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Let your pride flag fly: Rochester PrideFest celebrating its 18th year

Let your pride flag fly: Rochester PrideFest celebrating its 18th year

Thursday marks the first day of the 18th annual Rochester PrideFest, celebrating the LGBT community and commemorating the 1969 Stonewall Riots.

“This is a family friendly event, and we encourage the public to come out and join the fun,” said Bill Broring, board chair for the Gay Lesbian Community Services of SE Minnesota. “Get to know us. We’re neighbors, coworkers, family members . . . People may not know they know an LGBT person, but I think everyone does.”

It’s a celebration of the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and ally community. This year, more than ever, we are celebrating the challenges we’ve overcome and looking forward to the future.
— Bob Werner, PrideFest Organizer

This year's festival, themed "Show Your True Colors," comes just weeks after the Supreme Court's decision to nationally legalize gay marriage

[The Court ruling] is definitely a cause to celebrate. No longer are we working toward same-sex marriage — there’s no need to differentiate. It’s just marriage. It removes any labels and provides marriage equality for everyone.
— Bill Broring, GLCS of SE Minnesota

There are a total of eight events spanning from Thursday through Sunday. The main event will be held on Sunday at noon in the Rochester Peace Plaza and features four hours of nonstop entertainment.

"We're especially looking forward to our LGBT Prom on Saturday night," said Broring. "It's the first time we're holding an event specifically for teens."

A complete list of events can be found below:

Graphic: Sydney Flottum

The Rochester Minnesota PrideFest is one of the many festivals held in the tri-state area throughout the year. Learn more about PrideFest and their events by visiting their Facebook page.


About Sydney Flottum: Sydney is a double major in graphic design and English literature at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.  She enjoys being back in Rochester for the summer and spending time reading, drawing, and catching up with friends and family. Currently, she’s attempting to teach herself how to play the accordion but is overwhelmed by all the buttons.


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(Cover photo: 2008 / Charlie Nguyen / Creative Commons)

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