Thousands line streets for 6th Annual Buffalo Grove Pride Parade

John Garcia Image
Sunday, June 2, 2024
Thousands line streets for northwest suburban Pride parade
The Buffalo Grove Pride Parade 2024 got underway on Sunday with rainbow flags and a celebration of the LGBTQ+ community.

BUFFALO GROVE, Ill. (WLS) -- Everyone loves a parade, and everyone was invited to the Sixth Annual Buffalo Grove Pride Parade on Sunday morning.

Onlookers gathered to watch the colorful parade entries. Many sported the rainbow flag, a symbol of the LGBTQ+ community.

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The Pinta family started the parade six years ago.

"We thought it would be us and our family and tree groups walking down the street, looking at trees," Bob Pinta said.

Instead, it has grown to more than 100 units with plenty of music and a family-friendly atmosphere for the several thousand people lining the streets.

"Who doesn't love a parade that celebrates love, inclusivity and free candy?" said parade-goer Barry Stark.

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Molly Pinta and her mother first started the Gay-Straight Alliance in their school, and it led to this Pride festival and parade.

"There are plenty of people in the community, at my school who don't get that support, and that's who this parade is for," Molly said.

In this election year, there are also lots of politicians, including President Joe Biden, or at least, his likeness.

"We did see that. I asked where Jill was. She was not in the car!" said parade-goer Lori Blum.

Many in the LGBTQ+ community are concerned the political gains they have made in recent years could be in jeopardy, and they are focused on getting out the vote.

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"It's important to show that everyone's voice matters," said parade-goer Yusuf Tewolde.

"It is dire that we get out the vote," said parade organizer Carolyn Pinta.

Many of these folks will be celebrating Pride for all of June, including at the Chicago Pride Parade at the end of the month.