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Regional News

Springfield to host its first annual LGBTQ+ Pride Parade

Helen Caulton-Harris, Springfield's Commissioner of Health and Human Services, and Taurean Bethea, organizer of Springfield's first annual Pride Parade, stand in front of a banner at City Hall.
Nirvani Williams
/
NEPM
Helen Caulton-Harris, Springfield's Commissioner of Health and Human Services, and Taurean Bethea, organizer of Springfield's first annual Pride Parade, stand in front of a banner at City Hall.

Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno announced Tuesday that the city will host its first-ever Pride Parade in June.

Taurean Bethea is organizing the event. He said he wanted a parade last year, but COVID-19 spikes hit hard.

"With COVID being so heavy on all of the youth, you know, depression numbers are spiking, suicide numbers were spiking. And then the LGBTQ+ community gets hit very heavy with those numbers," Bethea said. "So coming out of COVID, people need love, light, we need color, you know? And we were like, no better time than the present."

Sarno said it was about time Springfield had its first Pride parade.

"Being a longtime member of Mayors Against Discrimination to the LGBTQ community nationally, when it was brought to my attention about putting this together I said, 'Why not? Springfield is a city of firsts,'" he said.

The parade, scheduled for June 4, will start at Springfield Technical Community College and make its way down State Street to end in front of City Hall.

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