Pride Parade Wows

by Sue O’Connell

Bay Windows

Thursday June 14, 2012

Official Parade meteorologist David Brown (WCVB-TV) must have pulled some strings to deliver perfect weather for Saturday, June 9ths Boston Pride Parade; and Parade Marshal Fast Freddy (Mix 104.1) delivered on his promise to fill the parade route with confetti-at $15-per-pound. All the forces combined to make this Pride celebration one for the memory books. Reports peg the number of parade participants at over 15,000 marchers and countless supporters lined the streets, attended the festivals and weekend block-parties. Sunday's block parties capped over a week of celebrations, services, seminars, and parties.

Cynicism took a backseat to the rainbow themed contingents of children, elders, businesses, religious groups, clubs, performance groups, sports clubs and elected officials march joyfully through the Back Bay, South End, by the State House, and ending at City Hall Plaza.

Gunner Scott and the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC), one of the Parade Marshals, heard loud cheers of support along the parade route-many celebrating the passage of the Trans Rights Bill in 2011. Scott noted in an interview with BNN that there was reason to celebrate, but work needed to be done to include public accommodation language into the bill. The law as it stands ends discrimination against trans people in hiring, but not in service.

In keeping with tradition, several motorcycle clubs kicked off the parade, followed by Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino and Governor Deval Patrick. Some other elected officials marching included State Representatives Aaron Michlewitz, Byron Rushing, and Marty Walz, City Councilors Stephen Murphy, Salvatore LaMattina, Mike Ross, Ayanna Pressley, John Connolly and Felix Arroyo, and Congresswoman Niki Tsongas. A large group marched in support of President Barack Obama's reelection and Senatorial candidate Elizabeth Warren was greeted with cheers.

Congressman Barney Frank, who is retiring at the end of his term, marched with Joseph Kennedy III, who is running for Frank's seat.

Many in the parade audience remarked positively on the lack of gaps in this year's parade, and what seemed to be the addition of more "props" in the groups (like a large shoe from TJX companies-which owns Marshall's and TJ Maxx).

Police have reported no arrests or disturbances related to the Pride celebrations.?Visit www.baywindows.com for photo galleries.

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