Hundreds of Thousands Flood San Francisco for Annual SF Pride Parade - NBC Bay Area
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Hundreds of Thousands Flood San Francisco for Annual SF Pride Parade

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Though the annual theme of the SF Pride Parade centered on racial and economic equality, Sunday's event added a clear anti-violence message in the wake of the Orlando shooting. Laura Malpert and Sharon Katsuda report. (Published Sunday, June 26, 2016)

    Though the annual theme of the SF Pride Parade centered on racial and economic equality, Sunday's event added a clear anti-violence message in the wake of the Orlando shooting.

    "They died for us," said Frida K. Hole of San Francisco. "We have to be out there and stand up for them so people never forget we are marginalized, we're isolated. And until we stand up for AIDS, for the gay community, for everything, nothing will change."

    Hundreds of thousands flocked to San Francisco for the parade, sporting colorful costumes, waving rainbow flags and making their Pride statement. Lt. Gov. and former San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom was among the participants.

    "It's somber in some respects post Orlando," Newsom said. "It's a punctuation point on a world, particularly after Brexit, that's focusing on the illusions of separatism. Here we're celebrating pluralism."

    The event featured beefed up security throughout, including screenings and metal detectors at entrances and a heavy police presence along the entire parade route.

    "Personally, I'm grateful for it," said Dale Parcell, of Arizona. "I know some people feel threatened by the extent of police coverage, but to me it's reassuring."

    No major incidents were reported during the parade.

    The celebration continued at a post-parade party at Civic Center Plaza, where security was just as tight and the revelers were just as peaceful. 

    Later in the evening, SF Pride capped its weekend with the premiere of "Looking: The Movie" at the Castro Theatre. The film, basd on a short-lived HBO series, stars Jonathan Groff, Frankie J. Alvarez and Murray Bartlett as three gay friends searching for love and fulfillment in San Francisco.

    "One of the cool things about being a part of 'Looking' is when you come out as an actor, you don't really know what to expect. Will it be good for your career? Will it be bad for your career? What's going to happen?" Groff said. "'Looking' has been the greatest experience I've ever had."

    Check back for updates and tag your #SFPRIDE pictures @NBCBayArea. 

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