CHICAGO (WLS) -- ABC 7 Chicago was the only Chicago television station to broadcast The 49th Annual Pride Parade "Remember the Past, Create the Future" on Sunday, June 24 from 11:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. The parade is available on-demand at www.abc7chicago.com. This annual broadcast was hosted by ABC 7's Janet Davies and WXRT radio personality Terri Hemmert, with ABC 7 Eyewitness News morning team anchors Terrell Brown and Tanja Babich capturing all the excitement on the street. This is the 15th year ABC 7 Chicago has broadcast the parade. The parade kicked off at noon on Sunday, June 24.
Participating in the 2018 parade were ABC 7's Ryan Chiaverini, Jessica D'Onofrio, Leah Hope, Jason Knowles, Windy City LIVE's Hank Mendheim, Liz Nagy riding atop ABC 7 Chicago's float.
The 2018 Grand Marshal was Puerto Rican boxer Orlando Cruz. Cruz represented Puerto Rico in the 2000 Olympic Games and shortly after became the first openly gay professionally active boxer in history.
The 49th Annual Pride Parade commenced from Montrose Avenue and Broadway in Uptown. It featured floats, decorated vehicles, marching bands, and walkers representing community businesses, organizations, elected officials and religious leaders. The parade traveled the 21-block route concluding near Diversey Parkway and Sheridan Road in Lincoln Park. The Pride Parade is Chicago's second largest parade, with more than one million spectators on hand Sunday.
The parade originally started to commemorate the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, the most important event in the history of the gay rights movement.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel proclaimed June as Pride Month in Chicago. The Pride Parade festivities support the gay, lesbian, bisexual, queer and transgender communities.
Cathy Karp was the producer of the parade broadcast.
Nico Osteria offered special Pride desserts Saturday and Sunday in partnership with New York's Big Gay Ice Cream. Some proceeds benefited Howard Brown Health, an organization that works to "eliminate the disparities in healthcare experienced by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people."