Arlington Rainbow Commission

Photo of a long table decorated with a trans-pride flag, some handouts about coming out, Rainbow Commission business cards, a copy of the 2018 Pride Proclamation, and an assortment of pins with animals drawn on them in the colors of various sexual-identity and gender-identity pride flags

Welcome to the website of the Arlington, Massachusetts, LGBTQIA+ Rainbow Commission (or just Rainbow Commission for short). Town Meeting established the Commission in 2017. Commissioners were appointed early in 2018 and have met monthly since March.

Apply to join the Rainbow Commission

The Town of Arlington seeks to appoint 2 members to the LGBTQIA+ Rainbow Commission, which was created by Town Meeting in 2017 and began in March 2018. The expanded Commission will consist of 8 members appointed by the Town Manager and approved by the Select Board, and 1 member appointed by the School Committee. The Rainbow Commission was created to promote equality-affirming policies regarding the full spectrum of sexual orientations and gender identities, and to bring greater visibility and empowerment to the LGBTQIA+ population through education, advocacy, and collaboration with other Town agencies, schools, and community groups. The Commission also works to foster community and connection among Arlington’s LGBTQIA+ population, from youth to families and elders.

The Town works to have Commission membership be equitable and inclusive. All are welcome to apply. If you reside in the Town of Arlington, are 18 years or older, and are interested in becoming a member of the LGBTQIA+ Rainbow Commission, please send your resume and letter of interest to: Town Manager Adam Chapdelaine, 730 Mass. Ave., Arlington, MA 02476 or townmanager@town.arlington.ma.us.

Local LGBTQIA+ Events

All meetings and events hosted by the Rainbow Commission (not cosponsorships) are open to the public and accessible. Please contact rainbow@town.arlington.ma.us if you need accommodations. We regret that we generally do not provide ASL interpretation or assistive listening devices. We need at least 2 weeks notice to line up an ASL interpreter.

Mar. 16: Crafts & Community, 1-4 pm, Robbins Library Community Room, 700 Mass. Ave. Come hang out with other LGBTQIA+ folx of all ages! Bring your crafts project from home or use the coloring books, crayons, markers, nail polish, and crochet materials the Rainbow Commission will provide. If you are able to and feel so moved, you are invited to bring a donation for the Arlington Food Pantry of unexpired, unopened, nonperishable food and personal care items. Check out the list of needed items. This event is child-friendly and open to all.

Mar. 16: Forum on Being Asian/Pacific Islander and LGBTQ+, 2-4 pm, Lexington Community Center, 1625 Mass. Ave., Room 237. This forum will explain LGBTQ+ identities, and a panel of speakers who are Asian/Pacific Islander and LGBTQ+ will talk about their identities and experiences, followed by a Q&A.

Mar. 19: METCO Advocacy Day. metcoinc.org/upcoming-events/advocacy

Mar. 21-Aug. 25: Exhibit on “Gender Bending Fashion at the MFA.

Mar. 29: LexPride Social (usually fourth Friday of month), 7-9 pm, Lexington Community Center Dining Room, 39 Marrett Rd., Lexington. Join LexPride for games, puzzles, books, crafts, projects, friendship, light refreshments (not dinner), and fun! This is a family-friendly event suitable for all ages, from 1 to 101! All are welcome.

Mar. 30: Trans/Gender Non-Conforming (TGNC) Kids Party, 2-4 pm. Play, bounce, socialize, and eat pizza. TGNC children and family members are welcome. Free. Sponsored by Greater Boston PFLAG. Contact tgnc.kids@gmail.com for location.

Mar. 31: Trans Day of Visibility

Mar. 31: Gender Revolution film screening and panel discussion, 2:30-5 pm, Cary Hall, 1605 Mass Ave, Lexington. Gender Revolution is a documentary by National Geographic, with Katie Couric exploring the range of gender identities. A panel of teens/young adults of varying gender identities will tell their stories and answer questions. Sponsored by the School Health Advisory Council (SHAC) LGBTQ+ Task Force and LexPride.

Apr. 1: Queer Teen Drop-In, 4-6 pm, Robbins Library Community Room, 700 Mass Ave. Join other LGBTQIA+ teens and teen allies to hang out and relax. Meet like-minded teens from the community and enjoy an evening of fun. Snack provided.

Apr. 3: The ABCs of LGBTQ+ Aging: Planning for the Future for LGBTQ+ Persons & Their Caregivers, 7-9 pm, Arlington Senior Center, Main Hall. Cosponsored by the Council on Aging and the Rainbow Commission. RC’s Lisa Krinsky will be presenting.

Apr. 4: Reel Queer watches Frida, 6:30 pm, Robbins Library Community Room, 700 Mass. Ave.

Apr. 24: Robbins Library Queer Book Group discussion of the autobiography I Can’t Date Jesus: Love, Sex, Family, Race, and Other Reasons I’ve Put My Faith In Beyoncé by Michael Arceneaux, 7 pm, Robbins Library Conference Room.

Apr. 26: LexPride Social (usually fourth Friday of month), 7-9 pm, Lexington Community Center Dining Room, 39 Marrett Rd, Lexington. Join LexPride for games, puzzles, books, crafts, projects, friendship, light refreshments (not dinner), and fun! This is a family-friendly event suitable for all ages, from 1 to 101! All are welcome.

Apr. 27: Annual Drag Prom, cosponsored by Mystic LGBTQ+ Youth Support Network (Queer Mystic), Robbins Library, the Council on Aging, and the Rainbow Commission (additional cosponsors welcome!). If you’re interested in helping plan the Drag Prom, please email Katy at the Robbins Library.

May 22: “The State of Hate in Massachusetts and What the Community Can Do to Respond,” presented by ADL’s Metro North Advisory Committee and Wakefield Human Rights Commission. Savings Bank Theater at Wakefield High School.

The Lexington Pride Celebration will be Jun. 9. Details for Arlington’s Pride celebration are in the works!

Many of these events were copied from LexPride’s weekly newsletter. Go to lexpridema.org/contact to sign up.