*OUT Maine will be tabling!
Belfast, ME–The LGBTQ+ community and its allies will once more have a place to parade and celebrate this June, Pride month, in Waldo County. Belfast Area High School’s Gender and Sexuality Alliance Club (GSA) is organizing the Belfast Has Pride parade, which will be held on Saturday, June 10, 2023. Those interested in parading through town in solidarity are invited to meet at 10:30 at Belfast Area High School. Spectators can show their support by cheering on the parade starting at 11 AM along Waldo Ave and Main Street, ending at the harbor. Our Town Belfast will be hosting a post parade celebration in Heritage Park with food, drinks, and music.
The first Pride parade was held in 1970 in New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago, on the first anniversary of an important gay rights milestone, the Stonewall riots. Portland, Maine had its first Pride parade in 1987, and June has officially been Pride month in the US since 1999. Now there are Pride parades in Maine from Ogunquit to Presque Isle.
The pandemic, however, meant that Belfast’s annual Pride event was canceled in 2020 and 2021. In 2022, with no one else stepping up to organize, the students and advisors of the BAHS GSA took on the project of revitalizing the parade. “The GSA was extremely gratified by the success of last year’s event,” says Willa Bywater, BAHS Class of 23 and GSA President. “The support of our community was beautiful to witness and we are hoping for even bigger turnout this year.”
Donations are gratefully accepted. Mail or drop off a donation at BAHS with GSA in the memo line.