The Detroit Lions will host an LGBT pride night at a game this October against the Minnesota Vikings, the event's organizer told the Detroit Free Press. The event is believed to be the first of its kind in the NFL.
James Felton Keith, CEO of the Detroit Regional LGBT Chamber of Commerce, has already helped organize similar events with the city's MLB, NBA and NHL teams. He said he is excited to partner with the Lions.
“It means a lot, in particular the support and rapid response from (the organization),” Keith told the Free Press. “It means the world, actually. I think, as the Chamber of Commerce we're usually the boring LGBT group. We're the suits in the back of the room just trying to make sure that things are moving along. But these large sporting events play into our InDetroit campaign (and) our Inclusive Detroit campaign, which primarily affects the large corporations in the area. But these sports franchises are some of the largest corporations in the area and they affect the overall social sentiment.”
The Lions have reserved a block of seats in the upper deck for Keith's group and will acknowledge the event during the game, Keith said. After 1,400 fans turned out for the LGBT pride night at a Tigers game earlier this month, Keith hopes to have a similar turnout at Ford Field in October.
In addition to the Tigers, Pistons and Red Wings, the Oakland Athletics also hosted an LGBT pride event this season.
- Dan Gartland