Israel, but the irony of this fact seems to have escaped [ANSWER]." While Kanowitz did not deny that gays and lesbians have more rights in Israel than under the Palestinian Authority, he said, "The Palestinian people suffer under Israeli occupation, and the source of worldwide bigotry and reaction and racism really doesn't emanate from the Palestinian Authority, it emanates from the United States and the colonial occupation of the Middle East." Rabbi Camille Angel, spiritual leader of San Francisco Congregation Sha'ar Zahav, a synagogue with strong gay outreach, said its delegation marched at the front of the parade, in honor of its 25th anniversary celebration, and no members reported seeing the ANSWER float. She did not want to comment on the float's message, other than to call it "outrageous." by ALEXANDRA J. WALL, Bulletin Staff israel-float-in-pride-parade-called-outrageous/ Page 23 of 35
  24. 24. Appendix F: July 11, 1997 J. Article, Gay, lesbian Jews strut their stuff at S.F. pride parade More than 50 members of congregations Sha'ar Zahav, Beth Sholom, Sherith Israel and the San Francisco-based Jewish Community Relations Council hammed it up for the cheering crowd of an estimated 700,000. "Oy vey! I'm gay. What's my mother going to say?" they chanted. The congregants sang and hoofed a few Jewish folk dances to the klezmer beat of Gay Iz Mir, whose gay members played atop the float. While many of the Jewish marchers were gay, heterosexual individuals and family members also attended to support gays in their battle for civil rights. The 27-year-old parade has become a San Francisco tradition, begun to commemorate the 1969 riot that followed a police raid on a New York gay bar called Stonewall. The parade crowns a week-long celebration of the vitality of gay life in San Francisco and gays' struggle for social and political equality. Rabbi Jane Litman, the newly hired spiritual leader of Congregation Sha'ar Zahav, which has a predominantly gay membership, marched with her husband and two children. Litman comes from another gay-oriented synagogue in Los Angeles, where her kids, now aged 6 and 10, participated in many a gay pride parade. "Gay is good," proclaimed Litman's 6-year-old, Asher, his hair tangled in a plastic tiara full of Stars of David. He scampered from marcher to marcher doling out the colorful stars, which clung like benevolent burs to hats, clothing and ears. Kenny Altman's reasons for marching weren't so simple. "As an openly gay Conservative Jew, I want people to know that you don't have to be Reform to go to a synagogue. Gay Conservative Jews are just as welcome at [the Conservative] Beth Sholom, even if that's not universal to the Conservative movement." Altman is chair of Beth Sholom's ritual committee, although, as a gay man, he cannot participate in one of the synagogue's most important rituals -- marriage."I have faith that by being active in my faith, that's the only way to affect change," he said. The parade was a first for Josef and Lisa Grosch, also of Beth Sholom. The couple recently moved here from Chicago, where groups like S.F.'s Dyke Shabbos "would not go over so well," she said of the Midwestern city's conservativism. "You couldn't even advertise it," she said of such a gay Jewish event. But, she added, a few "liberal-minded" congregations welcome Chicago's gay and lesbian Jews. No one was excluded from San Francisco's biggest and brashest party of the year. Marchers waved signs -- "The clitoris. Know it. Use it." -- and wiggled bare butts, breasts and penises in the afternoon wind. Filipino men cross-dressed in native Filipina costume and honored Imelda Marcos, their country's Evita Peron, with a Philippine version of the hula. Lesbian line dancers indulged in a swingin' country two-step. And every gay- minded political and social group from the mayor's brigade to socialists and seniors Page 24 of 35
  25. 25. maintained a float, streetcar or banner. A beer brewer resurrected memories of the Budweiser Clydesdales with a live elephant that marched to promote the brewer's new ale, named after the lumbering pachyderm. In the Jewish contingent, women donned yarmulkes and men wore boxers depicting the Israeli flag. Others sported T-shirts with the slogan "One in every minyan," and jewelry featuring the pink triangle, which symbolizes the gay rights movement. They waved, clapped and performed for the crowd.Altman struck a hopeful note, speculating that one day gays and lesbians would not need to march for equality. After all, it was only about 30 years ago that women were barred from synagogue leadership, he said. In the meantime, he added, the "numbers [of gay participants and supporters] aren't as important as the fact that people see who we are." by LORI EPPSTEIN, Bulletin Staff jews-strut-their-stuff-at-s-f-pride-parade/ Page 25 of 35
