Unite and Celebrate at the 24th Annual Erie Pride Parade and Festival

Categories:  Events    LGBT Voices
Wednesday, August 17th, 2016 at 1:45 PM
Unite and Celebrate at the 24th Annual Erie Pride Parade and Festival by Miriam Lamey

Saturday, Aug. 27

The NWPA Pride Alliance will bring the community together for the 24th annual Erie Pridefest on Aug. 27 with a parade and march followed by the festival itself. Participants will assemble at the Zone Dance Club at noon, and the parade will start at 1 p.m. and move down to the festival at Griswold Park.

“In a year when outward homophobia and transphobia are on the rise, hate crimes against the LGBT community are becoming a regular occurrence, and other cities (such as our neighbors in Cleveland) are canceling their pride events, we’ve heard from members of the community that they are excited that Erie hasn’t put on any brakes or cut back,” explains Anthony J. Gressley, the NWPA Pride Alliance fundraising committee’s entertainment coordinator.

The community’s strength and perseverance will be overarching sentiments at this year’s Pride events, especially considering recent struggles and tragedy.

In fact, the festival has expanded, Gressley explains, to include new performers and a couple of live music acts. Last year’s attendees will be pleased to note that Billy Wynn will again be headlining. This event will undoubtedly continue to grow, and the community’s strength and perseverance will be overarching sentiments at this year’s Pride events, especially considering the struggles and utter tragedy all have recently witnessed.

“Over the past year, this community has regrouped and banded together once again,” Gressley adds. “Ever since Orlando, there has been an outpouring of support from within the community as a whole (straight and LGBT). It’s really something to see how much we’ve grown as a community.”

Pride celebrations will pick up at Waldameer on the following day – Aug. 28 – where everyone is welcome to celebrate Pride Day at the amusement park. – Miriam Lamey

Saturday, Aug. 27: Parade at 1 p.m.; Pridefest to follow // Zone Dance Club, 133 W. 18th St. and Griswold Park, 150 W. 14th St. // Sunday, Aug. 28: Pride Day at Waldameer Park & Water World, 3100 West Lake Rd. // nwpapride.org

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