“Celebrate The Past To Awaken The Future”: 2013 Pride Fest At Soldiers Memorial, June 29-30, 2013
St. Louis, Mo. — December 5, 2012 — Pride St. Louis, Inc. is making some exciting changes in its 34th year. This year, the festival will be held in the heart of downtown St. Louis, at Soldiers Memorial. That means tourists and visitors will be able to enjoy the festival as well as taking in the amenities and iconic scenery of the Gateway City.
In recent years, growing numbers of attendees and supporters mean Pride St. Louis has the opportunity to reach even more people with its messages of understanding and tolerance for LGBT neighbors in St. Louis and around the world. After record breaking attendance in 2012, the move downtown in 2013 will give attendees new opportunities and bring even more visitors to the festival, including extended evening hours and additional entertainment.
“Downtown was built by St. Louisans who liked a great parade. Over the years, we have celebrated heroes, champions, victories, and holidays on downtown’s wide streets and plazas. With the public buildings, including the magnificent new Peabody Opera House and Central Library, as backdrops, the pictures are going to be dramatic,” said St. Louis City Mayor Francis G. Slay. “I am very pleased to welcome Pride St. Louis and our parade to the city’s best parade route. I also predict the biggest party Downtown has seen in decades.”
This historic move puts Pride St. Louis in the shadow of some of St. Louis’s most iconic institutions, including the Gateway Arch, City Hall, and the historic Old Courthouse. There has never been a more appropriate time for this symbolic move than when LGBT rights are making strides nationwide.
The Human Rights Campaign award St. Louis a perfect score of 100 on its 2012 Municipal Equality Index, measuring inclusivity among American cities.
“Within just the last year we have seen remarkable movement on LGBT issues, not just in our region, but across the country. The movement of the annual Pride Festival to downtown Saint Louis is only fitting and appropriate,” said AJ Bockelman, PROMO executive director. “Our region already has great diversity. Now Downtown Saint Louis will embrace and showcase the diversity of the LGBT community.”
Three U.S. states voted in support of gay marriage during the 2012 elections, illustrating that progress in St. Louis reflects a national trend toward inclusion and acceptance of LGBT friends, neighbors, and family members in American life.
This year’s festival theme will be “Celebrate The Past To Awaken The Future.” With an estimated 100,000 attendees in 2012 from the Midwest and around the world, Pride. St Louis is excited to offer even more opportunities, amenities, and entertainment than ever before in 2013.
“The opportunity for Pride Fest to be downtown enables greater visibility for our community,” said Wendy Markum, executive director of Gateway Men’s Chorus, and Al Fischer, artistic director.
Pride Fest 2013, to be held June 29-30, 2013, will take place in the heart of a welcoming downtown St. Louis as the LGBT community embarks on a new chapter in its history.
ABOUT PRIDE ST. LOUIS
Pride St. Louis, Inc. is a non-profit community based organization that has been working to raise understanding and acceptance of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender individuals in our community for over thirty years.Pride St. Louis began in 1979 by a group called The Magnolia Committee. The first Pride Celebration occurred in 1980 with a few hundred participants. In June 2012, Pride St. Louis welcomed the largest crowds in its 33 year history to the annual Pride Festival with more than 100,000 patrons in attendance!