Pride Marching Sunday
June 26, 2003
235 Pinelawn, Melville, NY 11747-4250
By Marc Parry, Staff Writers
Marchers in the annual gay pride parade Sunday say they
will have something extra to celebrate this year on the heels of two landmark
On Thursday, the U.S. Supreme Court deemed
unconstitutional Texas’s ban on homosexual sex. The decision follows a June
17 ruling granting marriage rights to gays in Ontario, Canada’s most
Janice Thom from Heritage of Pride, the organizers of
Sunday’s march, called the Texas decision a “stunning gain” that will
electrify the day’s festivities.
“Each one of us as a homosexual now knows that this
country recognizes our rights just a little bit more than they did
yesterday,” she said. “And that puts the wind at your back.”
There is no wind in Sunday’s forecast, just a few
clouds and a high temperature of 83 degrees. The parade will begin at noon at
52nd Street and Fifth Avenue. It will head south following a lavender line
painted on the street and end 4 1/2 miles later at Christopher and Greenwich
streets in the village.
Brendan Fay, an Astoria gay rights activists, said
Ontario’s new marriage laws will make this year’s march “a particularly
joyous occasion.” Fay, 45, plans to cross the border July 12 to marry his
partner of seven years. The two will march down Fifth Avenue together.
“On Sunday you’re going to see a lot of couples,”
Fay said. “And the conversation on Fifth Avenue will be, ‘When are you
going to Canada?’”
“This year we have something amazing to celebrate,”
said Michael Adams of the Lamda Legal Defense and Education Fund, which worked
on the Texas case. “This is the most important gay rights victory out of the
This year organizers will honor two theater veterans:
playwright Terrence McNally and actress Cherry Jones.
Meanwhile, a daylong fair called Pridefest will take
place at Greenwich and Washington streets in the West Village. Stalls will
offer everything from advice on adoption to rainbow colored tube socks. There
also will be a performance stage. The day will end at Pier 54 with the
“Dance of Pride” fund-raiser.
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