This year is the 43rd annual San Francisco Pride Parade and we have uncovered a few facts you might not know:
1. The first Gay Pride parades were held the weekend of June 27 and 28, 1970 in Chicago, New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. They were organized to commemorate the first anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. The first San Francisco parade was held in 1970— it was a small gathering in Golden Gate Park. Since 1972, the event has been held each year and the name of the festival has changed over the years. The event organizers each year select a theme for the event, which is reflected in the logo and the event’s publicity.
2. The rainbow flag was created by Gilbert Baker, one of Harvey milk’s good friends. It made its debut as a gay pride symbol at the San Francisco Pride Parade in 1978. Baker was asked to design a unifying symbol for the gay community and the rainbow flag was the result.
3. Originally thre were eight colors on the rainbow flag includeing hot pink and turquoise, symbolizing sexuality and art. As a result of the increasing demand for the flag, Baker approached Paramount Flag Company for mass production. At the time hot pink fabric was unavailable, so Baker dropped the hot pink stripe from the design. To keep an even number of stripes, turquoise was also dropped, resulting in the six-stripe flag that is widely used today.
4. The first mayor to take part in a Pride Parade was San Francisco’s George Moscone in 1978.
5. The parade which started as a small gathering of 30 “hair fairies” in 1970 has grown up over the years to reach 1.2 million people in 2008.
Enjoy the festivities this week-end. and show some pride!
Congratulations San Francisco ane the LGBT community.