  26. 26. Appendix G: April 16, 2009 J. Short, JCRC wants Jews unified at S.F. pride parade The Jewish Community Relations Council is calling for a united Jewish community to march in the 39th annual San Francisco Pride Parade this summer. To gather people and ideas for the June 28 parade, the JCRC will hold a meeting next week for all Jewish gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender people — and their Jewish communal allies — who are interested in marching in the Pride Parade and showing support for marriage equality. The intention, said Margee Churchon of JCRC, is to march together as a “unified contingent of LGBT Jews and a Jewish community.” The initiative marks a departure from past parades, when Jewish individuals and groups often marched as separate delegations. The meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. April 27 at the San Francisco office of the Jewish Community Federation, 121 Steuart Street, S.F. For more information, contact Churchon at Page 26 of 35
  27. 27. Appendix H: October 2, 1998 J. Article, Parents of gays bond for support, advocacy at Beth Am When Bernis Kretchmar first learned her son Michael was gay, she worried about his health. Because he is her only son, she worried about the continuity of the family name. She worried about what neighbors and friends would think. Weddings of friends' children were, for a long time, painful symbols of her own dashed expectations. "I hardly knew anyone who was gay," she says. "I had no experience. I was utterly sick and sad." The 62-year-old Los Altos resident has come a long way since then. She has marched proudly in San Francisco's annual gay pride parade alongside the group Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays. And on Friday, Oct. 16, during Shabbat services, she will stand with her head held high to share with her congregation, Beth Am in Los Altos Hills, the challenges and joys, of having a gay child. She will do so as a founding member of Kulanu, Beth Am's year-old support and advocacy group for gays and lesbians, their families and friends. The group, whose name is Hebrew for "all of us," has until now held small monthly meetings at the Reform synagogue. The October program, aimed at acquainting the community with the group's work and goals, is in a sense the group's own coming out. Jerry Diamond, a Palo Alto resident and active member of Kulanu since its founding, is the father of a lesbian. He will be among those speaking at the service. "I'd be really delighted if people walked away saying, `Hey those people are no different from us. They're accepted and welcomed, not as gays and lesbians, but simply as people,'" he says. Diamond's daughter Lisa, in fact, will fly in from Orlando, Fla., to attend the program. Her coming out of the closet did not surprise her parents. Nor was it particularly traumatic for them. "It was quite easy to convince her she had our 100 percent support and love and her sexual orientation was her business, not ours," says Diamond, who is 64 and retired from the electronics industry. One reason he and wife Linda joined Kulanu, he says, was to offer support to other parents of gays and lesbians, to "help them cope with what for some is a difficult situation." Kretchmar experienced many difficult feelings after learning of her son's homosexuality. Then, last year, at the urging of her daughter, she marched in the gay pride parade. It turned out to be a watershed. "I set out down the street and I can honestly say my feet didn't feel like they were on the ground," she says. Rounding a corner, she spotted a familiar face in the crowd -- Fran Rappaport, a fellow Beth Am congregant whose son is gay. Rappaport asked what Kretchmar was doing at the parade. "I said to her, `I'm doing the same thing you're doing,'" Kretchmar recalls. "She said to me, `I never knew.' There were tears big time. "I said `Fran, where is everyone else, all the people we know? Where are the people from Los Altos? She said, `Bernis, we're alone.'" A few days later, the pair met and talked about starting a support Page 27 of 35
