September 19, 2019

Mathew Lasky
Director of Communications, GLAAD

In honor of Spirit Day, Kacey Musgraves gives fans a chance to win two VIP tickets to one of her sold-out shows at Radio City Hall in New York

In partnership with Little Bee Books, GLAAD releases new LGBTQ-inclusive book ‘Spirit Day: A Book About Spreading Joy’ in honor of Spirit Day

Presenting partners Pantene and Target, official partners Kellogg’s, The NBA and the WNBA, and community partners Wells Fargo and Amazon will all participate in 2019 Spirit Day

New York, NY, Thursday, September 19, 2019 - Today, GLAAD, the world's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization, announced the official countdown to 2019 Spirit Day, which will take place on Thursday, October 17.

On Spirit Day - the world’s largest and most visible LGBTQ anti-bullying campaign - millions of people around the world will wear purple or go purple online in a unified stand against bullying and to show support for LGBTQ youth. Purple symbolizes ‘spirit’ on the rainbow flag. Each year, Spirit Day draws the participation of celebrities, corporations, media outlets, sports leagues, schools, faith institutions, national landmarks, and individuals.

This year, presenting partners Pantene and Target, official partners Kellogg’s and the NBA & WNBA, as well as community partners Wells Fargo and Amazon will all participate in the anti-bullying campaign.

GLAAD also announced that Grammy-award winning artist and longtime LGBTQ ally Kacey Musgraves will be honoring Spirit Day by donating two VIP seats to GLAAD to either of her sold-out concerts at Radio City Music Hall in NYC on October 15 or October 16. By making a donation to GLAAD’s work with LGBTQ youth, fans can win two VIP tickets to Kacey’s concert and a chance to meet her backstage. For more information about the contest, please visit www.glaad.org/kaceymusgravessweeps.

Musgraves has spoken publicly and movingly about her experience growing up around homophobia in a small town in Texas. After her best friend came out to her after high school, she realized the importance of using her voice to advocate for equality. In 2013, she faced intense backlash for her single “Follow Your Arrow,” which encouraged acceptance for LGBTQ people, but Musgraves stood her ground. She performed the song at the 2014 GLAAD Media Awards, and it has since become an anthem for inclusion that she now plays at almost every concert. Musgraves is particularly dedicated to fighting for LGBTQ youth and has supported Spirit Day by going purple in previous years.

The second year in a row, GLAAD will co-hosting the Queer Lounge at New York Comic Con on October 3rd and 4th where attendees will be able to take the pledge to go Purple for #SpiritDay.

GLAAD also announced the release of a new LGBTQ-inclusive children’s book titled, Spirit Day: A Book About Spreading Joy. In partnership with Little Bee Books, Spirit Day: A Book About Spreading Joy is the sixth book to be released in an ongoing series of LGBTQ-inclusive children’s books. Illustrated by Joy Yang, Spirit Day: A Book About Spreading Joy is a beautiful, bold board book that teaches children about Spirit Day and its mission to stop bullying. As of September 3, Spirit Day: A Book About Spreading Joy can be purchased on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and at various in-store locations.

“From the world’s biggest stars and athletes to local classrooms and pastors, Spirit Day has become a megaphone for allies to send a unified message of acceptance and support to LGBTQ youth each year,” says Sarah Kate Ellis, President and CEO of GLAAD. “In today’s divisive culture and political climate, LGBTQ people and allies need to be louder than ever to outshine bullies and tell young people that they will always be supported just as they are.”

Previous Spirit Day participants include the Obama White House, the Empire State Building, Oprah Winfrey, Britney Spears, Ellen DeGeneres, Cher, Kerry Washington, Laverne Cox, Shaquille O'Neal, Jimmy Kimmel, Alyssa Milano, Bebe Rexha, Mj Rodriguez, Yara Shahidi, Troye Sivan, Good Morning America, The Today Show, The View, The Talk, The Tonight Show, the NBA, all Major League Baseball teams, NASCAR, WWE, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, tumblr, the Las Vegas Strip, and more.

In 2018, #SpiritDay sparked over 150 unique press stories, 100k+ unique social mentions across platforms, and earned over 1.6 billion social media impressions.

Coinciding with National Bullying Prevention Month, Spirit Day began in 2010 when then high school student Brittany McMillan created a Tumblr post asking students to wear purple following the suicide deaths of several LGBTQ and LGBTQ-perceived young people.

According to GLSEN's most recent National School Climate Survey, 70.1% of LGBTQ students report being verbally harassed. Additionally, 59.5% of LGBTQ students feel unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation and 44.6% because of their gender expression. GLSEN also reported that 87.3% of LGBTQ students experienced harassment or assault based on personal characteristics, including sexual orientation, gender expression, gender, religion, actual or perceived race and ethnicity, and actual or perceived disability.

For more information on Spirit Day, visit http://glaad.org/spiritday.

About Little Bee Books:

Little Bee Books is a children's book publisher dedicated to making high-quality, creative, and fun books for busy little bees ages 0 through 12, offering an inspired selection of early learning concept books, board books, novelty books, activity books, picture books, chapter books, nonfiction, gift sets, and more. For more information, please visit littlebeebooks.com