Photos by Matt Cohn.
Blue skies and ocean breezes greeted thousands of spectators and participants yesterday at this year’s Long Beach Pride Parade.
“This year’s amazing,” said parade coordinator Tonya Martin. “We have over 140 parade entries and we started off with a mass gay marriage.”
Singer Thelma Houston, a Long Beach native, was a parade Grand Marshal this year.
Long Beach City Clerk Maria De La Luz Garcia presided over the weddings of five couples at once. Several more married couples were on hand to renew their wedding vows.
“I am so excited to be part of this,” said Garcia. “It’s great to celebrate love and unity in this great city.”
This year’s Pride Festival theme was “Solidarity Through Pride.”
Spectators along the Ocean Boulevard parade route gave enthusiastic welcomes to a long list of parade participants which included singer and Long Beach native Thelma Houston.
“I’ve performed for the festival several times, but this is my first time being a Grand Marshal and it feels great!” said Houston, who’s best known for her iconic disco hit “Don’t Leave Me This Way.”
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