Update: 06/09/15 – 12:15 AM EST – Thanks to the Daily Beast we now have video of the Spider-Parade! Follow the link to watch the parade and get more info on how you can help next year!
Original Article Follows
On Sunday, June 7th a parade is being thrown for Ellie Evangelista, a 4 year old girl who was told by boys in her pre-K class that she couldn’t be Spider-Man. This sounds very similar to a story we covered earlier this year about Rachel Laws, a young girl who was told she couldn’t like the Flash because it was for boys. So of course this must not stand! Fortunately, Ellie’s community agreed with us; not only will Ellie be Spider-Man, the neighborhood will launch a “Spider-Parade” for the inaugural Uptown Superheroes March.
Margaret Ryan, Ellie’s Mom, told DNAInfo:
“She started coming home and talking about not wanting to be a girl anymore. When we pushed her on it a little, she said some boys at school were telling her she couldn’t be Spider-Man because she was a girl.[…] I didn’t like that at only 4 she was having to grapple with something like this, that she didn’t want to be who she is. […] I’ve heard of stories where girls start to hide this away. When they are out in public they will pretend to like ‘girl’ things. They will still follow their real preferences at home, but will never admit to them in public.”
Ryan said that she introduced Ellie to Spider-Woman from the cartoon series in the 1970s, but her daughter still identifies most with Spider-Man: “She was like, ‘Mom, I love her, but I still want to be Spider-Man.” Cheryl Burgos, one of Margaret’s neighbors, suggested organizing a parade where everyone was welcome to cosplay as a way of lifting Ellie’s spirits.
Thus the first-ever Uptown Superheroes March was born. It will take place this Sunday, June 7 at 11 a.m, and will follow a course from Fort Washington Avenue to Fort Tryon Park. Costumes and signs with supportive messages are encouraged. Margaret hopes this public display of support will help Ellie and other kids feel confident in their own identities and interests. She says, “I’m hoping she can remember this experience and feel more comfortable with being who she is, in terms of what she likes and what her preferences are.”
Via: The Mary Sue