Celebrating Bisexuality – in Manchester and Shrewsbury
It Gets Bigger and Bigger!
Manchester’s 2002 bi day event built on the success of the year before’s and marked the eighth birthday of local group BiPhoria. Thanks to financial support from the Community Development Fund, the event was free despite a large promotional campaign and refreshments being served throughout the day.
Thanks to a longer period of planning, this year’s event was accompanied by an awareness campaign of a thousand fliers and two hundred copies of a special edition of BCN distributed around the city, with full page adverts for the event as well as info about the national phoneline and a range of bi community groups and organisations. (Rest assured, dear reader, that they were paid for locally and not out of your subs money – Ed)
Over sixty people took part in a programme which included workshops on relationships, coming out and bisexual images. Information on a wide variety of local LGBT groups and services from sports to counselling was available and a stall promoted BCN, BiCon and other bi community resources. There were also poetry readings and screening of bi community-produced films including Angel Daaden’s Transgressions and Anna Maria Staiano’s The Other Other. As the food was served, keynote speeches from Jonathan Mayor of the Lesbian & Gay Foundation and Kerry Ellis on behalf of BiPhoria welcomed attendees.
BiPhoria member Sanjibabes commented, “it was really good to see that as well as the partners and friends of bis, this year the event attracted their parents and children! There was quite a family atmosphere.”
Over thirty feedback forms were collected which will be used to inform the planning of future such events in Manchester, and the organisers are happy to share that information in an anonymised form with people planning to stage similar awareness events in 2003. See listings for BiPhoria’s contact details!
Making Something New
Well, it was officially a success!
With the kind permission of the owners of C21, we (a small team of bi and bi friendly people wearing limited edition CBD Shrewsbury T-shirts) set up an information stall in the rear conference room of the bar. It was all laid out and raring to go in time for the first revellers of the night to come on in and share the joys of bisexuality.
Take off was slow, but after a short while a few people cautiously peered around the door and were enthusiastically welcomed by the crew. After that, things went really well. People came in and read stuff, talked about stuff and stuffed their faces with the free jelly sweets. Interesting discussions were had and leaflets were generously spread around throughout the rest of the venue. Some people even read them.
At the end of the night, as the bar began to close the tills and usher people into the nightclub next door, most of the leaflets and all the sweets had been consumed by the masses and everyone seemed to have at least been made aware of the bi presence even if they hadn’t actively interacted with it. Oh, and several (well, more than one) person came out as bi too.
Biphoria, the Manchester Bi Group were a wonderful help by letting us share their publicity for the event and providing us with addition information for the stall. Several people from the Shrewsbury event went along to the Manchester one as theirs was held a few days later.
If you want to know anything else about the day, or about what’s going on in Shropshire contact Gina, the event co-ordinator: [historic email deleted]
From the Shrewsbury Bi Day web site, with permission.