CHICAGO -- Chicago showed its pride at the 48th Annual Pride Parade Sunday afternoon, as groups from across the city (including some of Chicago's Very Own) marched across the North Side.
The parade felt more celebratory than last year, when it took place in the shadow of the shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, FL. Security was tight but the mood was fun, colorful, and full of pride in Boystown. For 48 years the pride parade has made its way down Chicago streets, and for 48 years it has been a source of pride for Chicago's LGBTQ community.
Plenty of officers and sheriff's deputies were along the parade route, but few problems were reported. Those who lined the sidewalks three to four deep felt safe, but more than that - they felt loved.
For years, politics and pride have come together; this year was no different. There were those already elected and those who want to be in office someday. National politics and the president were also a reason many felt showing up for this year's Pride was just as important as last year.
Politics aside, Pride has always been a fun-filled event. That included a cast of characters known as Chicago's Very Own. Atop a float and with Bozo at their side, the team celebrated pride in our city and the beautiful, colorful, enthusiastic people who make it great.
Normally, it's when the parade is over that some of the problems start, most of which are fueled by alcohol. Police say they will have a heavy presence in Boystown and surrounding neighborhoods throughout the night.