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Keizer Pride Fair cancelled

Published: May. 9, 2022 at 10:20 PM PDT
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KEIZER Ore. (KPTV) – This year’s Keizer Pride Fair has been cancelled. This comes after the organizer said she did not feel safe holding the event.

“The reason that we have to cancel is because it’s not just about a physically violent threat, it’s not just about ‘OK there’s people who dislike us,’ I know there’s people who dislike me in the world,” Claire Snyder, the organizer, said. “What’s scary is when people are willing to share my information, place me or my children in danger, place other youth in danger simply because they don’t want to acknowledge who that person is.”

Snyder said she made the final decision to cancel after a far-right rally was held in Keizer last month. The rally was called Reawaken America and was held at the Volcano Stadium.

“When that event took place, me, I no longer felt safe being the organizer, putting my face and my name out there knowing that they were allowed to come into town and not only allowed but encouraged,” Snyder said.

Last year’s event had about 200 people in attendance and Snyder said it was successful overall. However, people did show up to protest and Snyder herself was targeted.

“We were met with counter-protesters who brought signs that had ‘gayness is a sin’ and these things that are so hurtful to see about who you are,” she said. “After the event, they doxed me so basically took my personal information and put it out for the world as well as a description of me as a very dangerous person.”

Snyder said she wants more support and protection from law enforcement.

“There is a line drawn in the sand of who is protected, who is served and who is protected,” she said.

The Keizer Police Department said they responded to last year’s event and advised the protesters to leave, which they did. They also provided a statement saying in part, “Keizer police officers aren’t infallible, but, so far, we’ve provided little if any substantive reason for any group to think the police department won’t ensure they’re able to freely and safely gather here in Keizer.”

Snyder said she is committed to holding the event next year.