June 28, 2019 | Sex & Society

WorldPride and Stonewall 50 hit New York City this weekend

Not only is it New York City's Pride this weekend, but the city will also be hosting the first ever WorldPride to be held in the United States.

The event was launched on Wednesday, June 26, during a three hour event hosted by Whoopi Goldberg. 

“We all know that Pride isn’t just about the party,” Goldberg said. “We have Pride because so many strong and frustrated and queer people got loud and brave enough to say, ‘Stop! Stop! Stop! Stop! Stop! I am a human being!’…The Stonewall Uprising lead to five days of protest. We were in the streets protesting. We were protesting in people’s faces and you know what -- we are still protesting but the difference is today is that we are backed up by WorldPride. This has evolved into a global movement.”

WorldPride was started in 1997 by an organization called InterPride, an international organization representing Pride events around the world. The first celebration was held in Rome, Italy in 2000, and was put on by the Italian gay rights group Mario Mieli with InterPride's help.

New York was chosen to host the event as it is also the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots. The riots, which became a major rallying cry for the queer community to fight for its right to exist, erupted after police raided the Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in New York's Greenwich Village, on June 28, 1969. 

Stonewall riots

"This is a landmark anniversary for every LGBTQI person, not just for activists like me," explained Thanos Vlachogiannis, a Greek LGBTQ activist. "It makes me feel grateful for the freedom that the riots originated, but also reflect on the people we have lost and keep losing due to homophobia and transphobia. At the same time, Stonewall is about celebrating the victories of our movement and knowing that every day we make history by standing strong as LGBTQI individuals."
Millions are expected to attend the events in and around the city over the weekend.
Organizers are estimating that 150,000 marchers and over 160 floats will be part of the parade on Sunday, June 30 (starting at noon). Marchers will include the cast of Pose, television host Andy Cohen, and several "community heroes".
“I look at this like the Olympics,” said Cathy Renna, a spokeswoman for WorldPride. “We want the city to embrace this, outside the epicenter of Greenwich Village, and it has.”
You can find out all the details here.

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