OKC Pride Festival to start weekend celebration
It will be a weekend full of fun, entertainment, food and celebration in downtown Oklahoma City.
The OKC Pride Festival kicks off Friday at 5 p.m. This weekend’s celebration will take place for the first time at Scissortail Park.
There is a huge lineup of events, including a drag show at 6 p.m. and a performance by singer Greyson Chance at 7 p.m.
There will also be a children’s area for the youngest.
Saturday’s parade will begin at 10 a.m. and will begin on West Sheridan Avenue to North Shartel Avenue and then turn south on Hudson. The parade will continue south on Hudson and end at Scissortail Park.
The weather is expected to be still warm this weekend, so the festival will have water stations and cooling stations. Organizers said donations with water crates would be appreciated.
OKC Pride Alliance Vice President Ryan Tomlinson said they were delighted to see people come together a year after the event was canceled by the COVID-19 pandemic.
â€œYet seeing the momentum of the OKC Pride Fest after the pandemic and seeing the community come out and want to show their support and stand up for them, is very heartwarming for us,â€ said Tomlinson.
Tomlinson said the festival is open to everyone to meet people and learn more about the LGBTQ community.
â€œJust understand who they are and how they live their lives,â€ said Tomlinson. “They are all people and we all want to be treated equally and we want love and respect, and we are part of this community.”
History of pride:
Early on the morning of June 28, 1969, New York Police raided the Stonewall Inn, a gay club located in Greenwich Village, New York.
The raid sparked a riot among bar patrons and residents of neighboring neighborhoods.
This led to several days of protests and violent clashes with law enforcement outside the Christopher Street bar in nearby streets and near Christopher Park.
The Stonewall riots became a turning point in the struggle for LGBTQ civil rights.
In 2016, the Stonewall Inn was designated a national monument by then-President Barack Obama.
As the LGBTQ community and its allies celebrate this weekend, Tomlinson said they continue to fight for equality.
“We are there, although many years later, and we are still fighting the good fight while recognizing the progress that has been made,” said Tomlinson.
For a full list of Pride events this weekend, click here.
To learn more about the history of gay rights in America, click here.