SLC was abuzz this weekend as the city celebrated Utah Pride 2009 — one of the most colorful parades and entertaining weekends all summer.
Pride kicked off Friday night with a reception and after party for Grand Marshal Cleve Jones, a social activist and lecturer who founded The Names Project AIDS Memorial Quilt and was depicted by Emile Hirsch in the movie Milk.
The festival gates opened Saturday at Washington Square with food, drink, music, dancing, and the comedic stylings of headliner Paula Poundstone.
Rain could not dampen Sunday’s Pride parade, which (with another day of festival fun afterward) culminated the three-day celebration. Participation in this year’s parade hit an all-time high, according to procession route insiders.
The University of Utah was well represented and had the most boisterous and enthusiastic marchers compared to its peers, Westminster and Utah State, who also took part in the event.
Drag queen divas, DJs on wheels, and less than half-clad hairdressers soaking in the raindrops, highlighted the parade’s floats. Overall the march struck a nice balance between the flat-out fun and the more down-to-business participants, like PFLAG, Equality Utah, Utahns for Marriage Equality, and the ACLU.