CATSKILL — Residents of all ages will come together in the name of diversity and inclusiveness on the first Saturday of March.
Organized by Catskill resident Elliot Matos, Catskill’s inaugural Diversity March will begin at 3 p.m. March 7. Marchers will gather at the county parking lot behind 411 Main Street and take Main Street to Bridge Street, with activities to follow.
“I am very encouraged to by this diversity march and hope to see new residents as well as old timers participating,” Village President Vincent Seeley said. “As a growing community, our strength lies in us embracing our differences and working together for the greater good of Catskill and Greene County.”
Village Trustee Natasha Law, who helped Matos bring the march to fruition, believes it will be a good addition to the community.
“It’s about celebrating everybody, no matter what your culture is or what issues you may have,” she said. “You are proud of who you are.”
Matos, who works as a medical driver, interacts with people from all walks of life, he said.
“As a medical driver, I am always meeting people from different disenfranchised groups, who don’t have a voice, who aren’t able to advocate for themselves,” he said. “I wanted to do something to shed light on the diversity in Catskill.”
After the march, an all-ages dance party will begin at the Catskill Community Center at 3:30 p.m., with local DJ Gabe G. There is no charge for the dance party.
“We’re delighted to host them,” Margaret Tomlinson said. “Celebrating diversity is a wonderful thing in Catskill. I commend Mr. Matos for organizing it.”
Residents are still welcome to come to the dance if they were unable to participate in the march, Seeley said.
Light refreshments at the Community Center will be provided by Winkle’s Bakery and Price Chopper.
“Elliot has been a customer since we opened,” Eric Delage, owner of Winkle’s Bakery, said. “We definitely support diversity and inclusiveness. We love doing anything we can to help the village.”
From 7 p.m. to 1 a.m., DJ Tedd Patterson will be playing soulful disco music at the Avalon Lounge. The show will be 18+ with no admission fee.
“Elliot is a really dynamic person and I’m excited to be doing an event with him,” Liam Singer, owner of Avalon Longue and HiLo said. “It’s going to be a great day and a great party. The Dj is a world-renowned house music DJ. It’s an honor to host him at the Avalon Lounge.”
Matos has more than 25 years in the house music industry, working on events throughout the world, he said.
Some of his other DJ-powered events include Women of House and Sound of Blackness, Matos said.