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  • October 2012
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Come Out… and Come to the Alternative Homecoming!

Today is National Coming Out Day, a day designed to encourage and support lesbian, gay, bisexual, pansexual, trans*, intersex, queer, questioning, and people from other identities all over the spectrum in their journey to be open about their sexuality or gender.

When it comes to the subject, I’ve always thought, “Comin’ out ain’t easy, but somebody’s gotta do it.”

According to the National Coming Out Day Youth Report, the numbers of LGBTQQIA* teens out in their schools has risen to nearly 2/3rds! At the same time, statistics from GLSEN‘s annual School Climate Survey have shown that schools are becoming increasingly better environments to be out, open, and getting on with the business of everyday life.

While it’s impossible to come up with the exact relationship between those two statistics, a lot of students have reported that social change in their schools was never going to happen until someone, anyone–the more, the merrier–came out.

It’s a lot of pressure to be that first person–and feel like you’re shouldering the burden for all the potential LGBTQQIA* teens past, present, and future in your community–which is why the Human Resources Campaign has put together a number of coming out guides for all kinds of different situations to address questions, concerns, and many other factors leading to you deciding whether you want to take that step.

It’s probably also why Ally Week comes just four days after, though it should probably come before. Oh, well.

Regardless of whether you come out and who you decide to come out to, the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh can be a place and resource for you.

And now that you’re out, or even if you’re not–and even if you’re straight but managed to see the word Alternative Homecoming and scrolled this far–you can celebrate with this cool dance!

Maybe your school has no football team. Or maybe you’re not allowed to bring your date. Or maybe you don’t have a school you call home but have a home you call school. Or maybe you just want to go to a really awesome party? The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, the Carnegie Museum of Art, the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, and the City of Pittsburgh Mayor’s Youth Council are teaming up to offer the coolest teen dance of the fall!

On Saturday, November 10th, 2012, Pittsburgh teens of all kinds will invade the Hall of North American Wildlife and Botany Hall of the Carnegie Museum of Natural History (4400 Forbes Ave. Pittsburgh, PA 15213). In addition to bears and ferns, here are all the different wild things you’ll find:

  • food and drink
  • sweet jams provided by your favorite librarian deejay (me)
  • a silent screening of Perks of Being a Wallflower, to celebrate the hidden wallflower in us all
  • a free raffle for signed Perks of Being a Wallflower movie posters, provided by the Pittsburgh Film Office
  • lots of cool arts activities, provided by the Carnegie Museum of Art
  • a literary live green screen “Homecoming Portrait,” provided by The Labs @ CLP

You MUST have a ticket to enter! Tickets can be bought in advance at the TEEN desk at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Main (in Oakland), located at 4400 Forbes Ave. Tickets are $3 in advance and $5 the day of the dance (provided they don’t sell out).

Go stag! Bring one, two, three, four, or more dates! Dress as formal and fabulous as you want! Feel free to come in casual wear or your favorite cosplay! We will be handing out superlatives based on your unique style.

***Wallflowers & Wildflowers is strictly for teens in grades 9-12 or ages 14-17.***

For more information, give us a call at 412-622-5526. Hope to see you there!

~Joseph
Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Main

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