Gay pride parade draws thousands of supporters
Fifth Avenue was alive with pride Sunday as tens of thousands of revelers took to the streets to celebrate gay pride on the anniversary of New York's legalization of same-sex marriages.
Paradegoers of all backgrounds, who were decked out in pink, glitter and other extravagant styles, cheered elected officials, celebrities and groups who marched.
"It's time for people to wake up and see that gay people are like everyone else," said Danielle Lindsay, 32, a bisexual student from Long Island who attended the parade.
Cyndi Lauper was one of the parade's grand marshals and wowed the crowd with a black outfit and matching red top hat and megaphone.
Many gay marchers praised Lauper, a Queens native, and other heterosexual advocates who participated because it sent a positive message to the rest of the United States.
"This parade is the best one out there because everyone comes out, whether they're gay or not," said Joanne Bertone, 47, of Jackson, N.J., who rode down Fifth Avenue in her motorcycle.
Elected officials received a huge ovation because of Sunday's anniversary.
City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and her partner Kim Catullo, who tied the knot last month, marched hand in hand along with Mayor Michael Bloomberg and other Council members.
"You read about a lot of [leaders] who have hateful attacks on the community, but it's great to see a lot of support from [other leaders]," said Chester Ramos, 28, a paralegal from the East Village.
But not everyone in attendance was there to celebrate.
While a few protesters were on hand to decry same-sex marriage yesterday, paradegoers weren't fazed.
"People are more celebratory than ever," said Suzanne Ramos, of Gramercy, whose son is gay.