I have attended every Pride parade since 1993 when I moved to Chicago. In Tennessee where I grew up the parade was not something to proud of with a few people walking down a Nashville street and onlookers making fun of them.
So this last Sunday in June event every year is not something I take lightly.
Originally I rode on the Tower Records float and DJed for them on a huge red bus. Years later I dressed in specially printed t-shirts with a group of 30 or more with a theme and rainbow Jell-O shots.
The parade has changed over the years by adding guard rails and increasing liquor control. While still a good time, emotions have gotten even stronger and fights have broken out.
A Pride Fest event has been started in the last few years with musical acts and booth to kick things off. I interviewed several of the performers including Jojo and Martha Wash. It was so great seeing friend Aurora Sexton and Debbie Fox perform.
I ran to the Backlot Bash in Andersonville to see friend Chely Wright perform and was greeted with so much lesbian love!
The day of the parade I arose early with rainbow Nunn costume in hand. After some crazy nunning around to get to the front of the parade, I changed in a bar bathroom and went to take pics but when I saw my ChicagoPride brothers and sister I jumped on the float instead! Anthony, Kinley and Precious Jewel kept me grooving and waving my rainbow flag all day. Like a rainbow rollercoaster I didn’t want it to end but loved the new route!
I could hardly walk to the after parties with my colorful habit on without taking pictures with someone every two minutes. One lady made me hold her dog to be in a photo with me, awkward! I was so grateful for their support though.
I went to the Scissor Sisters concert in the evening and met amazing people like Ben Cohen and hung out with great friends like Art Smith, Matthew Harvat, and Greg Haus.
I could have danced all night even though I was exhausted after a long gay weekend but finally it was time to hit the sheets.
For me that was what Pride was all about being open and not being scared to take a risk wearing a Nunn’s costume. Seeing community friends out and about while making new ones. In many ways this was the best Pride yet and I look forward to many more to come!
Pride Weekend was crazy for me. I met Sharon Gless at promotional luncheon for her movie Hannah Free. Then I ran over to see Taylor Dayne at Pridefest. Afterwards, I met her and thanked her for the interview here. She was happy to see me. We hugged and I showed her the newspaper.
I left the festival to head over to the Chely Wright signing at Borders Bookstore. She read excerpts from her book and explained how she almost killed herself before she came out of the closet. When people started sharing their stories on how they have been mistreated being gay and lesbian coming out of the closet, there was not a dry eye in the house! She sang a few songs and described her dealings with the music labels. Her interview with me is here. She was the Grand Marshall for the parade the next day.
I worked at the restaurant at night and snuck over to the backlot bash to watch a street party.
The next morning it was time to get up and celebrate the Pride Parade. It is always a blast to see so many past friends and watch all of the floats. It truly was a beautiful day. You gotta have pride!!!
Randy Pubert and Dick Groeper review adult movies From the Booth! Grab your popcorn, your lube and enjoy the ride!
Pride Parts 1 & 2 by Kristen Bjorn
Judging a Porn By Its Cover:
Pubert: Let’s celebrate our Pride issue with Pride: The Movie!
Groeper: I am glad the cast is “proud” and “hot.”
P: The cover looks more Mardi Gras than Pride.
G: What’s the difference?
P: Not much.
Our Pride party begins with hunks wearing Kristen Bjorn underwear on a float.
G: How would you like to have your name on those asses?
P: They are like walking billboards.
G: Notice how some of them are better dancers than others.
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