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Gay pride parade Wichita 2017

Wichita, Kansas hosted it's annual Gay Pride Parade from June 16-18 at the Keeper of the Plains.

The+stage+and+audience+for+the+drag+show+to+take+place.
The stage and audience for the drag show to take place.

The stage and audience for the drag show to take place.

The stage and audience for the drag show to take place.


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The phone company Sprint supervising games and other activities supporting the parade.

 

 

The month of June is a reminder and celebration of the day gay marriage was legalized on June 28, 2015. Wichita, Kansas is a contributor to this occasion and hosted the annual Gay Pride Parade from June 16-18 at the Keeper of the Plains.

Just two years after the first step taken towards progression, this event was a celebration and a time for people to come together over the belief that everyone is equal and that people shouldn’t be identified on how they dress or who they choose to love.

“When they started Gay Pride Parade in 1970, in Chicago, they were huge because you know, it’s Chicago and half a million people would be in the parade and they would all go out to Grand Park. I’m glad all the work we did, all the marching we did and everything we did is paying off in rights more given,” retired Joe Mueller said.

The parade brought in a bouncy house for the children, coffee from Starbucks, and even a drag show performance.

“I like drag shows. Most gay men don’t like drag shows. My day growing up, almost the whole community was going to drag shows. I’m 77 and I still love a good drag show. I don’t like bad drag ya know?” Mueller said.

A performer participating in the drag show, Kim Chi, lip-sang Taylor Swift’s’ song “Trouble” and paired it with a goat screaming to amuse the audience while also speaking out for the gay pride community.

“It’s a different experience because it’s kind of like becoming a different character outside of normal. I’m usually a quiet kind of person. Obviously when I am performing, I’m not so quiet. Bringing people together, sometimes things get rough the way life goes no matter what it is so it’s nice to just forget about it even if it’s for three minutes. Even for people that are not accepting of it, I mean sometimes you just have to laugh at a man wearing a dress. It’s just that simple,” Kim Chi said.

Attending this event was Northwest Senior Irene De La Rosa as well as Senior Finn Stevens with her Alumni friends Leo Warne and Ash Falberg. Stevens was passionate to write a research paper for her English class prior to the parade about transgender bathroom rights.

“People should just be able to be themselves and have the same rights as everyone else. I got chills when I saw all the people in the parade. I did not think it would be that big,” Stevens said.

This event had many sponsors from companies like Cargill, AARP, and T-Moblie. T-Mobile brought games to win prizes to support their company.

“T-Moblie as a company, has sponsored 150 pride parades across the United States this year alone. T-Mobile is just an amazing company to work for in their diversity and inclusion as a whole,” T-Mobile worker Holly Calvert said.

Other organizations attended the parade not only to show support for gay rights, but to bring awareness to gun violence in America as well.

“We realized that people who are the more marginalized part of our society can often be targeted. So that’s where we wanted to get involved to try to get some common sense into our country again. People who are convicted of domestic violence. Felons. We are trying to just make it so the that the people who shouldn’t have guns don’t have access to them,” gun rights activist Mary Karuso said.

The Gayly Newspaper located in Oklahoma City, OK  also had a booth passing out information and events that impact the gay community trying to inform people about trouble and triumph in the community.

“Pride means freedom. Pride means equality. Pride means we are still fighting and I love the new resist. I think that is what we need to do to keep going,” Editor- In- Chief of the Gayly newspaper Robyn Dorner said

Marissa Penne and her dog posing at the entrance of the meeting area.

Participants in the parade waiting in line to spin for a prize at a T-Mobile stand.

Joe Mueller and his husband Gary Ricketts posing for a photo

Teagan Parker- Jordan with her mother Rachel Parker-Jordan.

Picket signs that are propped up for all to read.

The stage and audience for the drag show to take place.

The Gayly Newspaper handing out papers that detail events and plans for the community.

Attendants buying souvenirs and other trinkets to support the community.

Kim Chi preforming Taylor Swift’s song “Trouble” while mixing it with a goat screaming.

Alumni students Leo Warne and Ash Falberg posing for a photo.

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The Student Voice of Wichita Northwest High School
Gay pride parade Wichita 2017