  28. 28. group in a Jewish context. Together with another woman whose child had recently come out of the closet, they contacted Rabbi Richard Block. "We wanted to come out and we wanted the rabbi and Beth Am to be a part of it," Kretchmar says. "We wanted the silence to be silence no longer. "We made an appointment with the rabbi," she adds. "He had no idea why we were coming. When we presented the idea to him, he was very touched." They advertised in the bulletin of the synagogue and got the ball rolling with a small meeting there. "We met at the chapel," Kretchmar says. "It had a lot of meaning for me to be in front of a Torah." Over the past year, parents, siblings and friends of gays and lesbians have attended meetings, along with parents who have come out to their children. Participants describe the gatherings as open and often humor-filled. Michael Kretchmar has attended one meeting. "It was a really great experience because it was clear the people in the room wanted to be really supportive," says the 34-year-old San Francisco resident, who will speak at the Oct. 16 service. A product manager at a personal finance software company, Michael Kretchmar imagines a day when people's sexual orientation will be no more relevant than their eye color or hairstyle. "I think we're all playing a role in getting to that better place," he says. This year, the group and its supporters marched together in the gay pride parade wearing special T-shirts with the Hebrew word "kulanu" printed on the back. But while the group has so far leaned toward support and advocacy, participants eventually hope to make it a social outlet for Jewish gays and lesbians, as well. To that end, they hope to organize events with gay groups from places such as Stanford University and Congregation Shir Hadash in Los Gatos. "Our concern that our children have Jewish partners," Bernis Kretchmar says, "is the same as for any children." by LESLIE KATZ, Bulletin Staff gays-bond-for-support-advocacy-at-beth-am/ Page 28 of 35
  29. 29. Appendix I: June 22, 2001 J. Article, ‘Queerific’ S.F. in ‘Jewbilation’ over Israeli diva’s visit An Israeli international singing-sensation will make her United States debut along with a plethora of local Jewish groups during San Francisco's 2001 Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Celebration -- or simply "Queerific" -- festivities this weekend. Dana International, one of a few openly transgender artists to achieve mainstream world fame, will perform as one of the signature artists during the official pride Reunion Party tomorrow and the Pride Parade on Sunday. She is being hosted by the Pacific Northwest Region of the Consulate General of Israel in San Francisco. Aside from her musical performances, the male-to-female transsexual star, whose breakthrough single "Diva" earned her first prize in the 1998 Eurovision song contest, will lead a discussion on gender politics, music and religion at San Francisco Congregation Sha'ar Zahav, 290 Dolores St., at 7 p.m. Tuesday. "This will be the first time since her bar mitzvah that she'll be setting foot in a synagogue," said Marc Wernick, co-chair of publicity for the progressive, Reform synagogue open to Jews of all sexual identities. Dana International -- or Sharon Cohen, formerly Yaron Cohen -- will also be the guest of honor at Monday's S.F. Board of Supervisors meeting, by invitation of Supervisor Mark Leno. Her introduction to the supervisors takes place "just a month after we passed our landmark transgender healthcare benefit," noted Leno. "She is a rare individual who had success as a transgender person," he said. "I think it will be a wonderful opportunity for my colleagues and the city of San Francisco to meet her." As in the past, several S.F.-based Jewish organizations and synagogues plan to march in Sunday's Pride Parade. Some of the many include Jewish Family and Children Services, Congregation Emanu-El and the Conservative Congregation Beth Sholom, as well as Oakland's Temple Sinai. This will be the third year of participation by the Reform Temple Sinai. "We always strive to be open and tell the world that Temple Sinai is a safe place to go," said Susan Krauss, chair of the synagogues' membership committee as well as its LGBT group, Out and About. She expects between 25 to 30 congregants to march in the parade. Krauss said the enthusiastic participation of Temple Sinai is particularly important because most temple members "are straight" and it is "wonderful for those of us who aren't straight to be surrounded by others who think the pride march is worthwhile." JFCS has also marched in the parade in the past, but usually as an ad hoc effort. This year, the organization started an outreach program to better serve the needs of the queer community, and made the pride participation a bit more official. As a result, this Page 29 of 35
