South Bay Alliance Association, Inc. is a 501(3)(c) non-profit organization building a coalition of the LGBT community and our allies for social networking, business promotion, and political awareness in South San Diego County.
SBA began in the Fall of 2006 with a small group of long time LGBT South Bay residents at the instigation of Mitch Doty-Cabrera. The intitial executive committee included Dae Elliott and John Acosta as Co-Chairs, Marci Bair as Secretary, and Craig Knudson as Treasurer. In 2007, the committee resurrected the celebration “Gay Day in South Bay” that had been formerly organized by Marci Bair in 2003-2005.
The 2008-2009 executive committee was chaired by Dae Elliott with Marci Bair as Vice-Chair, Craig Knudson as Treasurer, and Lori Grady as Secretary. In 2008, the committee founded the South Bay Pride Music Festival held at Memorial Park on August 24, 2008, This new event replaced the small neighborhood gathering of 2007 “Gay Day in South Bay” with a music festival and Pride event for outreach to the south San Diego county community at large. South Bay Alliance also enhanced its internet support of the community by developing their business listing and resource information websites. In the spring of 2009, SBA moved from a non-profit association to a 501(3)(c) non-profit corporate status.
The 2010-2011 executive committee was chaired by Marci Bair with Ben Orgovan as Vice-Chair, Craig Knudson as Treasurer, and Rhonda Mack as Secretary while Dae Elliott continued as an advisory executive committe member chairing the South Bay Pride committee. In 2011, South Bay Pride Music Festival added the Art component to their celebration and became South Bay Pride Art & Music Festival.
Since its inception, this small group has grown exponentially. Our original 2007 event was a small picnic style gathering with Laura Jane as DJ attended by about 200. A year later, we had our first South Bay Pride Music Festival attended by about 700 and this year’s 2013 South Bay Pride Art and Music Fest was attended by an estimated 2,200 supporters.
After a hiatus in 2012, South Bay Alliance’s board was reorganized by founding members Dae Elliott (chair), Marci Bair (vice-chair), and Craig Knudson (treasuer) and South Bay Pride was moved to the larger venue Bayfront Park while increasing entertainment and activities to include a second dance-dj stage, a juried selected ‘Art in the Park’ display, the ‘GG’s Got Talent’ contest, as well as, hosting two weddings for our “My Gay Wedding” contest winners in celebration of the 2013 decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court allowing same sex couples to formalize their love and committment to each other through marriage in the state of California. The 2013 South Bay Pride had over 50 vendor/exhibitors and saw its attendance increase by 40% from previous years.
The 2014-2015 executive committee is chaired by Dae Elliott with Joseph Burke as vice-chair, Craig Knudson as Treasurer, Patricia Boman as Secretary. South Bay Pride Art & Music Festival 2014 was held on Saturday, September 13, 2014. The duration was extended from 12 – 10pm with two stages. The Port Authority Main stage highlighted our wonderful line up of local bands while our Flicks Entertainment stage was hosted by Pauly and Monks and brought us popular local DJ’s for great dancing. In addition to continuing our ‘Art in the Park’ and more wonderful vendor/exhibitors, we also added rides and children’s’ entertainment by San Diego Kid’s Party Rentals. Once again, our attendance increased but this time by over 200%! Attendance was ~7.5k.
Joe Burke continues as vice chair and executive director of South Bay Pride Art & Music Festival. We would like to also welcome Angela Van Ostran as our committee as Volunteer Coordinator and Tom Cirillo as our Social Media/Webmaster. Our 2015 Pride will be held on Saturday, September 12, 2015 and moved just across to Bayside Park, Chula Vista for more room to expand, access to beach for water sports in the bay. Estimated attendance expected will be over 10k. We are expanding our ‘Art in the Park’ while continuing our successful stages that promote local talent. Stay tuned for more exciting updates as we grow this great community pride celebration!