-- Festivities to Include LGBTQ+ Post-Game Panel Featuring Trailblazing Hall of Fame Triathlete Chris Mosier and Additional Prominent Figures in the Sports World --
On Thursday, March 5, the Sacramento Kings will host the seventh annual Equality Night as they take on the Philadelphia 76ers. British singer-songwriter and DJ Samantha Ronson will headline the night’s entertainment with a halftime performance.
Prior to the game, Ronson will host 20 local youth ages 13-18 from the Sacramento LGBT Community Center for a Studio Session, powered by SMUD and Arden Fair. The youth will receive a tour of the studio and hear from Ronson during the session as she shares her experiences and insight as an advocate in the LGBTQ+ community.
“We are excited to partner with the Sacramento Kings for Equality Night and work together to ensure that Sacramento is a region in which LGBTQ+ people thrive,” said Sacramento LGBT Community Center Director of Programs Koby Rodriguez. “Celebrating events like Equality Night and the Pride March is an impactful way to support the LGBTQ+ community, create an environment where all people feel welcome and highlight the impact that LGBTQ+ people make in the Sacramento area.”
“We are excited to use our platform to celebrate Equality Night and recognize the LGBTQ+ community,” said Sacramento Kings Chief Operating Officer Matina Kolokotronis. “Sacramento is made up of diverse populations who all contribute greatly to this city, and it is a privilege to honor the LGBTQ+ changemakers and advocates who support the region in such a meaningful way.”
Throughout the night, a youth art exhibit from the Sacramento LGBT Community Center will be featured on the concourse, along with banners for fans to write messages of support for equality, which will be included on the team’s float for the Sacramento Pride March in June. In-game videos will be played to honor and recognize members of the LGBTQ+ community within the Kings organization, prominent LGBTQ+ members who have paved the way in the sports world and LGBTQ+ advocates for their contributions to society and the fight for equality.
The Kings will honor Kimmera Smith with the 2020 Equality Award in-game. Kimmera is a high school student who has been accepted to San Francisco State due to their exemplary academics and school leadership. They are involved with the Sacramento Building Healthy Communities Youth Leadership Team, local HER movement iQSquad, Queer Voices at the Sacramento LGBT Center, and work on a youth mental health awareness project in collaboration with the Sacramento Building Healthy Communities Leadership Team.
Following the game, Rodriguez will lead a panel discussion that’s open to fans in attendance on a first-come, first-served basis in the Assembly Lounge featuring prominent LGBTQ+ leaders and advocates, including captain of the 2013 Final Four Cal Women’s Basketball Team Afure Jemerigbe, transgender professional triathlete and six-time member of Team USA Chris Mosier, ESPN MLB Senior Editor and Baseball Prospectus Co-Founder Christina Kahrl and LGBTQ sports writer and Co-Founder of Outsports.com Cyd Zeigler. These panelists will also participate in a luncheon conversation with Kings team members to discuss the intersection of sports, sexuality and gender identity.
The Kings are proud to continue their history of celebrating and embracing the LGBTQ+ community. Over the years, the team has supported the rich diversity that makes up the city of Sacramento, participating in the annual Pride celebration, highlighting the impact of LGBTQ+ trailblazers in sport, supporting the Proud to Play campaign and highlighting LGBTQ+ members of the team’s staff who are making an impact in the sports and entertainment industry.