Hundreds of thousands expected to celebrate gay pride Sunday
New York's Gay Pride March has always attracted hundreds of thousands of revelers, but after the Supreme Court's rulings this week, LGBT groups say Fifth Avenue is going to explode with jubilation.
The organizer of the parade said he expects 1.8 million to show up for the event Sunday, a 10% jump from last year. Chris Frederick, the parade's managing director, said there is a lot of energy from the LGBT community after the courts struck down the Defense of Marriage Act and legalized gay marriage in California on Wednesday.
"We had been in the dark and fought for equality, and now we're focusing on the rights we gained," he said.
The parade will start at 36th Street and Fifth Avenue and make its way south to the West Village. It will pass by the Stonewall Inn, which was already the site of a rally in honor of the DOMA plaintiff Edith "Edie" Windsor.
Windsor, 84, is the parade's co-grand marshal along with Earl Fowlkes, the president and CEO of the Center for Black Equity, and performer Harry Belafonte. Frederick said his crew chose Windsor because they knew the parade would fall close to the court's decision and they wanted to honor her hard work.
"Regardless of the outcome, we felt the impact of her fight was worth it to put her in the spotlight," he said.
City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, a mayoral candidate, said that the fight for LGBT rights isn't over and the community needs to continue to show its strength.
"That's why it's so important that everyone who supports equal rights for all ... be out marching on Sunday," she said in a statement.