More than 100 people attended the Legacy Project's first-ever Pride Month celebration at the Center on Halsted rooftop terrace June 30.
The night featured DJ FLX spinning tunes, piano jazz by Bruce Kamsler and entertainment by Angelique Munro, Cyon Flare, Kayla Polanco and Madame X.
Attendees perused mock-ups of the Legacy Walk exhibit and watched a video overview of the Legacy Project Education Initiative in the Hoover-Leppen Theater ahead of a presentation by Victor Salvo, the project's executive director.
Salvo said that the Legacy Walkwhich will be dedicated Oct. 11has been a life-changing experience for him. He noted that as the project/walk has evolved he has reached outside of his sphere of knowledge and comfort zone to get to know aspects of other cultures which were foreign to him.
"We talk a lot about our 'diversity' but I have to tell you there is a wealth of history and perspectives and experiences out therethe reality of each of uswhich we rarely, truly get to glimpse," said Salvo. "If the Legacy Walk accomplishes anythingand I expect it to do a lotI hope it will be to open people's eyes not only to what LGBT folks have contributed to this world we sharebut to each other. Because all who come to stroll the Legacy Walk as it continues to grow and evolve will experience a wealth of cultures and backgrounds all collected in one placea truly unique attraction that will set Chicago apart."
Ending his remarks, Salvo introduced many of the plaque sponsors, thanking them for their leadership as the first people, businesses and organizations to make the Legacy Walk possible. Plaque sponsors in attendance included Arthur Johnston and Pepe Pena, Judge Tom Chiola (ret) and Drew Jemilo, Jim Darby and Patrick Bova, Paul Highfield and Ralph Kennedy as well as representatives from the Adler School of Professional Psychology, BMO Harris Bank, Levi Strauss and Fifth Third Bank. Salvo closed by asking everyone to circle October 11, 2012 on their calendars when "the only outdoor LGBT museum walk in the world is dedicated right here in Chicago."
In all, 17-20 bronze plaques are expected to be installed on the Halsted Street rainbow pylons.
Sponsors for the evening included the Center on Halsted, Windy City Media Group, Chicago Pride.com, Grab Magazine, Halls Rentals, Hospitality One, BBJ Linens, MGBPhotoChicago and Gerry Pagorek Florals.
See www.legacyprojectchicago.org for more information.