Twenty-five years on, Laramie still remembers and has turned tragedy into an annual large civic discussion on social equality. 

The University of Wyoming’s annual Shepard Symposium on Social Justice remembers the 25th anniversary of the murder of UW student Matthew Shepard. The symposium was moved from annually in the spring to the fall, facilitating a larger event. The theme this year is “Social Justice Literacy.”

Originally a Laramie community movement, the symposium is now an internationally-recognized event, renamed from “The Symposium for the Eradication of Social Inequality,” to its current name, in honor of Shepard’s family and the social justice work they’ve done since his death. 

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The symposium kicked off on Sunday, with Laramie PrideFest holding a memorial event at the Library Brewery downtown. Events for the rest of the week: 

  • Wednesday, Oct. 11, noon-1 p.m.: “An Afternoon Conversation with the Tectonic Theater Project & 25th Memorial Cast of ‘The Laramie Project’” in the UW College of Arts and Sciences auditorium. Original Tectonic Theater Project company members are traveling back to UW to participate in a staged reading of their groundbreaking play “The Laramie Project,” along with members of the campus and local community.
  • Wednesday, Oct. 11, 7:30 p.m.: “‘The Laramie Project’ Reading with the Tectonic Theater Project” on the Performing Arts main stage. Tickets are $8 per person.
  • Thursday, Oct. 12, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.: Social justice literacy presentations and workshop sessions in various rooms located on the second floor of the Wyoming Union.
  • Thursday, Oct. 12, 6:30 p.m.: Relative Theatrics presents “Hurricane Diane” by Madeleine George in the Berry Biodiversity Conservation Center lobby.
  • Saturday, Oct. 14, 7 p.m.: “United Multicultural Council Drag Show: Eclipse” in the Wyoming Union Ballroom. The theme follows a solar eclipse that will occur Saturday.

To see the schedule in detail and purchase tickets for any event, visit the website here

Laramie PrideFest

Laramie PrideFest is held every June in conjunction with Pride Month. Laramie PrideFest's mission is to "celebrate, honor, and support Wyoming's LGBTQ+ community" and also welcomes all of Laramie to participate in learning about the range of cultural diversity within our community.

Gallery Credit: Nicole Sherwood

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