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Celebrating 'Pride Month' and local resources for the LGBTQ community

June 22 is the annual Hampton Roads Pridefest at Town Point Park.

NORFOLK, Va. — June 22 is the annual Hampton Roads Pridefest at Town Point Park.

But on a day-to-day basis, the LGBTQ community helps shape the Hampton Roads community as a whole.

One of the faces of the community in Hampton Roads is Eric Hause and his husband, Andrew Roberts, who are publishers and editors of OutWire757.com.

"We started it in 2016 as an online blog only and then that's morphed into two print publications," said Hause.

Both are long-time gay rights activists. And as members of the Hampton Roads community, they're active in sharing resources, telling stories, and discussing LGBTQ issues.

All of that is amplified in June during Pride Month.

"We always approach June with a great deal of excitement and trepidation because it's like Christmas, month-long Christmas," said Hause.

Hampton Roads Pride brings that same excitement to the big gathering for the LGBTQ community at the end of the month.

"It doesn't matter where we live, who we love, we can be ourselves as a whole and Hampton Roads Pride puts that out to everybody," said Fawn Faulkes, the past president and current board member of Hampton Roads Pride.

She believes this month is celebrated, and Pridefest grows, because there are people out there constantly looking for resources and ways to be themselves.

"The LGBTQ community represents everybody in every walk of life. It's not just one group in one cubby hole," said Faulkes.

That's why representation of the LGBTQ community in all areas of Hampton Roads is important. Local media has Hause and Roberts, and, law enforcement has someone like Lieutenant Meryah Breeden with the Norfolk Sheriff's Office.

"All walks of life need to be represented and need to feel safe and like they have a place to go," she said.

Her story is personal, one that shows personal and professional growth.

"I joined the sheriff's office 12 years ago and at that time I wasn't out. At that time, I didn't quite feel comfortable and as I grew in my agency, my agency surrounded me and started to make me feel more comfortable," said Lt. Breeden.

Proud of her job, her agency, and herself, Lt. Breeden works Pridefest every year.

Pridefest on June 22 is free. Click here to see other Pride events that weekend.

Outwire757.com has a calendar of Pride events throughout the month.

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