Published: Sep 30, 2009 02:00 AM
Modified: Sep 28, 2009 07:19 PM
More than 4,500 people attended the 25th N.C. Pride Festival, the state's biggest event for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, Saturday at Duke University's East Campus.
Blogger Pam Spaulding, of PamsHouseBlend.com
, talked about racism within the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community during her keynote address.
The parade included 114 groups ended with the Cackalack Thunder drum corps starting an impromptu dance-off for the multigenerational crowd. Seven high school and eight college LGBT groups, along with groups from churches and local businesses, marched in the parade.
The PrideFest event began in 1981 as a protest to the beating death of a local man someone thought was gay. Back then Durham resident Mary Margaret Graham couldn't have imagined a diverse crowd of young and old partying together as they did Saturday.
"It's so different now," Graham said. "That first one I remember as being a little stressful. I remember being a little bit afraid. I find it very emotional to see all the high school kids [in the parade on Saturday]. That was unheard of back [in 1981]."
Raleigh's James Habourn has attended PrideFest for the past six years.
"This is one of the few places I feel I fit in," Habourn said. "Pride isn't just about drag queens and dancing in the street. Even in the gay community, you have stereotypes. ... But at Pride, we all get along."
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