PSU held its 10th annual Queer Prom on Saturday, April 27 in the Smith Memorial Center. About 50 students showed their support for the PSU queer community by attending the event.
The evening dance was organized by The Queers and Allies campus group, and marked their last major event of the academic year.
Project coordinator Lyndsay Karmol, a sophomore majoring in women’s studies, decided that the theme, like in the past, should be a prom. “We are normalizing a heterosexual event so we can be who we are without feeling threatened,” Karmol said.
The Queers and Allies group is funded by student fees. Their goal is to make PSU a safe place for everyone to learn and to also be a resource center for queer students.
Other events that they organize include the Coming Out Day Dance, which is normally held in the fall. As a group they also attend the Portland Gay Pride Parade.
It took Karmol about two months to organize the event. Some of the fees for the event were paying for a DJ, getting food and drinks and decorations.
“Overall, the cost was about $1,000, and we will probably make half of that back from the ticket fees,” Karmol said.
The entertainment included DJ Lauren Sylvis, who played a variety of hip-hop, techno and mixed ’80s music. Prom attendees also had the opportunity to get their pictures taken by professional photographer John Gress of Portland.
A diverse array of students attended the event. Even students who had graduated returned to celebrate the event. PSU alumni Ryan Litz was among those. “It is so much fun,” Litz said. “I came to have a good time and see some old friends.”