Students celebrate Pride Month at capital pride

Students attend the 43rd Capital Pride Festival June 9 with over 150,000 people. The festival serves as an outlet for students to celebrate and support one another’s identities, as a part of Pride Month. Cover photo courtesy Julia Levine.

By Clara Koritz Hawkes

Crowds of rainbow flag waving, celebrating LGBTQ+ identifying individuals and allies, lined the streets of D.C. June 9 for the 43rd annual Capital Pride Festival.

The festival occurs worldwide every year to celebrate Pride Month and attracted more than 150,000 people to D.C. this year. The event’s parade featured more than 200 hundred floats, with hundreds of companies, organizations and coalitions participating.

Many students attended the event, either to celebrate their sexuality or to support the LGBTQ+ community. For many LGBTQ+ identifying students, the event is a way to embrace their identity and meet others who identify similarly.

This was junior Yasmeen Gauri’s second pride parade, as she attended her first pride parade last year after coming out as bisexual.

“It was a really nice way to embrace [my bisexuality] and meet other people like me,” she said. “It’s also really empowering and funeveryone’s very open.”

For LGBTQ+ allies, the festival is an opportunity to celebrate and support the growing community and reject discrimination.

Junior Julia Levine attended the pride festival to support her sister, who is bissexual and identifies as gender-fluid. Levine also views the pride festival as an opportunity to not only celebrate and show support for her sister, but also spread awareness of the necessity for equality between all identities.

“The atmosphere was so happy and free of judgement,” she said. “Everyone was happy to be there and express themselves however they want. It was really amazing.”