Millions turn out to celebrate annual NYC Pride Parade

Mona Ambegaonkar in a still from the play Ek Madhav Baug

For flamboyant Democratic New York Council member Corey Johnson, who at 36 is openly gay and is the city's first legislative leader with HIV, the slogan reflects New York's diversity: It has the nation's largest LGBTQ community, a population more than 40 percent foreign-born and where "more than 200 languages are spoken" just in the borough of Queens.

"It's awesome. It show shows the character of the city, the character of NY".

As in previous years, the parade is being led by Dykes on Bikes, San Francisco's venerable group of lesbian motorcycle enthusiasts.

Many of Sunday's marchers were scantily dressed, like one clad only in a bikini with a rainbow-colored bottom and a pink top. The NYPD says there is no credible threat, but thousands of uniformed and plain clothes officers were along the march route, along with 100 blocker cars and sand trucks.

More than 240 contingents, including floats, groups and other participants, are taking part.

Cole Burston / The Canadian Press Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland marches in the Toronto Pride Parade on June 24, 2018.

The theme of this year's march was "Defiantly Different".


CT resident Olivia Nadler says "people that are oppressed are not going to go away, they're not going to be quiet, they're not going to be ignored".

The 49th annual New York City LGBT Pride March was held in the streets of Manhattan on Sunday. Pride is made up of a lot of events happening simultaneously in the city. The event, and others like it around the country, commemorated the riots that erupted in response to a police raid at a NY gay bar called the Stonewall Inn in June 1969. New York, everyone is in it together.

This year's event was Grand Marshalled by LGBT activists from Lambda Legal and OutRight International, as well as out tennis player Billie Jean King and agender advocate Tyler Ford.

Politicians like Gov. Andrew Cuomo also joined the massive celebration for the LGBTQ community.

The new route begins on 7th Avenue, passing the city's AIDS memorial, before progressing through Christopher Street and past the historic Stonewall Inn, before heading up 5th Avenue and ending in midtown.

March organizers plan to honor community heroes, including Parkland, Florida, school shooting survivor Emma Gonzales.

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