PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The City of Philadelphia celebrated pride in grand fashion on Sunday. The LGBTQ+ community and its allies came out in force in Center City for a parade and festival.
As they say, the first pride was a riot. That was exactly 50 years ago at Stonewall in New York.
The historic riots accelerated the LGBTQ+ movement in the United States.
Sunday’s parade in Philadelphia was a party, mixed with politics and a special thanks to those who paved the way.
The Philadelphia Pride Parade whistled, floated and gloated down Market Street in stunning fashion.
“Beyond words, it’s fantastic to see so many people come out and support us, to see so much love in the community,” Lady E, a parade participant, said. “It’s wonderful.”
Amelia Powell handed out Mom Hugs to those who needed or wanted one.
“I’m from Philadelphia, I’ve grew up all over the country, I’ve lived in New Orleans and Chicago,” Powell said, “and Philly for most of the last couple of years. Eighty percent of my friends are in need of hugs because not everybody gets accepted the way they should.”
It’s a nationwide effort to hug those who haven’t yet been accepted by their families.
“If their parents won’t accept them,” Powell said, “I will and I’m happy to go to their wedding and walk them down the aisle or anything they need.”
This year’s pride takes on even added significance as it’s the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots that took place in Greenwich Village, New York, in June 1969.
“They started a path, a path that says you have a right to love who you love, be who you are, that’s part of what it means to be an American,” Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf said. “We are in deep debt to them, what they started 50 years ago. Here in Pennsylvania, we still have work to do.”
Mayor Jim Kenney attacked President Donald Trump, saying rights fought by the LGBTQ+ community are in jeopardy.
“This crackpot in the White House and his homophobic vice president are trying to turn back the clock to the days before the 60s,” Kenney said. “Be vigilant, be courageous, be yourself, we see you.”
Back on Market Street, Greyson Hardy, of Marlton, New Jersey, turns 13 years old this week.
Draped in a pride flag, Hardy watched the procession with his father, John Hardy.
“It’s been really cool to see so many different people,” Greyson said. “In Marlton, I don’t see that much, so it’s been really cool to see.”
“It makes you understand he’s part of a bigger community, there’s time he says he feels isolated at home, to come out here to see how many different people involved and how much love is involved and the support within the community, it’s really a beautiful thing,” Hardy said.
CBS3’s Dan Koob reports.