PinkDot Utah to make first appearance in St. George

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A sea of pink will engulf Vernon Worthen Park on Nov. 3 as the Support Love Courage Council brings PinkDot Utah to St. George.

According to a press release from the Support Love Courage Council, St. George was selected as the second city for the event because of acceptance levels toward the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. PinkDot Utah will take place between 11:30 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. 

This year will be the first event, and eventually the Support Love Courage Council hopes to expand to all areas of Utah. The event will include speakers, a potluck picnic and the main event: the formation of a human pink dot.

The Dixie State College Gay-Straight Alliance Club will be attending the PinkDot Utah event to show its support in the community.

The GSA has been a club on campus since 2007. Matt Smith-Lahrman, head of the sociology department, has been the adviser of the club for two years now. He said students have become a lot more open about who they are on campus.

“This is a tough place to be gay or lesbian,” Smith-Lahrman said. “I think we’re getting some students who are proud of who they are.”

Members of the club said they generally feel accepted on campus now that the club has been around for a while. Jennifer Gibson, a sophomore elementary education major from Las Vegas, said there have been problems in the past but nothing recent.

“I’ve heard things [in the past] about how some people would try to underhandedly undermine the events now and then,” Gibson said.

Shanell Johnson, a senior communication major from San Diego, said the GSA exists as a resource for students who may feel unaccepted.

“If anyone is questioning themselves, we have resources here,” Johnson said. “If anyone is confused, or anything, then GSA would be the place to go whether it’s about sexuality, their gender, anything.”

Gibson added on as well.

She said, “Even if you don’t want to come to meetings, we know of people you can talk to: hotlines, counselors, all sorts of things.”

The GSA has put on events throughout the semester. For the most recent one, in honor of National Coming Out Day, they constructed a full-size closet on campus and had people walk in and out.

Johnson said the main event they have coming up will be a candlelight vigil for Transgender Remembrance Day. The official day is Nov. 23, but the GSA is holding its event on Nov. 16 before the Thanksgiving break.  She said it will most likely be held in the amphitheater on campus just after dark.

The GSA holds meetings every Monday at 3:30 p.m.