  30. 30. year's JFCS turnout should be stronger than last. Margaret Rothman, coordinator of the LGBT outreach program, expects a contingent of about 30 JFCS staff members, clients, volunteers, loved ones and board members. "We have people participating from almost every program area," she said. "It's exciting because it's a way of bringing people from all JFCS departments together to do something nice for the LGBT community and let them know that we're here for them." JFCS will share an informational booth with Sha'ar Zahav at the Civic Center during the two-day festival. "It's the beginning of a strong partnership," said Rothman, "to best meet the needs of LGBT Jews." Along with this participation and the Dana International discussion, Sha'ar Zahav will host a series of queer pride events that it is calling "Jewbilation," although the shul is not marching as a contingent as in years past. Jewbilation includes a wine and cheese reception tonight at 7 p.m., followed by a pride Shabbat service led by Rabbi Camille Angel. Tomorrow evening, Sha'ar Zahav will support the Dyke March by gathering at 16th and Dolores to view the march, which kicks off at 7:30. The participation of Reform synagogues, like Sha'ar Zahav and Temple Sinai, was encouraged this year by the Religious Action Center in Washington, D.C., which sent out large packets of information on getting involved in gay pride events. But, as in the past, many Conservative Jews will also come out and make their presence known. For the sixth year, Congregation Beth Sholom will boast a contingent of between 25 and 30 members of various synagogue groups, including the young adults group the Chicken Soupers and the LGBT outreach program, Keshet Chavurah. "It's important for anyone in the LGBT Jewish community who feels they want to be a part of the more traditional observance of a Conservative movement to know they're welcome at Beth Sholom," said Joel Springer, chair of Keshet Chavurah. "We are an egalitarian synagogue -- that expands to the gay community." by ALEZA GOLDSMITH, Bulletin Staff diva-s-visit/ Page 30 of 35
  31. 31. Appendix I: June 11, 2009 J. Short, ‘March for Pride with the Jewish community Jews from across the Bay Area will gather 9 a.m. June 28 at Beale Street Bar and Grille in preparation for the annual Pride Parade. The Jewish contingent will include individuals, families with children young and grown, and Jewish organizations and synagogues. At Beale Street, dozens will gather to make rainbow kippot and eat breakfast before the parade. Confirmed groups to date include: Jewish Vocational Service, Camp Newman, Progressive Jewish Alliance, Kol Tzedek, Parents Place of Jewish Children and Family Services, the Jewish Community Federation and congregations Rodef Sholom, Beth Am and Sherith Israel. It is the first time that the Jewish community will march together in San Francisco’s Pride Parade, which begins 10:30 a.m. at Market and Beale streets. To register in advance, check or contact Margee Churchon at bay-area20/ Page 31 of 35
  32. 32. Appendix J: June 27, 2008 J. Short, Marchers welcome San Francisco Voice for Israel, one of several Jewish groups marching in this year's S.F. Gay Pride Parade on Sunday, June 29, will assemble on Beale Street between Mission and Folsom at 11:30 a.m. Organizers suggest participants look for the Israeli flags. Signs and placards specially made for the parade by pro-Israel marketing and advertising firm BlueStarPR will be available for marchers. Page 32 of 35
  33. 33. Appendix K: July 23, 2004 J. Short, Faces Praying with their feet A busload of San Rafael's Congregation Rodef Sholom members "prayed with their feet" at the San Francisco Pride Parade in late June. Led by Vivien Braly, Sarah Ritthaler and Pam Welner, the group marched en masse carrying signs saying "We'll marry you" and a boom box with klezmer music playing. They were such a hit that they made the TV news that night. The concept of "praying with their feet" was based on Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel's march for civil rights with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Alabama. by suzan berns Page 33 of 35
