Pride parade largest one in Windsor, organizers say

The parade started 24 years ago with just a small group. On Sunday there were 48 entries.

SHARON HILL, WINDSOR STAR

The Pride parade down Ouellette Avenue Sunday was the largest one yet in Windsor, organizers said.

The parade started 24 years ago with just a small group. On Sunday there were 48 entries.

“This is our biggest parade yet. Next year is 25 and I’m really looking forward to next year,” parade co-ordinator Wendi Nicholson said Sunday morning.

The parade started with volunteers carrying a long rainbow-coloured ribbon. There were dogs in the parade, a giant flamingo and lots of rainbow flags. Near the back of the parade was a CUPE Local 543 truck shooting bubbles into the air and carrying a trailer decorated with a rainbow of colourful balloons. There were buses of people and trucks representing a variety of businesses and organizations and entries from the Windsor police, firefighters, EMS, and Liberal and NDP politicians.The Windsor Essex Pride Festival parade makes its way down Ouellette Ave., Sunday, August 7, 2016. DAX MELMER / WINDSOR STARFestival-goers pose for a photo at Pride Day at the Riverfront Festival Plaza, Sunday, August 7, 2016. DAX MELMER / WINDSOR STARThe crowd lined up along Ouellette Avenue especially around University Avenue where the road was closed for the weekend. They were cheering as parade walkers handed out balloons, Pride buttons and fans.

The parade was about bringing the community together, not just the LGBT community but the city as a whole, Nicholson said. She hopes there is a day when they won’t need a Pride parade.“Eventually it would be that we wouldn’t have to have this. Everybody would be equal,” she said.

On Saturday Meara Coulter, 18, was sitting at the riverfront with a rainbow flag draped over her shoulders like a cape. The waterfront had music and craft and food vendors.

Coulter said Pride weekend is a time for everyone to come together and celebrate their differences. “Just kind of celebrate the progress we’ve made in the last couple years towards equality. There’s still a long ways to go but we’ve already come so far,” Coulter said.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.The Windsor Essex Pride Festival parade makes its way down Ouellette Ave., Sunday, August 7, 2016. DAX MELMER / WINDSOR STARThe Windsor Essex Pride Festival parade makes its way down Ouellette Ave., Sunday, August 7, 2016. DAX MELMER / WINDSOR STARThe Windsor Essex Pride Festival parade makes its way down Ouellette Ave., Sunday, August 7, 2016. DAX MELMER / WINDSOR STARTheresa Matuscak Currie, 4, celebrates at Pride Day at the Riverfront Festival Plaza, Sunday, August 7, 2016. DAX MELMER / WINDSOR STAR

 
 
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