4th of July Parade

by Michael Mahler

The GLBT community and its allies have been invited to participate in the Millcreek July 4 Parade. Everyone interested is invited to gather at 10 AM on July 4 around W. 12th St. and Marshall Ave. (the Erie Insurance building and also former site of Lizzy Bordon's.) Look for the Erie Peace and Justice banner, as well as the Erie Gay News banner and the big rainbow banner. The parade will be marching to Erie International Airport.

Last year was the first time the GLBT community participated in the parade, but because there was little advance notice about the participation, only a few people were able to attend. Despite this, the marchers were very well received. Lots of people smiled and waved and Sean Lafferty of WJET TV 24 News announced the gay contingent at the end, along with all of the other contingents that were marching. The closest thing to a negative experience was one elderly man who said "Boo!" and gave the thumbs down.

Organization banners are permitted in the parade, but individual signs with political messages are not. Participants representing a group are urged to bring their banner along! In addition, help carrying the big rainbow banner would be appreciated. It made a beautiful visual statement, but more people are needed to carry it.

Certainly, supporting GLBT events like the Pride Picnic and the March/Rally are extremely important. However, it is equally important to represent the GLBT community in a positive manner at non-gay events. There is room for all sorts of participation, and by having a great turnout, the GLBT community will benefit a great deal. It is also a lot of fun!

So, get out those marching shoes and join your GLBT friends and supporters on July 4!

Photos

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