  34. 34. Appendix L: April 2009 Invitation to March Together Dear Friend, "When I marched in Selma, my feet were praying," said Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel of the Selma Civil Rights March with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Let us march again. We extend a warm invitation to join the "Jews March for Pride" contingent of the San Francisco's LGBT Pride Parade, Sunday, June 28, 2009. Every year, Jews celebrate Pride with their own separate contingents. Why is this year different than all other years? Because this year we want to bring together our broad Jewish community to demonstrate our support for equality. We encourage your participation. Together the contingent will feature the overarching message: we are the Jewish community; we are diverse; we overwhelmingly support marriage equality. As you may know, more than 80% of Jews voted against Proposition 8, demonstrating our commitment to equality for all, but we cannot stop there. As part of the "Jews March for Pride" contingent the most important thing you can do is to bring representatives from your organization or synagogue to march in the parade. We hope that your organization will bring a community identifier (group banner, shirt, etc.) to represent the huge diversity of our Jewish community and support. We would be delighted if you and your members could join us for this exciting celebration. To confirm your participation, or if you have any questions, please contact Margee Churchon, Program Associate for the JCRC, at (415) 977-7419. Sincerely, Rabbi James Brandt. Jewish Community Federation of the Greater East Bay Rachel Biale, Progressive Jewish Alliance Karen Erlichman, Jewish Mosaic: The National Center for Sexual & Gender Diversity Lisa Finkelstein, LGBT Alliance of the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin & Sonoma Counties Rabbi Doug Kahn, Jewish Community Relations Council David Katznelson, Get Fed! Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin & Sonoma Counties Daniel Sokatch, Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin & Sonoma Counties Samuel Strauss, LGBT Alliance of the Jewish Community Federation of the Greater East Bay Page 34 of 35
  35. 35. Appendix M: San Francisco Pride Month History & Overview History of Pride. In the 1960s the police would often raid Gay and Lesbian bars and arrest the patrons. At this time there were laws on the books that said it was illegal to wear more than two pieces of clothing of the opposite sex. Police would arrest men for wearing dresses and women for wearing pants. On the night of June 27, 1969 when police raided the patrons of the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village, New York the butch lesbians and drag queens fought back. The bar patrons threw bottles and rocks at the police. They chanted, “Gay Power!” For several nights crowds grew outside the Stonewall Inn. Word quickly spread around the country about the gay people who fought back against the police. The event became known as the Stonewall Rebellion or Stonewall Riots. Although there was a small gay rights movement around the country prior to Stonewall, after 1969 the movement changed. This was the first gay pride parade and today, pride events have become an annual ritual and have grown to include thousands of LGBT and LGBT-friendly participants, not to mention hundreds of thousands of spectators. Many LGBT people dress in bright colors, head-to-toe leather or sometimes next to nothing. However, regardless of the attire, all of the participants join the festivities to remind the world that LGBT people deserve the same rights as others and people should be free to live their life void of judgment. LGBT Pride month in San Francisco begins with the hanging of 500 rainbow flags on Market Street. SF Pride encompasses so much in the way of activities and entertainment, planning for each year's event begins before the previous year's celebration has taken place. Throughout the month of June, Pride-related events host films, discussions and other performances. In addition to the Pride Parade and Celebration at Civic Center here are the biggest annual San Francisco Pride events: 12th Annual Queer Arts Festival 33rd Annual Frameline San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival 29th Annual Pride Concert: Let’s Get Loud! June 25 & 26 Lesbian/Gay Chorus of San Francisco; The San Francisco Lesbian/Gay Freedom Band; Gay Men’s Chorus at the First Unitarian Universalist Church 6th Annual Transmarch, June 26 at Dolores Park 3:20pm, performances 7pm, March and return to Dolores Park Over 40 different performance artists onstage in Dolores Park both before and after the March! 17th Annual Dyke March June 27 at Dolores Park Performances: 3pm / March: 7pm Join thousands of dykes in celebrating our culture at the Rally and then marching in all our power to the call: Dyke Rights = Human Rights Pink Saturday is San Francisco's largest underground street party held on the Saturday night before San Francisco Pride in San Francisco's Castro district attracting more than half a million people and coinciding with the annual Dyke March. 8th Annual Fresh Meat Transgender and Queer Performance Festival Page 35 of 35