I’d never been to a Pride Parade before this past weekend when I went to cover this year’s for the Syracuse New Times. I guess I’d never gone previously only because I’m surly and try to avoid leaving the house too much. It turned out to be pretty great, though.
Going in, I had some preconceived notions. How could I not? What I’ve seen in the media of Pride Parades in big cities in past years made me expect lots of half naked men with fairy wings dancing up on each other (shame on me for making that assumption) – and there was a little bit of that. But it was really much more diverse. If it used to be an LGBT event, it has certainly morphed into an LGBTQA happening not exclusive to people of any one age group, race, class, or level of ableness. This is not to say it was perfectly inclusive. I was pleasantly surprised, however.
When you try to photograph strangers in a public place, reactions can range from people simply turning away from you to getting grumpy or even combative. But everyone was in good spirits, smiling at me when they saw me with my cameras, and enjoying the nice weather. I got such a sunburn that I came away with a head that looked like a beefsteak tomato – it was worth it, though. I look forward to going again next year, to work or not, and I’m pretty bummed that I’ve probably missed out on a lot of fun over the last who-knows-how-many years.
See the full gallery HERE.