Almost every city in the United States now holds a pride parade, and the one here in Atlanta is one of the biggest, in an effort to raise awareness of issues that are unique to those that do not live a heterosexual lifestyle. This includes those that are gay, bi-sexual, queer, transsexual and more. These parades work to increase tolerance and advocate for equality for all, regardless of their sexual preference. In Atlanta, Georgia such marches and festivals have occurred for over 50 years.
Features Of The Atlanta Pride Festival & Parade
One thing that is very unique to the pride parade in Atlanta’s Piedmont Park is that different sub-groups of the pride community march at different times. This is to highlight the specific problems that each group faces in society. Transsexuals have their own time to march as do lesbians, these two marches are typically held on the first day of the event. Following these there is the general pride parade on the next day.
Another thing that differs from many other cities is that when there is a pride parade, or any march for that matter, the organizers of the event face very specific requirements. This leads to the march itself not being open to anyone that wishes to participate. This obviously has drawbacks, as it may appear that the community is smaller than it actually is. The pride community counters this with having multiple events throughout the Atlanta metro as well as focusing its efforts more diligently. All marchers are encouraged to bring signs that show those watching exactly what concerns are of importance to them.
In order to participate in any of the 3 marches you must register in advance. Each year it becomes more and more difficult to get onto the list as registration times shorten. The city of Atlanta has also repeatedly changed the requirements in recent years, leading to fewer people being permitted to participate. The city notes security and safety concerns as the reasoning, but many in the LGBTQ community question that and believe it is an attempt to restrict free speech.
All of these restrictions, however, have done nothing to hamper the support the community has given the Atlanta marchers, or the marcher’s determination to carry out their event each and every year. You can typically expect the event to occur during mid-October. If you wish to participate you should watch for the registration opportunity months in advance and join the various groups that lead the initiative. The group for Trans hold the Annual Trans March and the group for lesbians holds the Annual Dyke March right here in Atlanta, Georgia.
It should also be noted that they do take great appreciation in those that are out to support them in the form of being an ally. While you may not be invited to participate in a specific march, you certainly can support them by cheering them on as they pass through the venue that they are permitted to use that year.
Every year, the march/parade is in midtown Atlanta. You can read more about the best of Atlanta in our previous post. The Atlanta pride parade is going strong after 50 years and is expected to continue for many years to come. If you live in the area, or will be visiting, it is a great event to show your support for the LGBTQ community.