Out in the Garden: celebrating National Coming Out Day

Nicole Merino

National Coming Out Day brings awareness to the LGBTQ community. The idea is to speak out on coming out and not have it be such a taboo experience.

CSUN’s Pride Center celebrated by hosting Out in the Garden, an evening full of celebrating coming out without being afraid to discuss it.

“National Coming Out Day is an important celebration to honor those who came before us, support those coming out now and encourage all those who will follow,” said Pride Center Supervisor Jesseanne Pope in a press release statement.

Josue Silva, event assistant at the Pride Center and graduate student in Mass Communication, said that the purpose of this event was to give students a space to be who they want to be.

“When you give people the venue to be themselves, you foster understanding and a sense of community,” Silva said.

The event had free food, t-shirts to decorate, little flowerpots to paint on, entertainment and a photo booth.

Ai-Vy Phan, Linguistics major, said she was just passing by and decided to come in and see what was going on.

“It is very accepting, not awkward. I think it also helps because we are in the Oasis, the environment was set to be very peaceful.” Phan said.

Students on campus shared their coming out experience. There was also a performance by the duet group One Step Closer as well as Taste the Rainbow, a UCLA-based LGBTQ dance team.

Marie, a graduate student of Education at CSUN and member of Taste the Rainbow says they started the groups because they wanted a place where they could belong and still do what they all love, dance.

Flower pot painting an artistic outlet for those in attendance.

Rico, Psychology graduate, says the name Out of the Garden, is a representation of being true to yourself no matter what and what this event is about.

“When you think about it, when you’re growing a garden, it’s all you, you can either build it or tear it to pieces,” Rico said. “The way you describe yourself and the way you put yourself out there, no matter what your orientation is or your race or sex; whatever it may be, as long as you are true to yourself that’s what matters the most.”