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PostHeaderIcon Loud & Proud: Pride Parade & Waterfront Festival 2011

 

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PROUD OF PRIDE: Rather than give you an overview, I thought I might share with you some of what I saw at this year's Pride Parade and Festival held on the streets of (primarily Northwest) Portland and Waterfront Park.

You see, for some reason, the group I marched with (Basic Rights Oregon) was placed near the tail end of the parade giving me plenty of time to go around and check out everyone else who participated in this year's big party/parade/gathering.

So, without further adieu, here are a few photos (and comments) from Pride 2011:

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The photo above is Oregon State Treasurer Ted Wheeler with Secretary of State Kate Brown. They were both marching with Basic Rights. These two high-profile state officials decided to kill time prior to the parade with a wicked hula-hoop-off. Brown showed incredible hooping skills, taking on not only one, but two, hoops before hitting the route. Ted didn't do too shabby either.

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Ben Cohen isn't the only straight athlete that supports LGBT rights. Collegiate wrestler Taylor Hudson, who currently coaches at Columbia University, is a vocal advocate for gay rights. This sports and human rights champion walked with Nike...

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and speaking of Nike. Wow. Not only did they have one of the largest groups marching in the Pride parade (about 500 strong), but they were also well represented by several of Nike's top executives, including CEO Mark Parker (above left), as well as athletes and out coaches from Oregon State (Kirk Walker) and Portland State University (Sherri Murrell).

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Another new face to the Pride parade was Episcopal Bishop Michael Hanley (above with Sec. of State Kate Brown) who was joined by my friend Father Jeff Littlefield and other members of the Episcopal Church as well as many other members of the clergy. I have to say, I love that Bishop Hanley decided it was important to him as an individual to march in this parade. He didn't have to do it, but he did. That's saying something.

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I also had an up close and personal chat with porn star Reese Rideout. One of top performers in the gay adult entertainment industry (he's done a ton of films), Reese was in town with several of the boys of Randy Blue for Sasha Scarlett's "Portland White Party" held Sunday night in inner Southeast Portland.

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The biggest thrill of the day wasn't meeting preachers or pornstars. It was walking the route with Basic Rights and "Max." You see, Max (above left) is my friend Marti Zimlin's son. And this was his first time ever marching in a parade. He spent most of the time on my shoulders as we walked the streets of Portland. He seemed to enjoy every minute of it, and was concerned about why people didn't always wave back when he waved to them. On the route I saw Sean Raymond (above right). A very cool kid with a very cool mom who were both out to show their support of pride. It was a very cool day.

Last Updated (Monday, 20 June 2011 16:20)

 
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