A Celebration of Love

Photo by Matt Siciliano-Salazar | The Signal

Over the past week, there have been different pride events from the Pride Prom on national coming out day hosted by Georgia State to Pride Weekend.

On October 15, the city hosted its annual pride parade.

Kicking off at noon and lasting until a little after four, the event was a city affair. During the parade there were many floats and organizations represented, one being Georgia State. Students had the opportunity to march in the parade as representatives of the LGBTQIA+ community on campus.

Throughout the parade, there was music, dancing, giveaways and the spread of love. Patrons even witnessed special guests like Mayor Andre Dickens.

Each year the parade is a hit. According to Atlanta Pride, this event is the biggest event of the pride festival “drawing over a hundred thousand people along the streets of Midtown Atlanta!”

The exact number of people that showed out this year isn’t known, but being in the crowd felt like there were thousands out there.

In the U.S., Pride is celebrated throughout June. According to the Library of Congress, the celebration occurs this month to honor the Stonewall Uprising, the tipping point for the Gay Liberation Movement. Leading up to the event, the Stonewall Inn was raided at least once a month and had been raided earlier in the week before June 28, 1969.

According to the Library of Congress, “It was not the first time police raided a gay bar, and it was not the first time LGBTQ+ people fought back, but the events that would unfold over the next six days would fundamentally change the discourse surrounding LGBTQ+ activism in the United States.”

In the early years, Pride was celebrated on the last Sunday of June but is now celebrated all 30 days of the month.

Atlanta still has Pride events in June, but it waits until October for the festival and parade to comply with Piedmont Park’s rules regarding events at the venue during that time. The festival and parade occur the second weekend in October in conjunction with national coming out day on the eleventh.

Though the parade was the highlight of the weekend, there were other events between Friday and Sunday. On Saturday the Atlanta Pride Committee hosted three annual marches, the Trans March, the Bi and Pan March and the Dyke March. All of these walks allowed individuals who share these identities to celebrate and speak out on issues regarding those groups of people.

The actual festival was at Piedmont Park on the 14 and 15. The celebration at the park was free and featured many different artists.

From the Atlanta Pride’s website, “Each year, the Atlanta Pride Committee strives to include talent and events that provide a wide range of entertainment for Festival goers and 2023’s lineup will not disappoint.”

Artists apart of the lineup included Saucy Santana, Erica Mason and Chrissy Chlapaeka to name a few.

Atlanta Pride weekend was a celebration of love and awareness. Though this event was a citywide occurrence noticed by many, Pride is undeniable every day of the year.