Oklahoma City celebrates first Pride as official celebration week

OKLAHOMA CITY - It`s been a big week here in OKC as thousands have turned out in celebration of Pride Week, now observed as an official week in the city after a proclamation by Mayor David Holt.

The fun kept on going Saturday for the Pride parade with attendees saying a new date and start time didn`t put a damper on all the support.

"I`m very excited. Looking around and seeing all these people here," said AC Facci, OKC Pride Alliance board member.

Thousands lined the streets near the 39th Street District wearing every shade of the rainbow, all to celebrate Pride Week.

"It`s good to have this parade every year to remind us that we`re not alone," said Mandy Ward, parade attendee.

The Pride Parade kicked off Saturday`s events with a route along 39th Street from Classen to Youngs, leading into the all-day festival.

"It`s the only thing I could do this weekend. I wouldn`t think of doing anything else," Dwayne Harbert, a parade attendee, told News 4.

This year`s parade was a little different.

It was moved from Sunday to Saturday and had an earlier start time than years past.

Also with a theme fitting for this year`s history.

"This year`s theme of Oklahoma City Pride Legends and Rebels is an homage to the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots at the Stonewall and in New York City," said Facci.

Earlier in the week, the mayor has designated this week as `Pride Week.` A first in Oklahoma City.

"The fact that he was here and that he actually designated this Pride Week fills me with so much pride to be an Oklahoman," said Harbert.

"I think it`s about time. We appreciate and love him for that," said Ward.

Organizers and supporters hoping to leave the city with a message for all:

"Oklahoma City is a place where they`re welcome. Where they`re accepted and that gay rights are human rights. Queer rights are human rights. And that we`re here to stay," explained Facci.

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