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Gay Pride Celebration Held in C. Oregon


The eighth annual Gay Pride Festival took place this weekend at Riverbend Park, with hundreds in attendance.

This year, there were some new sponsors, including Rise Up Presents, that provided music.

Stars and Rainbows, a group that organizes social activities for gay people and their families, also helped organize Saturday’s festival.

The group recently reached 300 members, and the event organizer says that’s a reflection of gay people feeling a little safer and accepted in the community.

“We are everyone,” said Melissa Adams Gianoplus, executive director of the Human Dignity Coalition. “As we are your friends, we are your family, we are your neighbors, we are your customers, we are your service providers — we are just like everyone else.”

Adams Gianoplus said while gay people feel safer and more accepted, there’s still problems like bullying in schools and the fact that gay marriage is still illegal in many states.

The festival was also a celebration of developments, including the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.

Adams Gianoplus said she was overwhelmed with the support, because it’s hard to know just how much gays are accepted and valued.

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