Monday, June 3, 2013

Utah Pride Parade 2013

This weekend was the Utah Pride Festival and Pride Parade in Salt Lake City. I've been meaning to go for years but my schedule never allowed it but luckily everything worked out this year. The festival itself was awesome. Organizers couldn't have asked for better weather and the whole event was bursting with positivity and joie de vie.

As for the parade, I couldn't pass up the chance to snap some pictures. The lighting was crazy harsh and I unfortunately got into a position where everyone was walking away from the sun so forgive me if a few of these seem washed out.

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I was going to lead this post with another picture, since most media coverage of the Utah Pride Parade will inevitably focus on the Mormons Building Bridges group and the perceived conflict in Salt Lake City between the LGBT community and the Mormon Church, but at the parade it was obvious that MBB was a centerpoint. The group itself was massive this year and when it rounded the corner onto 200 South the crowd erupted into cheers.

Also, it should be noted that Salt Lake City was named the Gayest City in the U.S. in 2012 and recently it was reported that SLC has the highest percentage of same-sex couples with children.

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Most of the "floats" consisted of groups of people walking down the street. Visually it's not as striking as, say, a Thanksgiving Day Parade, but at least everything is vibrantly colorful.

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Also, the spectators are just as fun as the parade itself.

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The Smith's entry, which featured a squad of rainbow-adorned shopping carts.

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Sen. Jim Dabakis, the only openly gay member of the Utah Legislature, spending time with a potential voter.

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Flag twirlers from West High School

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The Human Rights Campaign, carrying their signature blue equality flag. I love the way the light goes through the flag and makes a mirror image on the ground.

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The men and women of Wasatch Roller Derby jumping in the street. This picture was fraught with problems, the sun washed everything out and I  ran out into the parade trying to capture this guy in mid-air but was too late.

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"Real Men Sing!" I couldn't agree more, though I would add "...and play Ukulele!"

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The beautiful men and women of Club Hydrate.

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I didn't catch what group this was (American Express?) but loved the visual of these colorful flags lining the street.

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Fierce!

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My favorite float of the parade. These guys had a whole choreographed number to Rihanna's "Umbrella" and the colors were great.

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The Moab Pride Festival guys representing. We had a chance to explore this float the night before at the Pride Festival and it's absolutely chock-full of gadgets and flair. You can't see it from this angle but on the other side of the fan there's a rope swing on an extended beam.

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I had to work in a balloon-rainbow photo.

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Salt Lake City's Bike Share

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