On May 4, 2014, Nashville Gay Parents will host a family picnic event in Cedar Hill Park, located just off Old Hickory Boulevard, in honor of International Family Equality Day. For the third year in a row, the Family Equality Council (FEC), in conjunction with partners worldwide, will celebrate LGBT families. Events organized by local communities include events like a special package at the Big Apple Circus Show in Boston and a day at the Chicago Children’s Museum, as well as more intimate and low-key gatherings like Nashville’s day of food, fellowship and games in the park.
Brian Copeland, a local realtor and an organizer of the Nashville Gay Parents group, who also serves on the Midwest Advisory of the Family Equality Council, said, “We were very honored to be asked to be a host city. It’s the first year Nashville has been invited to take part.” It was actually the Family Equality Council who reached out to the Nashville Gay Parents group. Having just worked to establish a Southern Advisory, the Family Equality Council is striving to “create a presence in cities like Nashville, so we’ll see a lot more events in the Southeast.”
The goal of the FEC as a whole, Brian explains, is both making connections between LGBT families and advocacy: “their goal is to be the voice of the LGBT family internationally, to bring us together and weave us into a community, to advocate for us as necessary and to keep attorneys available as necessary.” Brian and his partner Greg experienced firsthand the need for such an organization. When they faced roadblocks in the process of adopting, it the FEC heard about their plight. Thankfully, Brian reports, “they reached out to us and helped us when we really needed it. We hadn’t even asked.”
The May 4 event in Nashville is a casual gathering, and will run from noon to 3 p.m.. Families are asked to bring their own picnic food and and gather together at the park with other LGBT families for an afternoon of fun and games at Shelter #7. The park has a playground and areas safe for playing ball. Brian said, “Our goal is to bring Middle Tennessee families together. As it’s our first year we wanted to have a low key event where people could socialize comfortably, and maybe build up to something bigger in future years.” The FEC will also be sending over some door prizes, like t-shirts and other merchandise, to give away. For more information or to RSVP, click here.