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Gothic Gala at WSU: Queer Prom

Queer Prom 2021 | Photo by Caitlyn Shatsby | The Wright State Guardian

LGBTQA+ leadership on Wright State’s campus to hold dinner and prom for the campus community.

Chosen Family Feast

The Chosen Family Feast is the precursor event leading up to Queer Prom. On Saturday, Nov. 19 from 6 to 8 p.m., the LGBTQA+ Center will hold the annual event in the Student Union Endeavor Room as a celebration of one’s chosen family before the upcoming holiday breaks, according to the center’s assistant director Emily Yantis-Houser. 

Yantis-Houser described the meaning of “chosen family” and how this term plays a role in the environment and lives of many people in the LGBTQA+ campus community.

“‘Chosen family’ is the idea that family is made up of people who intentionally choose to nurture and support one another regardless of blood or legal ties,” Yantis-Houser began. “We recognize many LGBTQA+ students, staff and faculty come from unaccepting and unsafe family [and] home situations and may be going home over winter break to those situations.”

During the event, the center will provide a holiday dinner consisting of turkey and vegetarian lasagna, among other fixings; according to Yantis-Houser, there will also be an opportunity to make corsages and decorate cookies and ornaments, among other activities. 

Queer Prom

Queer Prom directly follows Chosen Family Feast and lasts from 8 to 10 p.m. in the Apollo Room of the Student Union. 

In the fourth annual Queer Prom, Rainbow Alliance is raising money for the LGBTQIA scholarship with fundraising activities, including the sale of raffle tickets and song requests. 

According to Rainbow Alliance President Emily Winkelman, there are 17 baskets up for grabs in the raffle from shops in Yellow Springs, Equitas Health and campus organizations, including Student Involvement and Leadership, Abilities and Astronomical Collaboration. Students can choose preferred baskets when submitting raffles.  

This year’s theme, “Gothic Gala,” was a unanimous vote for Rainbow Alliance; this theme encapsulates the Addams Family with red and black decorations, according to Vice President Alex Baughman. 

Baughman also explained the meaning of Queer Prom.

“It’s an opportunity for students who maybe weren’t able to participate in prom in the way that they wanted to during high school and also just a nice little party,” Baughman said. 

Winkelman added to this, explaining further the difference between prom experiences at different stages in life. 

“There’s a lot of people who cannot go with their partner, and especially queer people, and there’s a lot of people who haven’t come out yet,” Winkelman said. “It’s important because we just make everyone feel safe, and I think a lot of people have grown since those dances when they were younger, and they’ve become more of themselves and more unique individuals.”

The president and vice president mentioned that Rainbow Alliance welcomes volunteers to help decorate for the dance, noting an arrival time of 3 p.m. in the Apollo Room.

For more information about Queer Prom and Rainbow Alliance’s future events, such as an educating and free testing for HIV/AIDS event on Nov. 30, visit the organization’s Engage page

Alexis Lewis


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