The first Pride Parade and Festival ever held in Maryland’s state capital was a tremendous success according to Jeremy Browning, the organizer of the parade, festival and Annapolis Pride.
“We are absolutely thrilled with the tremendous turnout for this historic parade in the City of Annapolis,” Browning said. “It was especially significant that it came one day after the one-year anniversary of the Capital newspaper mass shooting, and one day after the 50-year anniversary of the LGBTQ protests at the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village in New York.”
Annapolis Pride’s Parade and Festival Committee Chair, Mariah Davis, spoke of the importance of events such as this, not only in the LGBTQ community, but for everyone.
“Each June, the LGBTQ+ community and allies have a space in society to celebrate and embrace our queerness,” Davis said. ” This type of visibility not only increases safety, but alleviates preconceived judgement that we are not equal.”
Browning said Annapolis Pride has been overjoyed with the support it has received from the City of Annapolis and the many event sponsors and supporters.
“We were honored to have the backing of an incredible number of sponsors who are helping us build an inclusive community and celebrate diversity in Annapolis,” Browning said. “Mayor Gavin Buckley and his team have been amazing to work with. We are very grateful for their enthusiastic support of our efforts.”
Buckley served as the official parade Grand Marshal along with 13-year old Claire Drapeau of Crofton. Last June Drapeau organized a Pride Walk along Annapolis’ Main Street where Buckley and about fifty others joined her in on a rainy June day.
Musical entertainment at the festival included L. Rodgers, Mac+Blue, the Third Sunday Band, Gay Mens Chorus of Washington DC, and the Priddy Music Academy.
Collins Aerospace was the official Pride Festival sponsor and The Graduate Annapolis Hotel was the official Pride Parade sponsor.
In all, a total of 55 units marched in the parade with nearly 100 vendors lining the first block of West Street and Calvert Street for the festival.
Browning said the support has been both inspiring and overwhelming.
“Annapolis Pride has grown out of our love for the town we live in and the people who love work, and play here,” Browning said. ” We are building an organization that supports and celebrates the LBGTQ+ community and brings together shared resources and safe spaces where local residents, businesses, and organizations work together.”
The 2nd Annual Pride Parade and Festival is already on the books–June 27, 2020.
Below are three FB live videos of the parade. Unfortunately, the 96-degree sun and the phone did not agree and the phone shut down a few times.