Celebrating Trans Accomplishments and Victories
Trans Day of Visibility (TDOV) is celebrated annually around the world on March 31 and is dedicated to the accomplishments and victories of trans and gender non-conforming people, all while raising awareness of the work that is still needed to save trans lives. This year, The Grand Rapids Pride Center and Grand Rapids Trans Foundation felt that one day is not enough, so they decided to extend the celebration from March 23rd to March 31st with a variety of events around Grand Rapids.
An estimated 41% of all trans-identified individuals attempt suicide, compared to less than 2% of the rest of the population. Transgender people face struggles in various forms, from anxiety and dysphoria, to violence and bullying. 8THIRTYFOUR recognizes the problems trans-identified individuals face every day, and we commend The Grand Rapids Pride Center and Grand Rapids Trans Foundation for dedicating a whole week to the trans community. We’re with you and will be participating all week. A list of events is listed below so you can come participate with us.
Friday, March 23rd – 5pm to 8pm: Trans Week of Visibility Kick-Off Fundraiser
- Apartment Lounge – 33 Sheldon Blvd NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
- The Apartment Lounge’s Friday fundraiser event will benefit Grand Rapids Pride Center and the Grand Rapids Trans Foundation. Come out and show your personal Pride, commitment to end discrimination, and solidarity with the Trans Community. 50/50 Raffle and more. *21+ Only
Saturday, March 24th – 3pm to 4pm: 2nd Annual Children & Family Reading Hour at Books & Mortar
- Books & Mortar – 955 Cherry Street SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49506
- Bring your children down to hear the stories celebrating trans and gender non-conforming youth.
Sunday, March 25th – 7:30pm to 8:30pm: 2nd Annual Blue Bridge Lights Up In The Colors Of The Trans Pride Flag
- Blue Bridge, Downtown Grand Rapids
- Join the GRPC on the blue bridge to kick off a week of visibility for the transgender community, leading up to the global Transgender Day of Visibility on the 31st. They will be lighting up the bridge in the colors of the Trans Flag and saying a few words.
Friday, March 30th – 3pm and 6pm showings: Documentary “Real Boy: A Son’s Transition, A Mom’s Transformation”
- Celebration Cinema North – 2121 Celebration Dr NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49525
- This is a free event and seating will be on a first come first serve basis. Seating cannot be reserved or saved. Spectrum Heath, in collaboration with Healthy Pride, LGBTQ Employee Resource Group presents the documentary, an intimate story of a family in transition. As 19-year-old Bennett Wallace navigates sobriety, adolescence, and the evolution of his gender identity, his mother makes her own transformation from resistance to acceptance of her trans son. Along the way, both mother and son find support in their communities, reminding us that families are not only given, but chosen.
- Each screening is followed by a reception in the Wave Room with opportunity to talk to the starts Bennett Wallace and his mentor Joe Stevens, plus talking stations where audience members can learn more about the trans experience.
Saturday, March 31st – 2pm to 3pm Reception, 3pm to 6pm Open Mic: Trans Day of Visibility: Trans Art Showcase and Stories of Truth, Power and Positivity!
- University Club – 111 Lyon St. NW, Suite 1025, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
- Amidst the fear and hatred in the world, the transgender community is thriving and that is something worth celebrating. Join us for a night of art for and by members of the trans community, celebration, and entertainment. Hear inspiring stories from our trans siblings, and learn about the positive work happening in the community. Special Guest, Rachel Crandall-Crocker, Executive Director of Transgender Michigan and founder of TDOV! *Family Inclusive, Adult language may be used by some of the speakers.
Whether you’re part of the trans community or an ally, we welcome you to join us all week in recognizing the struggle that is ever present in the trans community, and to celebrate all the accomplishments that have been made by and for trans individuals.