SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The City of Springfield kicked off Pride month with a flag raising ceremony Thursday morning.
Mayor Domenic Sarno, Health and Human Services Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer Judith Crowell and other city officials joined the Springfield Pride Parade Committee and the LGBTQ+ community for the Springfield Pride flag raising ceremony at City Hall. In just two days, the 2nd annual Springfield Pride Parade steps off.
“On behalf of the Springfield Pride parade organization, we are back,” said Springfield Pride Parade founder Taurean Bethea, who came out in 2017 standing with a community that he says has something to be celebrated. “We are super excited internally, this year was to go bigger and better and I think we accomplished that mission.”
Last year, a little over 5,000 people came to celebrate, this year Springfield’s Chief Inclusion and Diversity Officer Judith Crowell predicts over 12,000 to come and celebrate pride in the city of Springfield.
The Parade will begin at noon on Saturday from Springfield Technical Community College and will end with a block party going through the afternoon and evening at Stearns Square. Mayor Sarno has fond memories of last year’s parade and is looking forward to more of the same.
“It’s going be a fantastic time, I had a great time marching and I did a little dancing down here in Court Square and it was just so heartwarming. It was just absolutely fantastic, everybody coming together as one,” said Sarno.
On Thursday evening at MGM Springfield Aria Ballroom, money will be raised to support youth based initiatives at the You Ball which celebrates and honors our region’s LGBTQIA+ and Ally business owners, professionals, and community.