LGBTQA community celebrated at local festival The Pride Center represents CSUSM at Pride By the Beach


Nicole Holman, Community News Editor


North County residents gathered in downtown Oceanside for a festival celebrating the LGBTQA community.

The annual celebration of diversity, Pride by the Beach, was held on Saturday, Oct. 10 at Oceanside beach. This event, hosted by the North County LGBT Center, is a community event intended to celebrate diversity and show support for local vendors. CSUSM’s ASI LGBTQA Pride Center joined the celebration and set up a table to provide attendees with information on the LGBTQA community.

Guest speakers provided information on a range of topics varying from LGBTQA issues to words of inspiration. The first speaker, transgender activist Prizila Dajila Vidal, gave a speech on living as a transgender woman who has learned to survive living in a hostile world. The next individual to speak was California Speaker of the Assembly, Toni Atkins. Atkins is involved in charity work and public service.

Entertainment was provided by an assortment of artists, performers and speakers. To kick off the dancing, Celeste and the UpBeats provided 1950s-style tunes.

While music played and guests danced, a drag show took place throughout the day. As the audience cheered, performers dressed in elaborate gowns and meticulously applied makeup, confidently strutting their outfits on a makeshift runway.

As guests took a break to stop by some of the many available food stands and craft booths, the headliner set up on stage. Mariachi Arcoiris de Los Angeles, Los Angeles’ first and only LGBT mariachi band, soon began to play their set. Between songs, members of Mariachi Arcoiris de Los Angeles shared their personal stories and connection to both the LBGTQA community as well as mariachi music.

Many other bands performed at the festival, including GayC/DC who performed  covers of classic rock songs while sporting glittery feather boas.

This year’s Pride by the Beach drew the largest crowd in its history. As the event grows in patrons and attendants, the event’s goal of community inclusion and acceptance may become more reality than dream.