Pride on Parade

By Jessica Greene and Christie Smith
|  Sunday, Jun 27, 2010  |  Updated 3:03 PM PDT
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NYC Gay Pride Parade 2009

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June 13, 11am Los Angeles Gay Pride Parade 2010. The parade runs west along Santa Monica Blvd. from Crescent Heights Blvd. to Robertson Blvd. and features floats, bands, performances and marching community advocacy groups. http://gaytravel.about.com/gi/o.htm?zi=1/XJ&zTi=1&sdn=gaytravel&cdn=travel&tm=83&f=00&tt=13&bt=0&bts=0&zu=http://www.lapride.org/pride_subpages/PgParade.htm

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The Pride Parade will go on as planned Sunday, event though three people were shot Saturday night at a gay pride event in the Castro District. 

San Francisco police have a suspect in custody.  He is a 19 year old man.

Investigators say it is too early to know if the shootings were motivated because of anything related to Gay Pride weekend.  So far they are not calling them a hate crime and pride celebrations were scheduled to continue as planned for Sunday morning at 10:30 a.m. with a street parade.

 This is the weekend thousands of people are in the City to celebrate Pride 2010.

As always, crowds are expected to be huge -- and the City is ready. Market Street is decked out in all things rainbow.    The centerpiece of the weekend is the Gay Pride Parade down Market Street.

Today, the march attracts tens of thousands of people, and a growing number of those are not in the LGBT community, Koskovich said.

  "That homophobia that says, 'Eek, I'm not going to hang out with these people,' has turned into, 'Boy, these people throw a great party."'

San Francisco Pride is creeping up on middle age -- it began in 1970. This year’s theme is 40 and Fabulous.

"It's part political, it's part a party," said Darryl Groom, 55, explaining the elements that brought him and his partner, Tobey Tam, 41, to San Francisco from Cape Coral, Fla.

The Backstreet Boys will headline the weekend's events. Rose Royce is also scheduled to perform and author Alice Walker and Erasure's Andy Bell are just a few of the other big names you'll see.

Something new this year: Jumbotrons at Civic Center so everyone can see. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi will pipe in a message via screen.

San Francisco Pride's website has some great information on the history of the celebration. It  all ties back to Stonewall, the riots in  Greenwich Village in New york City in 1969 that activists point to as the birth of the gay liberation movement.

 The first three pride celebrations in San Francisco didn't have a theme. Finally, in 1973, they came up with one: A Celebration of the Gay Experience.

Fast forward to today and this still is a celebration of the gay experience -- an all-inclusive one. From films to music to vendors to history there is something for everyone. Civic Center is the place to be this weekend. The price is right: Free.

On Saturday, volunteers unveiled the iconic one-acre pink triangle atop Twin Peaks.

Nazis used pink triangles to denote homosexuals during the Holocaust but now gays embrace the symbol as a way of showing their pride.

Last year, an act of hate nearly destroyed the symbol. Vandals set fire to and shredded the tarps that make up the massive triangle. Flames could be seen for miles. The volunteers weren’t deterred and worked hard to replace the 75 damaged tarps, giving the 200-foot triangle a fresh new look.

The rainbow flags are also flying in New York City.

The city's annual parade celebrating gay pride features thousands of marchers, along with floats and, of course, politicians.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Gov. David Paterson are among the marchers Sunday.

 This year's parade has three grand marshals including Constance McMillen. She's the lesbian teenager who sued her Mississippi school district over its policy banning same-sex prom dates.

The other marshals are Lt. Dan Choi, an openly gay National Guardsman, and Judy Shepard, mother of hate crime victim Matthew Shepard.
 

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