The 21st annual Peoplehood is coming!

As with most things in 2020, this will be different. In this year of pandemic & social distancing, we are deconstructing the power and purpose of our traditional in-person parade & pageant (which usually take place in October) to be most responsive to the needs of our partners, the safety of our communities,  AND to the powerful spirit of Peoplehood.

This means we are front-loading the strategy and art making for our Peoplehood Art for Actions Pipeline partners’ activist campaign needs while thinking expansively about how to artistically represent, document, and share their stories of resistance aka “the peoplehood pageant in a pandemic” for the Winter and Spring.

If you are a part of an activist group and would like to apply to be an Art for Actions Pipeline partner, click here for the application and more info. Stay tuned for all the ways individuals, families, and friends can join in this Fall (and beyond). 


Please send an email to to let us know you’re interested in joining in this year’s community building and an activist-supporting process as a brainstormer, art-maker, community outreach, and more.

Peoplehood is a 20-year parade and pageant (participatory giant puppet play) tradition that celebrates those living in and working at the forefront of oppression and anti-oppression work. 


The process of creating Peoplehood is designed to be participatory at all points as artists and community members join in shaping the project along the way.

The pageant story and art build list are created in community meetings and  parade and pageant artwork is  made in public sessions in Spiral Q’s studio in West Philadelphia, as well as Clark Park, and partner sites.


The parade begins at the former home of revered artist/activist Paul Robeson and parade participation reflects the diversity and strength of Philadelphia communities. Organizations, activist groups, artists, musicians, and neighbors join together to represent who they are and what they stand for in this people-powered art event.

The parade ends in Clark Park with participatory performances. Spiral Q co-director, Jennifer Turnbull leads the Healing and Reconciliation Dance, a dance created to embody and collectively acknowledge the history of violence done to black and brown bodies in the US. Audience and parade goers are welcome to join in as they are able. See Jennifer’s instructional video here to learn in your home. 

The pageant is performed in Clark Park post-parade. It is a collaboratively created performance that focuses on the personal stories of our community collaborators as well as an illustration of the issues that they care about. The performance is participatory with many audience members and performers learning their role that day.