UTM’s Queer Orientation continued last week and ended on Wednesday night with the annual “Night Crawl”. Throughout the two-week-long LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, and queer) frosh event, both attendance and spirits were high.
The second week of events began when OUT@UTM officially unveiled their new clubroom on the second floor of the Student Centre and announced their office hours for the year. The room is small but cozy, and its walls are covered with LGBTQ posters both campy and chic. The week continued on Tuesday with a retro gaming night.
The retro gaming night was the first collaboration ever between OUT@UTM and the Erindale Gaming Organization, and it had a large turnout from both clubs. Students played classic Nintendo games and board games in the Student Centre almost until midnight. Around the end of the night, club executives announced that because of the success of the event, the two clubs were planning to arrange a similar event every month.
Queer Orientation wound down on Wednesday, which began with an active dialogue. Queer and ally students shared stories and discussed LGBTQ issues associated with student and campus life. The topics included homophobia and transphobia on campus, coming out, and the problems and benefits of safe spaces as they currently exist.
The last event held on campus was the Night Crawl. UTM students waited until after dark, and then wandered through the nature trails behind the campus with only flashlights and glow sticks to guide them. Laughing and smiling, they stumbled over logs and tree roots until they reached the gazebo in Erindale Park. The gazebo had been decorated with rainbow flags and streamers and was lit up by dozens of tea candles set in mason jars, which gave the night a quaint 19th-century feeling. Students talked by the gazebo and roasted marshmallows, then slowly dispersed.
The year’s first OUT@UTM events were a great success. The club has many plans for the coming year.